Venison with Asparagus and Sour Cherries

From issue #6.
Photography by Photography by Elizabeth Goodall.
Venison with Asparagus and Sour Cherries

Serves: 6


1 kilo piece venison sirloin (we recommend Cervena brand)

60 mls olive oil
½ cup sour cherry syrup
60 mls red wine vinegar
freshly ground black pepper
4 cloves garlic, crushed

5 tablespoons semi dried sour cherries or cranberries
1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
800 grams asparagus
sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Combine the marinade ingredients and pour half into a shallow dish. Add the venison and coat well. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. If you don’t have sour cherry syrup, use pomegranate molasses and adjust the amount of red wine vinegar to taste.

Salad: Mix the semi dried sour cherries and the tomatoes with the remaining marinade. Set aside. Snap off and discard the asparagus ends. Toss the asparagus in a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Heat a ridged grill and cook the asparagus until just tender. Place on a serving platter.

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Remove the meat from the marinade, pat dry and moisten with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Heat an oven proof sauté pan over a high heat and brown the meat well on all sides. Transfer to the oven and roast for 9 minutes. Turn over and roast for a further 9 minutes for medium-rare meat. Rest the meat, lightly covered, for
at least 10 minutes.

To serve: Slice the venison thinly and place on top of the asparagus. Spoon the dressing over the meat and finish with a grind of black pepper. This dish is delicious served warm or at room temperature. Serves 6 or more when part of a buffet

Sour Cherry Syrup: A product of Iran, this syrup is both sweet and tart. Traditionally served with water and ice as a cool drink, it can also be used in sauces and dressings.