Seared Impala Loin from Shamwari Game Reserve

See today’s video recipe in Cindy-Leigh Goosen, the head chef at the Eastern Cape’s Shamwari Game Reserve, prepares one of her signature dishes for Louise – seared impala loin with raspberry risotto, garden vegetables and rosemary and pomegranate sauce! Scroll down for a transcript of the full recipe.

Picture: Salvelio Meyer

Shamwari head chef Cindy-Leigh Goosen. Picture: Salvelio Meyer

THE Global Table has wrapped up its World Cup Cook-off project and is already moving on to the next one – getting Eastern and Southern Cape chefs to share  their favourite recipes!

The brief? We want the region’s best chefs to share recipes that not only look fabulous on the plate, but will be easy enough for home cooks  to re-create in their own kitchens.

Salvelio and Louise will photograph each chef with their dish, and besides the recipe will also post either a profile of the chef, or a Q&A style column, on the blog every Saturday.

This weekend’s featured chef is  Cindy-Leigh Goosen, a graduate of the famed  Institute of Culinary Arts in Stellenbosch.

Cindy-Leigh started as a chef de partie at the Eastern Cape’s Shamwari Game Reserve in 2002 and  also worked at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve and the Royal Malewane Game Reserve before returning to Shamwari as a senior sous chef in 2005.  Today, she is the  executive chef of the reserve, overseeing all its kitchens, chefs and even the staff meals.

“I do all the menus and change them to incorporate seasonal items,” she says. “I love planning and organising and then seeing it all come together, almost like a Broadway production, with everyone playing their part to ensure a perfect performance.”

An important driver for Cindy-Leigh is that she enjoys teaching people and “encouraging them to become the best they can be”.

“I believe that you should trust and support the people you work with. Living in the bush is almost like being part of one big family.”

She  describes being a chef as “the most creative and satisfying job in the world”, although it can of course also deliver its fair share of stress. “I am now busy incorporating an eight-course tasting menu with wine paring to encourage my chefs to be creative and to create signature dishes for themselves.”

Her favourite ingredients? Chocolate, vanilla, balsamic vinegar, avocado oil and risotto rice.

Scroll down for a transcript of Cindy-Leigh’s full recipe for seared impala loin with raspberry risotto, garden vegetables and rosemary and pomegranate sauce – and don’t worry, it isn’t difficult to make!

* Calling all chefs! E-mail  us at liebenbergl@avusa.co.za if you would like to share a recipe and  tell us a bit about yourself.

Oicture: Salvelio Meyer

Seared impala loin with raspberry and pomegranate risotto: Salvelio Meyer

Seared Impala loin with Raspberry risotto, garden vegetables and rosemary and pomegranate sauce – The Recipe

Don’t be scared off by the length of this recipe – it really is very easy to prepare. It only looks complicated because there are quite a few separate elements to the final dish, ie the risotto, loin, sauce and veggies! This recipe serves six but do note that in the video demonstration, Cindy-Leigh has scaled it down to a dish for one.

Serves 6

Ingredients for the risotto

100g butter; ½ onion, chopped; 250g arborio rice; 300ml red wine; 150g grated parmesan cheese; 1 litre cranberry juice; 100g fresh or frozen raspberries; salt and pepper for seasoning

Method for the risotto

Heat a medium saucepan and add the butter. Fry the onions until soft and transparent.

Add the risotto rice and fry until heated through.

Add the red wine and cook while stirring, until the wine is completely reduced.

Heat the cranberry juice, then add the cranberry juice one ladle at a time until the risotto is cooked through – this takes about one hour.

Take it off the heat, add the raspberries and cheese and a bit of  butter.

Set aside until the other items are ready to be plated.

Ingredients for the rosemary and pomegranate sauce

300ml red wine; 50ml balsamic vinegar; 60g light brown sugar; some fresh rosemary; 1 large pomegranate

Method for the rosemary and pomegranate sauce

Add the wine, vinegar and sugar into a saucepan; swirl lightly to mix. Add the fresh rosemary – use the needles and not the stalk.

Add the pomegranate pips of half the pomegranate; bring to the boil and reduce the heat to a simmer.

Remove from the heat once it is thickened and set aside.

Ingredients for the vegetables

½ punnet baby marrow; ½ punnet yellow patty pans; ½ punnet rosa tomatoes; 50ml olive oil; salt and pepper

Method for the vegetables

Cut the patty pans and rosa tomatoes into quarters. Top and tail the baby marrows.

Slice in half lengthwise and then quarter.

Blanch the vegetables in boiling salt water for a few seconds; take them out of the water and flash fry in olive oil.

Season and set aside until you are ready to plate.

Ingredients for the impala loin

1 x Impala loin (about 2kg); 50g Cajun spice; 100ml olive oil; 50ml cooking oil

Method for the impala loin

Marinate the loin in the olive oil and Cajun spice for about 1 – 2 hours before cooking.

Heat the cooking oil and brown the loin on both sides.

When golden brown on both sides, put into an oven dish and place in a 200 degree Celsius oven for about 8 minutes.

Take the loin out and let it rest for about 5 minutes before slicing.

Assembling the dish (you will need to do 6 plates)

Place some risotto in a small bowl and place the bowl on a big, round dinner plate.

Dish up some vegetables; then slice the meat and place a few slices next to the vegetables.

Spoon some sauce over the meat.

Garnish with fresh basil, pomegranate pips and a fresh strawberry.

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