Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Venison Tenderloin w/ Walnut, Parmesan, Herb Crust

This little piece of meat terrified me.  No joke.  It is strange that a little over a pound of meat (2 tenderloins) has the power to reduce me to quivering procrastination.  Because venison has next to no fat, it can over cook in an instant. The second it gets a hair past medium, it is basically ruined.  Honestly, you don't really want to cook it past medium-rare.  I took a couple of deep breaths, relaxed, and took it easy.... and it couldn't have been more perfect.

If don't have venison tenderloin, this crust would be great on pork tenderloin, even beef or chicken.  It is earthy, bright, and fresh.

Venison Tenderloin w/ Walnut, Parmesan, Herb Crust
2 venison tenderloins (between 1 1/4 and 1 1/2 lbs)
sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
1/2 C freshly grated parmesan*
1/4 C walnuts, finely chopped
1/4 C chopped parsley
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lrg garlic clove, pasted
1 tsp dried rosemary
zest 1/2 lemon

   Combine parmesan, walnuts, herbs, garlic, lemon zest, and oil.
   Bring venison to room temp.  Liberally salt and pepper tenderloins.
   Heat a little oil over medium-hi heat in a large skillet.  Sear tenderloins on all sides.  It should not take more than 60-90 seconds per side. (I feel like small tenderloins have 3 sides.)
   Place tenderloins on a baking sheet.  Top with crust.  It will be loose, just press it down so it sits on top.
   400 deg F for 10 minutes for med-rare.
   Let it rest for 3-5 minutes.
   Serves 4.

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