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Sauteed Reindeer

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A reindeer and a reindeer steak

If mämmi is Finland's worst culinary crime, then sautéed reindeer is something that surely makes up for it. It is extremely simple to prepare and is a dish you can't really spoil unless you try very hard. Some people have mixed feelings about eating reindeer, but don't worry; Santa Claus won't hold it against you if you try it1. If you have difficulties obtaining reindeer you can use any other deer/venison you find - they don't taste that different after all.

Reindeer is considered to be 'healthy eating', since it contains very little fat. It is also ethically sound, since reindeer pasture in the forests enjoying almost complete freedom. Twice a year they are gathered up and are marked as either newly born or ready to be slaughtered.


For sautéed reindeer you'll need:


  1. Start by melting the chunk of butter in a large frying pan.

  2. Then simply fry the meat and add some black pepper.

  3. When the meat is done add some beer, turn the heat to low, put the lid on and drink the excess beer.

  4. Let the reindeer stew for 30-60 minutes.


Sautéed reindeer is best accompanied by mashed potatoes and crushed lingonberries or cranberries. Again if you can't find lingonberries or cranberries, any berry with sharp flavour works just fine. As a drink, beer is your number one option, but wine works well too, especially extremely dry Finnish white wine.

1Though Rudolph might.2Practically any part of the reindeer will do.

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