Hunting is a huge part of Swedish culture, so game meats are an important part of Swedish cooking. I have some friends who grew up in remote areas where eating game was an everyday occurrence, while a roast chicken was for special occasions.
It makes sense when you live in far-flung parts of the country (Sweden is more than 1,500km long – its length, if turned on its head, would reach to Rome) to turn to what’s around you rather than drive 45 minutes to a supermarket.
Venison saltimbocca / Hjort ‘saltimbocca’
Serves 2–4, with sides
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
4 x 100g (3½oz) venison loin medallions
A knob of butter
3 red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
12 fresh sage leaves
8 rashers smoked streaky bacon
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
125ml (4fl oz) white wine
Sautéed potatoes, to serve
Remove the venison from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking to get it to room temperature. Heat the butter in a frying pan.
Add the onions and a pinch of salt and sweat over a low heat for 10-15 minutes until soft. Set aside. In the meantime, line a chopping board with clingfilm over them. Use a rolling pin to bash the medallions until they’re 1cm thick.
Press a few sage leaves on top of each, then wrap 2 bacon rashers around each of the pieces and secure with a toothpick or wooden skewer.
Place a pan over a medium heat. Once hot, add the oil and cook the venison for 3-4 minutes each side.
In the last 2 minutes, deglaze the pan with the wine – pour it in and scrape up any crispy bits sticking to the bottom. Simmer for 1 minute, then return the onions to the pan to warm through.
Remove the meat to a plate and leave to rest for 2 minutes before slicing. Serve the venison with any resting juices poured back over it and with the onions and some sautéed potatoes.
Get ahead / You can prep the venison the day before you want to cook it and keep it well wrapped in the fridge.
Originally featured in The Daily Mail.
Recipe from my latest cookbook The Little Swedish Kitchen. Order it on amazon now!
Image: David Loftus | Styling: Frankie Unsworth | Prop Styling: Linda Berlin