Parmigiana venison schnitzels

By Paul Barker
Serves 6

1 dessertspoon butter

3-4 cloves garlic - finely chopped

810g tomatoes

2 bacon stock cubes

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup dry white wine

1 cup water

1 teaspoon sugar

4-5 fresh basil leaves

salt and freshly ground black pepper

6 venison steaks

plain flour



1 egg

1 teaspoon olive oil

100ml milk

1 cup fine breadcrumbs

tasty melting cheese


1 To prepare the sauce, gently heat the butter in a saucepan. Add the garlic and gently cook for about 2 minutes or until tender.

2 Puree the tomatoes with a mouli tool, or push them through a medium-fine sieve to remove the skins and core pieces, achieving a smooth, fine texture. Add to the garlic butter and increase the heat a little.

3 Crumble the bacon stock cubes into the pan, then add the tomato paste, wine, water, sugar and basil leaves, and season.

4 Bring the sauce to the boil, stirring frequently, then reduce the heat to a slow simmer and stir from time to time for 1 hour or so until the sauce reduces by about one-third. The sauce can be cooled and refrigerated or even frozen and then reheated when required.

5 With a meat mallet or similar implement, gently flatten each steak to about 4mm in thickness. Trim off any tissue from around the edges to prevent the meat from curling during cooking.

6 Lightly dust each steak with plain flour that has been seasoned with a small amount of sage and oregano.

7 In a shallow bowl, beat together the egg, olive oil and milk. In a shallow tray or on a plastic sheet, evenly spread the breadcrumbs.

8 Immerse each flour-coated steak in the egg and milk mix, making sure there are no dry patches, then press each steak into the breadcrumbs to evenly coat both sides.

9 Once all of the steaks have been crumbed, refrigerate them for a couple of hours. This should result in a crisp coating that won’t separate from the meat during cooking.

10 In a heavy-based pan, add enough oil to a depth of about 3 to 4mm over a fairly high heat. Cook the schnitzels to medium rare; the meat should be light pink in colour and the breadcrumbs golden brown. Cook in batches if necessary.

11 Meanwhile, warm up the tomato sauce.

12 Cover the schnitzels with a thin layer of cheese and pour over the tomato sauce.