venison casserole

I have been cooking this casserole for years and it is a firm family favourite.

1kg venison haunch 

100g pancetta

1 onion, finely diced

1tsp rosemary

8 juniper berries, crushed

4 cloves

1 bay leaf

pinch allspice

50ml marsala (optional)

25ml red wine vinegar 

900ml beef stock

lemon zest and flat leaf parsley, finely chopped for garnish

  • Preheat oven on gas mark 4.
  • Heat some olive oil and butter in a frying pan and brown the venison.
  • Transfer to a casserole dish.
  • Fry off the pancetta and onion.
  • Add to casserole dish with rosemary, juniper berries, cloves, bay leaf and all spice.
  • Add marsala and red wine vinegar. Stir and simmer until the liquid become syrupy.
  • Add the stock, cover and pop into the oven for around 3 hours.*
  • The meat is cooked when it is tender and falls apart. 
  • If the gravy needs thickening, mix a tablespoon of cornflour to a little cold water then add to the casserole and cook off for 10 minutes or until thickened to your preference. 
  • Serve with polenta or mashed potatoes.
  • Garnish with lemon and parsley. 

* alternatively at this stage you could transfer everything into a slow cooker, with just 450ml of stock and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 10 hours.