A local Italian Restaurant that we visit from time to time has the most amazing dishes that involve “Francese”…Snapper Francese, Chicken Francese and Veal Francese. I have had them all and LOVED all of them! For those that have never had or heard of “francese” dishes, it is a meat that is lightly battered and browned in a pan, then a sauce is deglazed from that pan, combining lemon, butter and white wine. I loved the dish so much that we went home and made chicken francese as a trial run. Then I decided to take it off-road…with venison!
What you will need:
Trimmed and clean venison tenderloins, sections of backstrap, or cube steak (I recommend the tenderloins)
2-3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 sliced lemon
1/2 cup lemon juice (bottled or fresh squeezed)
dry white wine
Cooked pasta of your choice (we used angel hair)
To start, your choice of cut of venison needs to be thin, about 1/4″-1/2″ thick. For this cook, I used venison tenderloin, and I sliced them in half, then pounded them with a meat mallet. Put a small amount of olive oil in a skillet, enough to cover but not submerge the thin sliced venison, and place it on high heat in order to get it hot. An iron skillet is the best.
Put a cup of flour in a mixing bowl and add the seasonings to taste. A good measure is a teaspoon of each. In another mixing bowl, beat the eggs with a whisk. Add 1/4 cup parmesan cheese to the beaten eggs and a 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Mix well. Cut 1/2 stick of butter into 4 equal pieces, place them into the flour and fully coat them with flour. Set aside to be used later. Dredge the tenderloin pieces in the flour, then submerge in the egg mixture. Then place the coated pieces into the hot olive oil and lightly brown on each side. Be careful not to over cook them.
After removing the meat from the olive oil, put 1 tablespoon of minced garlic into the oil and saute for about 1 minute. Add 4 or 5 lemon slices to the pan, then add 1/2 cup dry white wine and deglaze the pan. Add about 1 cup of chicken stock to the pan, and follow with 1/2 cup of lemon juice. Next, add the floured slices of butter to the pan and mix well. Reduce the heat and continue to whisk to thicken the sauce to a gravy consistency. Add BBQ rub, onion powder, salt and pepper to taste.
Place the pieces of fried tenderloin onto a bed of pasta and cover with a liberal amount of the lemon butter sauce. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and enjoy!