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To make the sauce, heat 1 tbsp of the butter in a large frying pan, tip in the onion and cook over a low heat for about 10 mins until soft. Add the garlic and mushrooms, increase the heat and fry until all the liquid has evaporated.
Meanwhile, heat enough oil to come 4-5in up the sides of a large saucepan. When hot, add the chips and cook, in batches, for 3-5 mins until golden. Remove and drain on kitchen paper, but keep the oil hot.
Add the paprika, tomato purée and flour to the mushrooms, cook for 1 min then add the brandy, if using, and leave to bubble away for a further 1-2 mins. Be careful as the brandy may set alight. Pour in the beef stock and set over a high heat to reduce by half. Stir in the soured cream and parsley, then season. Keep the sauce warm while you cook the venison.
Heat the remaining butter in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Season the venison and cook for 3 mins on each side for medium-rare, depending on the thickness of the meat. Remove from the pan and leave to rest, loosely covered with foil.
Tip the fries back into the hot oil and cook for a further 2-3 mins to crisp up. Drain and season with salt. Serve the steaks with the sauce poured over and a pile of fries on the side.