Recipe courtesy of Josiah Citrin

Roasted Venison with Poached Quinces in a Vanilla Orange Broth, Sweet and Sour Cabbage and a Pomegranate Sauce

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 20 min
  • Prep: 15 min
  • Cook: 1 hr 5 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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3 fresh quinces, peeled and cut into 6 wedges, seeds removed

1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice

1 vanilla bean

1 teaspoon fennel seed

2 star anise

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon butter, plus 3 tablespoons

1 red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 red cabbage, sliced

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 cup raspberry vinegar

2 cups port wine

1/2 cup red wine

Salt and pepper

1/4 cup chicken stock

Pomegranate Sauce:

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon cracked black pepper

1 cup port wine

1/2 cup red wine

1/2 cup veal or chicken stock

1/4 cup pomegranate molasses

1 tablespoon butter

1/4 cup pomegranate seeds

Salt and pepper

To finish:

6 (6-ounce) portions venison loin

Salt and pepper

Olive oil

Chopped chives, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the sliced quinces in an ovenproof pan. Add the orange juice, vanilla bean, fennel seed, star anise, and sugar. Bring to a boil. Cover and put in the oven. Cook until when pierced with a small knife there is no resistance, about 20 minutes. Strain liquid into another pan and reduce by one-half. Set aside reduced liquid and quinces.
  2. Cabbage: In a medium size pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add the red onions and sweat until soft. Add the cabbage and mix well. Let cook for 3 minutes, or until the cabbage has softened a bit. Deglaze with both vinegars and let reduce until dry. Add the port wine and reduce until almost all the port is gone. Add the red wine and reduce until just a little liquid remains. Season, to taste, and set aside.
  3. Venison Sauce: Heat a heavy-duty saucepan. Add the sugar and caramelize. Deglaze with vinegar and pepper. Reduce until almost all the liquid has evaporated. Add the port and reduce by 3/4, then add the red wine and reduce by 1/2. Add the stock and reduce until thick and syrupy. The sauce should coat the back of a spoon. Add the pomegranate molasses and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  4. To finish: Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Season venison steaks with salt and pepper. Heat a large saute pan over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and sear the venison on both sides. Place in the oven for 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest over a wire rack.
  5. To serve: Reheat the quinces in the reduced orange juice with 1 tablespoon butter.
  6. Reheat the cabbage in 1/4 cup chicken stock and the remaining 3 tablespoons butter.
  7. Reheat the sauce and whisk in 1 tablespoon of butter, add the pomegranate seeds and season, to taste.
  8. Heat 6 large dinner plates and place a mound of cabbage in the center. Leave 3 pieces of quince on cabbage at equal distance from each other. Slice the venison into 3 pieces against the grain. Place the venison between the quinces. Nap the plate with the sauce. Sprinkle with chives and serve.