Sugar Club’s Neil Brazier’s tips for cooking venison

Neil Brazier, executive chef of The Sugar Club and Bellota, SKYCITY Auckland. Photo: ©Michael Bradley.

Keep an eye open for two brand new videos from one of New Zealand’s top chefs showing New Zealand consumers how to cook farm-raised New Zealand venison deliciously and perfectly.

Neil Brazier, executive chef for Peter Gordon’s The Sugar Club and Bellota restaurants at SKYCITY Auckland, has teamed up with Deer Industry NZ in the preparation of the under two-minute videos. These show how to cook roast New Zealand venison perfectly, alongside a recipe for Indian-spiced venison medallions.

As he says about the easy instructions, “It’ll knock your socks off!”

The English-born Michelin-experienced chef has moved between the UK and New Zealand over past two decades. On his CV is executive chef at Kauri Cliffs in Matauri Bay, where he set up the Lodge Restaurant with Paul Jobin and owning the award-winning Pear Tree Restaurant and Bar, before he joined renowned Kiwi celebrity chef Peter Gordon’s famous restaurant The Sugar Club in 2013.

Brazier’s approach to food is very simple, he says. “It’s all about punchy flavours, fresh seasonal ingredients, cooked with respect and a touch of playfulness,” he says.

It’s evident he’s a big fan of venison. “It’s incredibly delicious and so full of flavour while being extremely melt in the mouth tender … why wouldn’t you be cooking venison at home?” he asks.

The “obvious health benefits” of eating venison over other meats include: “Low-fat, stacked with vitamins and iron, more protein than any other red meat, less fat and less calories,” he lists.

He also asks whether venison has been overlooked by people on all kinds of diet, such as for body building, for weight loss and many others. “As really when you look at it, it is the dream red meat for a person dieting. “

Venison can be used for easy quick, simple ideas with simple cooking techniques. “And, then from there, you can go as ‘foody-crazy” as you want and the venison will love you for it … as well as the people eating it,” says Brazier.

He has loved working with New Zealand venison in the production of the videos.

“It has been such fun and also incredible to open people’s eyes to venison. I find consumers are just that little scared of cooking venison even though they think it’s delicious, but I have had many, many amazing comments from people cooking these recipes and how they will make them again and again. Also, they can’t wait to show them off for the next dinner party or BBQ.”

The venison roast with this recipe is “so super quick” compared to waiting for some roast meats. “It means you can ‘whack’ it together without spending hours in the kitchen for a tasty meal after work.”

The Indian-style venison dish has been on The Sugar Club menu for some time, “And will remain on it, as the staff are so confident in selling it, it always comes back with glowing comments and people amazed with the flavour combinations.”

DINZ venison marketing manager Marianne Wilson says the videos were released in late July, when Brazier was also on Radio Live in a joint promotion with The Sugar Club. Competitions were running alongside.

You can view the Fresh farm-raised NZ Venison videos here

Freshfast Venison Roast

Freshfast Indian Flavoured Venison

This article first appeared in Deer Industry News magazine (August/September 2017) and is reproduced here with permission. Check out the magazine for more in-depth deer industry specific news.



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