Chargrilled Venison with Cauliflower, Cherry Sauce and Anchovy

3:00 pm on 12 February 2016
Chargrilled venison

Dariush Lolaiy's chargrilled venison Photo: Dariush Lolaiy


  • 400g Venison leg meat or loin
  • 1 cauliflower
  • 1 shallot (fine dice)
  • 20g butter
  • 200ml milk
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 30g pine nuts (cooked in butter until golden)
  • 50g raisins (soaked in cream sherry for 48hours)
  • Handful of flat parsley (chopped)
  • A small tin of anchovies
  • 1/2 a lemon for juicing

    For the spice rub:
  • 3g star anise
  • 5g chopped rosemary
  • 3g garlic powder
  • 3g black pepper
  • 3g sugar
  • 3g salt
  • For the cherry sauce:
  • 500g dark sweet cherries (pitted)
  • 100ml Port

    Spice bag:
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 5 peppercorns
  • 1 allspice berry
  • 100g sugar


Cut 1/2 the cauliflower into florets, then slice those into 3mm cross sections.

Toss with a little olive oil, season and reserve for later.

Sweat the shallots in olive oil.

Cut the remaining cauliflower into small pieces and sauté in a pot with butter, add any off cuts from the sliced florets.

Season and gently cook on a low heat covered with a cartouche.

After 8 minutes add the milk and cook for a further 20 minutes until the cauliflower is completely soft.

Strain the cauliflower, and keep the cooking liquor.

Use a stick blender to blend until it’s completely smooth, add the cooking liquor to achieve a purée consistency.

Check seasoning.


Cherry sauce
Macerate the cherries in sugar with the spice bag for 30 minutes, stir occasionally.

Add the port and cook on a low heat for 20 minutes. Remove and discard the spice bag.

Set aside half the cherries and blend the remaining cherries and liquid.

When smooth, return the reserved cherries to the sauce.


Season the venison with the spice rub 48 hours in advance of cooking.

Just before cooking the venison, rub with a little more olive oil.

Sear it on a hot grill for about a minute each side.

Roast in a preheated 220 degree oven for two minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 33 degrees.

Rest the venison for five minutes. 

While the venison is in the oven, grill the sliced cauliflower for about 20 seconds each side. It should have visible grill lines, and still be crunchy.

In a small bowl toss the grilled cauliflower with pine nuts, parsley and sherry soaked raisins.

Season with salt and lemon juice.

To serve
Slice the venison, pour over the cherry sauce and scatter with the grilled cauliflower and pine nuts. Serve with cauliflower puree and a few twisted anchovies.

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm

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