New Zealand Venison

Rare roasted venison with beetroot and garlic salad

Serves: 6     Preparation: 1 hour     Time to cook: 20 mins    



1 kg topside venison from the Denver leg, trimmed (the Denver leg is a collection of the rump, topside and silver-side from the top of the back leg)
olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper


extra virgin olive oil
18 -24 cherry tomatoes
6 rashers of rindless streaky bacon or pancetta cut into matchsticks
4 golden shallots, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
salt and pepper
4 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
half a lemon, juiced
1 handful flat leaf parsley


12 medium sized beetroot, washed - save the beetroot leaves
olive oil for cooking
salt and pepper
2 sprigs of thyme
1 head of garlic broken into individual cloves, with the skin on


Beetroot leaves - optional

beetroot leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
squeeze of lemon juice

Recipe by Tom Kime

Takes an hour from start to finish. The beetroots take about an hour, or until they are soft to the point of a knife. The meat takes about 20 minutes to cook. By cooking the meat as one piece it is really easy to cook and then slice.  90% of the meat should be medium rare.

The beetroot

Heat an oven to 200 ̊C. Put the scrubbed beetroot in a roasting tray with a little oil, salt and pepper and the sprigs of thyme and garlic cloves. Add 125ml of water to create some steam for them to cook in and keep them moist. Tightly cover the tray with foil and seal well. Cook for about an hour or until the beetroots are tender to the point of a knife.

When the beetroot is cooked, carefully remove the foil and return the pan to the oven for a further five minutes. Add any beetroot juices to the sauce. (Peeling the beetroot is optional, if they were cleaned well before cooking; the roast skin is delicious).

Cut the roast veg. into quarters or halves depending on the size.

The sauce

Heat a little oil in a saucepan and fry the cherry tomatoes until golden, - about 5 minutes. Remove the tomatoes from the pan and then fry the bacon for 3 minutes until it is beginning to colour. Add the chopped shallots and the garlic. Cook gently for another 4 minutes, until they are soft and beginning to caramelise. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, remove from the heat and add the fried tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, and the olive oil. Leave the sauce to steep in a warm place to let all the flavours blend together (like brewing tea).

The venison

Heat a chargrill 25 minutes before serving. Rub the venison with a little olive oil and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Place the venison on the chargrill at the top of the pan furthest away from you. Sear on a high heat for 2 minutes, roll the venison 90 degrees towards you and sear for another 2 minutes. Repeat until the bar marks cover the piece of meat.

Move to a roasting tray and roast for about 10 minutes. It will be medium rare. Rest for 3 minutes before slicing. Add any meat juices to the sauce.

The beetroot leaves are delicious if available. Trim off the stems and wash the leaves.  Fry a little garlic and add the leaves. Quickly braise the leaves and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and a little squeeze of lemon juice. They will only take a couple of minutes to cook. Serve with the beetroot and garlic.

To serve

This looks spectacular on a large platter on the centre of the table for your guests to help themselves to.

Slice the venison and arrange it in the centre of the plate surrounded by the roast beetroot and the garlic cloves. Add the chopped parsley to the sauce and spoon over everything.