The Rees - True South

Recipe | Smoked Southland Venison, Cucumber, Gin, Beetroot & Dark Chocolate Oil

(As featured on TVNZ Good Morning Show | Click here to see the Episode)

Serves 4
Prep Time 1hr- 1hr30 (plus extra time to brine the venison)
Cost $4-5 (depending on the cut of meat you use)

300g Cleaned venison Loin or Denver leg
500ml water
50g Salt
25g Sugar

Manuka chips
Whisk the water, sugar and salt together until it dissolves. Add the venison and leave for a couple of hours. Remove and dry the venison then rub with oil. Smoke the venison with Manuka chips either in a closed BBQ or a turned off oven. Quickly seal the venison in a pan with a little foaming butter and reserve.
Dark Chocolate Oil
50g Grapeseed oil
10g Good Quality cocoa powder
30g Dark Chocolate
Warm the oil and cocoa powder in a pan but not to hot or you will burn the cocoa. Remove from the heat and leave to cool a little then add the chocolate. Reserve.

1-2 lg Red Beets
1tbsp brown sugar
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp Red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic
Place all ingredients in a pan and cover with water, simmer until the beets are nearly cooked. Drain and then peel the beets and cut into neat cubes. Reduce the cooking liquor down to a syrup and then pour back onto the beets. Reserve.

2 inch piece of cucumber peeled and seeds removed and then flesh cut into cubes
4 radishes ends removed and cut into wedges

20g Gin
Seeds from the cucumber
2 juniper berries
1 tsp sugar
1 lime juice
Blend together and then pass through a fine sieve. Leave the cucumber and radish to macerate until needed.

To Assemble
Wasabi powder

Thinly slice the warmed venison and place onto plate, arrange the rest neatly around. Sprinkle with the wasabi powder then drizzle around the chocolate oil. Finish with some picked watercress and spoon a little of the gin dressing around.