Broad bean & venison warm salad

Broad bean & venison warm salad

A Year of Practiculture
Rohan Anderson & Kate Berry

One thing I love about a lifestyle of eating what you have in season is that you invariably come across some combinations that just seem to work brilliantly. Often recipes come from nothing more than having to make a meal with what you have on hand – this is probably the basis for most of my cooking. I had a bunch of slow-cooked venison meat in the fridge, a bag of fresh broad (fava) beans from Mum’s garden and a good cache of onions. And thus this meal was born. It was such a winner it’s now on the menu for the kids. When the kids remember a recipe I take it as one I should memorise, write down or photo-document.

Hah! I got my kids to eat broad beans. Sucked in, dudes.


Quantity Ingredient

The venison

Quantity Ingredient
small venison shoulder
100g lard
100g butter
handful sage
handful thyme
cracked black pepper, to taste
250ml red wine

The salad

Quantity Ingredient
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
4 onions, chopped
350g podded broad beans, boiled and peeled
handful mint, chopped, plus extra to garnish
handful tarragon, chopped
2 preserved lemons, skins only, finely chopped
200g goat’s feta, crumbled
sumac, to taste
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
chives, snipped, to garnish


  1. Preheat a hooded barbecue to low or the oven to 125°C.
  2. To prepare the venison, sit the shoulder on large-sized aluminium foil, making sure the bottom is as watertight as possible and bending up the sides to make a rough bowl shape. Break up the lard and butter and spread it out around the meat. Add the herbs and pepper, and pour over the wine. Tightly wrap the shoulder in the foil – the idea is that the foil will prevent the meat drying out. Wild venison can be quite dry if not cooked with some form of moisture, so the lard, butter and wine all help. They also add mega-flavour.
  3. Transfer to a baking tray and cook for 2–5 hours in the barbecue or oven. It’s ready when it’s falling off the bone and is obviously easy to chew ;-). When the venison is done, remove from the heat and set aside to rest for 30 minutes.
  4. While the deer is resting, start preparing the salad. Heat a generous glug of olive oil in a frying pan over low–medium heat, then cook the onions for 30 minutes. The slow-cooked onions will add a sweet element to the mix. Stir constantly but not OCD-style. No offence.
  5. Remove the venison from the bone, pulling it apart into smaller pieces, and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the broad beans, herbs, sweet slow-fried onions and preserved lemon, and stir through.
  6. Top with the feta and a sprinkle of sumac, season to taste, garnish with the extra mint and the chives, and serve.
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