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Poronui recipe series: Venison and Cherry Tomato Ragu
– Cuisine

“When people talk about eating venison, it’s the back straps they generally think of. But, in my opinion, there are better cuts to eat! My favorites would be rump or topside. These cuts can be eaten in a wide variety of ways. This is one of my kitchen staples that is easy to put together and tastes great.”

Venison and Cherry Tomato Ragu
by Chef Steven Paterson


  • 1kg venison, diced
  • Seasoned flour
  • 4 red onions, finely sliced
  • 8 juniper berries
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 star anise
  • 6 sprigs of rosemary
  • 1 tbsp of tomato purée
  • 250ml of red wine
  • 2 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 1L beef stock
  • 500g of piccolo cherry tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper


Lightly coat the venison in seasoned flour. Warm a large ovenproof pan over medium heat and add a drizzle of oil.

Once hot, add small amounts of the venison, cooking until they are caramelized and golden brown. Then, lift out into a bowl and repeat until all the venison is done.

Lower the heat and add a little more oil to the same pan. Add the sliced onions and sweat down gently for a few minutes while you crush the juniper berries.

Add the berries, bay leaf, seasoning, and star anise into the pan with the onions. Lastly, finely cut the rosemary and add this to the pan. Cook for a further minute.

Place the venison back in the pan and add the tomato puree and the red wine. Bring to the boil and simmer until the liquid has almost disappeared. Add the stock, bring to the boil again, and then turn down to a simmer. Cook for about 45 minutes until the meat is very tender.

Preheat your oven to 200°C.

Add the whole tomatoes to the mix and place the whole dish in the oven for 20 minutes.

To serve: this is great tossed through pappardelle pasta or served with some buttery mashed potatoes.

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