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Fillet of Kangaroo with Glazed Shallots

And this one is just for fun, because we don't know where to get kangaroo around here.

2 pounds kangaroo fillet (tenderloin)
3 tablespoons clarified butter

1 bay leaf
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons virgin olive oil
12 juniper berries
6 cardamom pods
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 star anise pods
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 thyme sprigs

2 chopped golden shallots
1 tablespoon diced carrots
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped bacon
Reserved marinade liquid
4 tablespoons red wine
3/4 cup veal demi-glace (too complicated to make; get some ready made.)

2 tablespoons butter
24 golden shallots, peeled
1 bunch English spinach, washed and blanched
1 tablespoon butter
Freshly ground black pepper

To make the marinade: Crush the bay leaf or pulverize in an electric blender. Add the bay leaf to the red wine vinegar and olive oil. Mix together the marinade ingredients.

To marinate the meat: Place the meat in a suitable container and pour the marinade over it. Place in the refrigerator for 2 days, turning the meat occasionally.

To cook the meat: Scrape the marinade from the meat, reserving the liquid for the sauce. Melt the clarified butter in a frying pan or skillet and gently cook the meat over a medium heat until brown on all sides. To cook rare to medium-rare should take no more than 3 to 4 minutes. Leave the meat to stand in a warm place.

To make the sauce: Brown the sauce ingredients in the frying pan or skillet in which you have cooked the kangaroo. Deglaze the pan with the reserve marinade. Add the red wine and veal demi-glace and reduce the sauce by a third. Pass the sauce through a fine strainer.

To make the garnish: Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and gently cook the shallots until they have caramelized, approximately 20 minutes.

To prepare the spinach: Blanch the spinach in boiling water for 1 minute. Thoroughly drain, getting rid of as much excess water as possible, then heat with the butter and season with pepper.

To serve: Warm the serving plates and make a bed of spinach on each one. Carve the kangaroo and arrange on top of the spinach. Garnish with glazed shallots. Taste the sauce, adjust the seasoning and then spoon the warm sauce around the outside edge of the dish. Serves 6 to 8.

Note: Kangaroo is a very healthful meat, full of flavor, with a taste somewhere between young venison and beef. Sauces appropriate to those meats may be used with kangaroo and, conversely, venison or beef may be substituted for kangaroo in this recipe.

-- "Fine Family Cooking" by Tony Bilson,
a well-known Sydney restaurateur

Thursday, September 14, 2000

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