Monday, March 15, 2010

The delicious Anelope

For the less tender cuts, leg and shoulder meat for instance, braising is the only way to go. Trying to roast it, given the fact that they are essentially fat-free would result in a pretty dry roast, unless you larded the meat; a time consuming process.

For a large leg cut, such as top round, bottom round, or eye of round I would brine the meat for several hours, rinse, pat dry, and prepare a couple of different ways. You can’t go wrong with either of these methods.

1. Antelope Scaloppini: You can slice the roast, across the grain into thin, 1/2 inch pieces or steaks. The French call these thin slices Escallops. Place the slices, one by one, between layers of a zip lock plastic bag and pound thin with a meat pounder. When the slices are suitably thin it is easy to lightly flour the pieces, season, and sauté in oil or a combination of oil and butter.

a. Serve with a sauce. Deglaze the pan with a little red wine, add a little Campbell's beef Consommé, and thicken slightly with a slurry of cornstarch and water. Finish the sauce by whisking in a couple tablespoons of butter off the heat.

b. Antelope Stroganoff: A variation is to cut the pounded steaks into thin strips, about 1” wide. Flour the meat and sauté in a little oil in a large skillet. When the meat is slightly browned add one onion sliced into thin slices and one Lb. of mushrooms, quartered. Sauté the vegetables until barely tender. Add 2 cups of white wine and 1 can of Campbell’s beef Consommé. Season with salt, pepper, and a sprig of fresh thyme. Simmer for about 10 minutes, covered, until the meat is tender. Add three TBS. of sour cream and blend into the sauce. Server the dish with steamed egg noodles.

2. Braised Antelope: The other way, and probably more flavorful is to braise the roast. Liberally season with salt, pepper, and garlic the whole roast and brown in a large, heavy bottomed pot. Brown the meat on all sides. Add aromatic vegetables, such as carrots, celery, and onions cut in thick pieces. Add about 2 cups of red wine, a couple of bay leaves, a sprig or two of fresh thyme, two cups water, two cans of Campbell’s beef Consommé, and cover the pot. Simmer for two hours or until the roast is tender. Depending on the size of the roast it could take as long as 3 hours. Remove the roast from the pot and thicken the sauce with a roux.

a. A roux is a mixture of oil and flour in equal amounts by weight (4 oz of oil and 4 oz of flour). Cook the roux in a small saucepan for about 3 minutes over medium-high heat being careful not to burn the flour. Allow the roux to cool.

b. Begin whisking the roux into the hot boiling stock used to cook the roast. When the sauce is the desired thickness adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper and finish with a couple TBS. of butter, whisking it in off the heat. You can darken the sauce with a little Kitchen Bouquet. Slice the roast, place the slices on a large platter, cover with the sauce, and serve with roasted vegetables and plenty of crusty French bread.

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