Here we are with yet another recipe post and wine pairing for the week running up to our Valentines #WinePW. Click to read Christy of Confessions of a Culinary Diva's invitation to the Saturday #WinePW event. We're getting closer!
I had venison medallions that I'd purchased from D'Artagnan Foods. And I wanted to sear them and serve them with Justin Vineyards & Winery's Cabernet Sauvignon. I've long been a fan of Justin. And whenever we're in Paso Robles, we stop by. I was also excited to hear that Wine Enthusiast named them 2015 Winery of the Year. Nice and well-deserved!
I rarely say that a wine is pretty. But this one really, really is! It's clear with almost a garnet glow where the wine hits the glass.
On the nose, it's aromatic with both sweet berries and fragrant spices. On the palate, it's sophisticated with savory notes and expertly balanced tannins. What a wine!
On the Plate...
The savory notes in the wine had me thinking: juniper. Nothing goes as well together as wild game and juniper, right? Well, except for wild game, juniper, and an awesome red wine. I served these seared venison medallions on top of juniper-scented mashed potatoes and seared kale with a blanket to caramelized onions and mushrooms in a juniper-gin sauce. It was earthy deliciousness.
Ingredients serves 4
- 4 venison medallions, approximately 4 ounces each
- freshly ground salt
- freshly ground pepper
- olive oil
- 3 T butter
- 1 onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 C sliced mushrooms (I used brown crimini mushrooms)
- 1 ounce gin
- 1/4 C beef (or venison) stock
- 1/4 C red wine
- 2 crushed juniper berries
- 2 t fresh rosemary, chopped
- 2 T crème fraîche
- For serving: seared kale and juniper-scented mashed potatoes
Salt and pepper the venison medallions. Set aside at room temperature for half an hour.
Heat a splash of olive oil and 3 T butter in a large, flat-bottom pan over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onions, then sear the venison on all sides. This should take 2 to 3 minutes on each side of the medallion. Set aside and let rest while you made the sauce.
Add the shallot to the pan and saute for with the onions. Add the mushroom and cook until softened and caramelized. Pour the gin, stock, and red wine into the pan; add in the crushed juniper berries. Raise the heat and let the sauce reduce by one half. Turn off the heat, fold in the rosemary, then whisk in the crème fraîche.
To serve, plate your mashed potatoes. Place seared kale on top of the potatoes and lay the medallion over the kale. Spoon the sauce over the top and finish with some more salt and pepper, if desired.
Find Justin Vineyards & Winery
on the web
*Disclosure: I did receive sample wines from Benson Marketing Group for the purpose of creating pairings and developing recipes. But no additional compensation was received and opinions are completely my own.