Here we have the culmination of some interesting spring ingredients composed as a formal entree, which would probably be the highlight of a tasting menu composed of a few other courses as well
The venison en crepinette is a really fun way to treat lean game meat. Venison steaks are trimmed and rolled in caul fat lined with a mousse made from venison trim, then rolled up and roasted.
The focus of the dish is not on the venison steak, but rather on the dryad saddle mushrooms, as they were the inspiration for the flavor pairings. As I mentioned before, dryad’s saddle mushrooms taste and smell strangely of cucumber, so we treat them in the kitchen like a cucumber, but also in any place where you would cook a mushroom.
Venison en Crepinette, Dryad Saddle Jus, Wild Rice Gnocchi, Spruce Tips
Serves 4 as a light entree, to be preceded by other courses, like a salad
- 1 recipe wild rice gnocchi recipe here
- 1 recipe venison en crepinette, (follows)
- 1 recipe dryad Saddle jus, (follows)
Dryad Saddle Jus
Makes enough sauce to garnish 4 plates
- 20z young, fresh dryad saddle mushrooms
- 2 cups meat stock, preferably homemade
- 2 tbsp diced, cold unsalted butter
- Pickled Spruce Tips. Recipe here
- Slice the dryad saddle very thin, then put them in a wide saute pan with the stock and reduce on medium-high heat until the liquid is reduced by half, seasoning to taste with salt.
- When the liquid is reduced by half, you may reserve the sauce until it is time to plate and serve.
- When it is time to plate and serve the sauce, heat it, then whisk in the cold butter until the sauce is creamy and thick and the butter is totally absorbed, you may need to adjust the heat to ensure the sauce does not break and become oily, if it does, simply add a tablespoon of cold water, increase the heat gently, and whisk vigorously, the sauce should re-emulsify and become thick.
Venison En Crepinette
- 1 recipe for venison forcemeat. Recipe here
- 1/4 cup dried lobster mushroom duxelles. Recipe here
- 4 venison strip steaks, trimmed into 2in/6inch rectangles.
- Caul Fat, any variety, trimmed into rectangles large enough to accommodate the steaks and mousseline stuffing. To figure out how much caul fat will be needed to wrap the steaks, simply roll a steak over four times (once on each side) as if you were to wrap the steak up like a present in caul fat, the picture below will help you to visualize the technique.
- Trim the caul fat to a size so that you can wrap the trimmed steaks in it individually.
- Mix the forcemeat with the prepared dried mushroom duxelle, then spread an even layer of this mixture on the caul fat. Lay the trimmed steak in the middle and roll it all up so that the stuffing forms are barrier around the meat. Season the steaks lightly with salt and pepper.
- Sear the crepinettes in a pan on medium high heat until they are golden brown on each side.
- Put the crepinettes into a preheated 250 degree oven, until they are 110 degrees.
- When the crepinettes are cooked, allow them to rest for 5 minutes on a cookie sheet or cooling rack before slicing.
Finishing and plating
- Start out by searing and roasting your crepinettes. While they are cooking, prepare the dryad saddle jus, but do not add the butter until it is time to plate.
- When the crepinettes come out of the oven to rest, start sauteing the wild rice gnocchi in a non stick or cast iron pan in a bit of butter until they are golden brown.
- Start plating by putting down some of the dryad saddle jus on each plate, followed by some wild rice gnocchi, and the pickled spruce tips. Slice the creppinettes into 2 inch slices, arrange on the plate, sprinkle with a touch of kosher salt and serve.