Slow-cooked Game Stew

The following recipe is perfect for our cold weather and would go well with any of our red wines from this month’s Wine Club selection. Bon Appétit!

Recipe adapted from John Ash: Cooking One on One.

  • 3 TBL or more of duck fat for searing
  • 2 ½ lbs. stew meat, elk, venison, antelope…
  • 16 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 ½ – 2 TBLS cracked black pepper (Not ground: put several tablespoons of black peppercorns in a zip lock or waxed paper and smack with something heavy.)
  • 4 cups canned diced tomatoes with their juice (We used whole San Marzano tomatoes squished by hand into small chunks.)
  • 2 or so cups red, full-bodied wine
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves or ¼ cup dried basil
  • Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 275.

Heat the fat in a heavy-bottomed Dutch oven over high heat; brown the meat well on all sides, working in batches. (Set browned meat aside.) After browning meat, add tomatoes to empty pot, scraping up all that good stuff stuck to the bottom and sides of the pot. It’s called frond, and it’s a lot of flavor for any stew. Add the garlic, pepper, wine and basil. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and add meat. Simmer for a couple of minutes, cover and place in the oven. Cook tightly covered for 8-10 hours. Check occasionally and if the liquid begins to cook away add a little boiling water or broth and turn down the oven. Even easier is to cook this in your crock-pot for 10 hours on low. Start in the AM and when you get back from skiing, cook up some mashed potatoes, polenta or pasta… dinner.

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