A toast – with wine – to autumn

A special about Dutch wines naturally requires a dish with Dutch wine. And while we’re at it, it’s nice if it’s a bit of a Dutch dish, isn’t it? By the way, I don’t want to be too difficult, but how nice would it be if it was a dish where you can also eat very well (Dutch, of course) can drink wine with it?

check. check. check. With this recipe for venison steak with blackberry sauce and roasted Brussels sprouts with chestnuts, we are on the right track. Even when it comes to the time of year. The deer hunting season is underway and if you look around a bit during your daily limited lockdown walk, you will see that there are still beautiful, plump, deep purple blackberries hanging here and there. Not to mention the chestnuts that literally fall from the trees these days.

You do need sweet chestnuts, don’t you? You can recognize them by their furry husks, which look like curled up hedgehogs – unlike horse chestnuts, which have a spiky husk. To peel them, make a cross in the flat side with a sharp knife and cook them in a pan of water for 3 – 5 minutes. Or you buy them peeled ready-to-use.

Which wine shall we open for this? Two tips: the LingeRood 2017, Cuvée Signature from Betuws Wijndomein (Regent and Cabernet Cortis) or De Linie Rood 2019 from wine domain De Linie (Pinot Noir and a Cabernet crossing). Both wines are for sale online.

Venison steak with blackberry sauce, roasted Brussels sprouts and chestnuts

For the meat and sauce

100 g of butter;
3 shallots, chopped;
1 bottle of (Dutch) red wine (+ the same to drink with it);
2 sprigs of parsley;
1 sprig of thyme ;
1 bay leaf;
1 clove;
1 slice of ginger root;
250 ml game stock (from a jar or from the poulterer);
4 (Dutch) venison steaks, each 125 – 150 g;
1 tbsp olive oil;
200 g blackberries;
2 tl bloem

For the Brussels sprouts and chestnuts

800 g large sprouts, cleaned and halved;
200 g sweet chestnuts (shelled weight), halved;
leaves from a few sprigs of fresh thyme;
2 tbsp olive oil

Heat preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Melt 30 g butter in a saucepan and fry the shallots until translucent. Add the wine, parsley, thyme, bay leaf, cloves and ginger and let the liquid reduce over a gentle heat until a third is left.

Hussel the Brussels sprouts and chestnuts with 2 tbsp olive oil, the thyme, a pinch of salt and pepper. Spread them out on a baking tray lined with baking paper and roast in the oven for about 20 minutes.

sieve the reduced wine and pour it back into the pan. Add the game stock, bring to the boil again and reduce by half. Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper.

heat 40 g butter and 1 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan and fry the steaks for 1.5 to 2 minutes on each side, until they are nicely browned and rosé inside. Remove them from the pan and keep them warm under aluminum foil.

joint Add the blackberries to the wine and stock, turn the heat to high and let it cook for 1 minute. Mix the flour into the remaining 30 g butter. Gradually add this mixture to the sauce while beating with a whisk. Taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary.

divide the Brussels sprouts and chestnuts on 4 plates and place the steaks next to them. Pour a little of the blackberry sauce over the meat and serve the rest separately in a sauce bowl. If desired, also serve with a bowl of potato-celeriac puree.

Open a second bottle of wine and raise a toast to (weird, I know) autumn.