Fallow Deer: Cauliflower, Chocolate, and Quince

Adapted by StarChefs.com
March 2012
Yield: 4-6 servings


Fallow Deer Fillets
10 150-gram filets of fallow deer loin
150 grams butter
10 juniper berries (seeds removed and chopped)
10 grams Douglas fir pine needles, chopped
10 grams thyme, chopped
Deer Tartare
200 grams fallow deer loin trimmings
Small caper berries
1 shallot, diced
1 gherkin, diced
kosher salt
Quince Terrine
5 large quince
300 grams castor sugar
300 grams cold water
Caramelized Cauliflower Purée
500 grams cauliflower, chopped
100 grams butter
25 grams sunflower oil
100 grams white chicken stock
kosher salt
Roast Cauliflower Florets
1 head cauliflower cut into tiny florets
sunflower oil
kosher salt
To Assemble and Serve
Thinly shaved cauliflower florets
Fresh watercress
chocolate for grating


For Fallow Deer Fillets:
Brown the butter and mix with juniper berries, thyme, and pine needles. Cool slightly and spread over meat. Vacuum pack the fillets and compress. Poach at 136°F for 30 minutes. Take out fillets, cleaning off aromatics, and brown on all sides on a plancha or hot pan. Season.

For the Deer Tartare:
Dice the deer trimmings and add the caper berries, shallot, and gherkin to taste.

For the Quince Terrine:
Peel the quince and slice on a mandolin to 5mm thickness. Line a 15-centimeter-by-10-centimeter terrine mold with grease-proof paper and layer the quince, making sure they overlap and are tightly packed. Cook sugar and water until a light caramel forms, then pour over the quince. Place a sheet of grease-proof paper over the top. Bake at 280ºF for 2 hours. When it comes out of the oven, Take out of the oven and place another terrine mold on top and weight down gently. Refrigerate for 1 day.

For Caramelized Cauliflower Purée:
Heat the butter and sunflower oil until foaming, then add the cauliflower and caramelize. The heat needs to be tempered so the butter never stops foaming; the caramelization should take around 1½ hours. When the cauliflower is golden brown, deglaze the pan with the chicken stock. Blend for 1 minute and season, then blend for another 30 seconds. Pass through a chinois.

For Roast Cauliflower Florets:

Warm the oil in a large frying pan. Add the butter, allowing it to foam, and then add the cauliflower florets. Cook until golden brown, then spoon onto tissue paper, allow to drain, and season.

To Assemble and Serve:
Plate Fallow Deer Fillets with Deer Tartare and Quince Terrine. Add Caramelized Cauliflower Purée and Roast Cauliflower Florets. Garnish with shaved cauliflower florets, grated chocolate, and fresh watercress.