This is another adapted recipe from Matthew Kenney’s “Big City Cooking.” The original recipe calls for venison and peaches or nectarines. Nectarines were in season and we had caribou in the freezer so I went that route. While overall very tasty, make sure to really grind down your spices or they can overpower.
- 1/4 cup finely ground juniper berries
- 1/4 cup finely ground star anise
- 1 caribou loin
- 4 cups ruby port
- 1 cup game stock
- 8 sprigs rosemary
- 4 ripe nectarines
- 1 tbsp butter
In a small bowl, combine the juniper berries and star anise. Season the caribou with salt and pepper and then coat in the juniper berry mix, reserving 1-2tbsp of the mix for the sauce. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the port to a boil. Decrease the heat to a simmer and reduce to 1/2 cup. Put the reduction in a small bowl and rinse out the pan. Add stock to the pan and reduce to 1/4 cup.
In the same pan, combine port, stock and 1-2 rosemary sprigs. Season with salt and pepper. Add the reserved juniper berry mix. Keep warm over low heat.
Heat grill to medium-high.
Place the remaining rosemary on the grill until they just catch fire and remove. Place the caribou on the grill and top with scorched rosemary. Cook to medium- rare. Discard rosemary post cooking.
Brush the fruit halves with oil and grill until just tender (about 3-4 minutes per side).
Just before serving, remove the rosemary from the sauce and add the butter. To serve, place fruit and sliced caribou on a plate and top with sauce.