Venison for Christmas
Corn, dairy, egg, gluten, lactose, nut, soya & wheat free
This is a lovely rich casserole, idea for a wintery Christmas night. The coconut oil give the sauce velvety smoothness and the long slow cooking make the venison deliciously tender. The flavour will be greatly improved if you make the casserole the day before you want to eat it and allow it to rest overnight.
The cooking of this casserole formed part of our Christmas party video.
- 1 kilo stewing venison, cut into moderate size chunks
- 2 level teaspoons coriander seeds, lightly crushed
- 1 level teaspoon green peppercorns
- 4 bay leaves
- 250 ml red wine
- 125 ml port
- 10 shallots or torpedo shallots
- 2 heaped tablespoons coconut oil
- 3 slices of fatty smoked bacon, chopped small
- 100g cranberries
- 100ml stock – from the bones if you got them from the butcher or else proprietary – but remember to check the ingredients
- 500g fir apple potatoes, or, if you cannot get fir apples, other small firm potatoes that will hold their shape – sliced into thick rounds
- 300g Brussels sprouts
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Put the venison on a large bowl with the coriander seeds and pepper corns, well mixed in. Pour over the red wine and the port, cover and leave to marinate in a cool place for 12-24 hours.
- Peel the shallots
- Heat the coconut oil in a heavy casserole and add the shallots and the bacon and fry moderately briskly for 5–10 minutes without burning but until the bacon is crispy and the shallots nicely browned.
- Turn up the heat and, using a slotted spoon, add the venison to the casserole and allow it to sear for a few minutes, then add the marinade.
- Add the stock and the cranberries, bring to the boil, cover and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.
- Simmer gently, covered, for 2–3 hours and then add the potatoes and continue to cook for another 30–45 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked.
- Ideally leave to cool and leave in a cool place overnight.
- An hour before you want to serve the casserole, reheat it gradually and season to taste. Then add the trimmed Brussels sprouts and allow to cook in the juices. You want them to be just cooked so still very slightly crunchy.
- Check seasoning before serving and serve in large bowls – best eaten with a spoon!
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