Purple Kitchen Treats

Over the past few years, I have been working on a cookbook. During this time, I took time off to finish my Master's Degree. Now that I have accomplished that, I am working again on my cookbook, slowly but surely.

However, over the past few months, something interesting has happened...I have received multiple requests for baked goods, particularly my cookies. I am also receiving multiple requests for granola. So, with all these requests in mind, I have started to make my cookies for sale, along with my granola.

My official web site is available, but will be undergoing a significant redesign. Be sure to visit my "official" web site at: http://www.susanshonk.com and watch for some exciting changes.

From the heart of my purple kitchen to you,

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Venison Stew

A new friend asked me for a recipe that included Venison.  Since my only experience with venison is as a tenderloin or a sausage, I decided to use a tried and true recipe that mimicked a New England Pot Roast dinner, but to finish the dish with a decidedly different twist and create a stunning gravy for a majestic creature, the deer.

Servings:  6 - 8
Time:  Approx. 3 hours
Difficulty:  Easy

3 pounds venison, cut into 2 -3 inch chunks
3/4 cup flour, set aside 1/4 cup
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
Vegetable oil
3 Bay leaves
3 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 - 3 quarts chicken stock
1 medium yellow turnip, peeled and cut into chunks
1 pound of carrots, peeled and cut into 3 pieces
1 pound of baby red russet potatoes, washed
12 ounces of button mushrooms, whole
1 pound of pearl onions, frozen 
1/4 cup room temperature butter
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 300' F

  1. Begin by drying off the venison in paper towels to remove excess moisture.
  2. Mix the flour, salt and pepper together and toss the meat with the flour mixture, set aside.  Heat the Dutch oven on the stovetop on medium heat, add enough vegetable oil to the pan to coat the bottom.  Shake off any excess flour before placing the meat in the pan to brown.   Begin browning the venison in small batches, and set aside on a platter.
  3. When all the meat has been browned, turn the heat on low, place the meat back in the Dutch oven and add the bay leaves, fresh rosemary, dried oregano and garlic and cook on low for 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken stock and cover.  Bring to a slow simmer then add the turnip and transfer the pan to the oven.  Let this cook for 45 minutes.
  4. Add the carrots and russet potatoes, cover and cook another 45 minutes in the oven.
  5. Add the mushrooms and pearl onions, cook another 45 minutes.  At this point, check the meat for desired tenderness.  If the meat is not as tender as you would like, return the stew to the oven for an additional 30 minutes.  
  6. Once the meat is tender, remove the meat and veggies onto a serving platter with a large slotted spoon leaving as much of the cooking liquid as possible in the pan.
  7. Mix the 1/4 cup flour with the 1/4 cup butter until a paste forms.  Place the pan back on the stove top on medium low heat and add the butter and flour mixture, whisking to incorporate.  When the sauce thickens and turns glossy, taste for seasoning, pour the gravy over the platter of meat and vegetables and serve.
  8. Most importantly, fish out the bay leaves so your guests won't have to.
Serving suggestions:
  • Serve in a hollowed out bread boule or with a rustic and hearty bread broken into chunks.

  1. Be sure to remove excess moisture from any meat the you cook.  This will keep the meat from "stewing" in it's own juices and will help the meat to brown.
  2. Be sure to season the flour that coats the meat.  Seasoning at this stage helps set the depth of flavor in motion throughout the entire dish.
The addition of the buerre mariner (butter and flour paste) really made this dish stand out.  It created a glossy and smooth sauce with a great mouth feel.  

From the heart of my purple kitchen to you,