Smoked Venison with Fig and Polenta Loaf, Chestnut, Honey and Fennel Butter

  • Photographs David Merewether
  • Recipes

Lucinda Hamilton cooks with venison...

Delicious and Hearty

Serves 6

For the polenta loaf:

  • 30g dried figs
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 80g runny honey
  • 2 eggs separated
  • zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
  • 1 tsp orange zest, finely grated
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and grated
  • 25g pine nuts
  • 30g ground almonds
  • 50g plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 75g coarse grain polenta
  • 65ml milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 170°C.
  2. Roughly chop the figs.
  3. Put butter and honey in mixer and beat on high speed until pale and creamy.
  4. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add in the figs, zests, apple, pine nuts, almonds, flour, baking powder and polenta.
  5. Mix in the milk and vanilla essence until all ingredients combined.
  6. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff. Gently fold egg whites into the batter.
  7. Spoon into buttered and lined small loaf tin and bake for about 40-50 minutes until skewer comes out clean.

For the butter:

  • 65g unsalted butter
  • 70g unsweetened chestnut puree
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp toasted and ground fennel seeds

To make the butter, beat all the above ingredients together until smooth. Chill until needed.

To serve: remove smoked venison from fridge about an hour before needed. Plate up with a couple of slices of warm polenta loaf with the chestnut butter on the side.


Lucinda Hamilton's catering company Cocolicious creates sweet and savoury dishes for any occasion including vintage afternoon teas, dinner parties and children's parties. To find out more, visit Cocolicious's Facebook page or email

The venison for Lucinda's recipes was supplied by The Gourmet Game Company in Rye, 07941 555989, and the smoked venison by The Weald Smokery in Flimwell, 01580 879601

  • Photographs David Merewether
  • Recipes