Juniper Berry-Crusted Rack of Venison with Mostarda

Juniper Berry-Crusted Rack of Venison with Mostarda
Juniper Berry-Crusted Rack of Venison with Mostarda, Late Winter Feast
Searing the venison before coating it with spices ensures that the spices retain their potency but don't burn before the venison is cooked. A sweet and sour pear and berry mostarda is the perfect condiment for this lean roast.Bill Phelps

Searing the venison before coating it with spices ensures that the spices retain their potency but don't burn before the venison is cooked. A sweet and sour pear and berry mostarda is the perfect condiment for this lean roast.

Juniper Berry-Crusted Rack of Venison with Mostarda
Searing the venison before coating it with spices ensures that the spices retain their potency but don't burn before the venison is cooked. A sweet and sour pear and berry mostarda is the perfect condiment for this lean roast.
Yield: serves 4

For the Mostarda

  • 1 13 cups sugar
  • 12 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. ground mustard
  • 3 tbsp. yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 12 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 14 cup dried cherries
  • 14 cup dried currants
  • 2 firm pears, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 (2"-piece) ginger, peeled and minced
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange grated zest of 1 orange

For the Venison

  • 13 cup juniper berries
  • 13 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 tbsp. whole black peppercorns, plus ground to taste
  • 1 tbsp. caraway seeds
  • 1 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 rack venison (with 8 bones), bones frenched

Instructions

  1. Make the mostarda: Whisk sugar, vinegar, ground mustard, mustard seeds, cinnamon, and 2 cups water in a 4-qt. saucepan. Stir in remaining ingredients; boil. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until pears are tender and liquid is thickened, about 45 minutes. Let cool.
  2. Make the venison: Heat oven to 475°. Combine juniper berries, 14 cup oil, salt, peppercorns, and caraway and coriander seeds in a food processor; pulse into a wet, gravel-like consistency and set aside. Add remaining oil and the butter to a 12" ovenproof skillet; heat over medium-high. Season venison with salt and pepper; cook, turning as needed, until browned, 8–10 minutes. Coat rack with reserved juniper berry mixture; roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the rack reads 140°, about 30 minutes for medium-rare. Let venison rest 5 minutes before carving; serve with mostarda.