Tag Archives: venison

Game Stew & Dumplings

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Game mix in the marinade

Sundays are my favourite day of the week, even though you know you’ve got to get up for work the next morning. I always feel so well rested on a Sunday and it’s my favourite day to do some cooking.

I have the advantage of living in Stockbridge and every morning there is a Stockbridge Market. It sells meats, fish, fresh vegetables and bread, sushi, coffee, vegan nibbles and lots of crafty stuff. We usually do a quick visit before walking the pup. Today I fancied something hearty and rich to start my week on a high. The meat counter had some delicious looking game mix and diced venison – that’ll do. A game stew & dumplings it is.

    • Game & venison mix
    • Bouquet garnet 
    • Fresh thyme
    • Bottle of (good) red wine
    • Bay Leaves
    • Juniper berries (can used dry ones)
    • Garlic

Marinate all these together in a casserole bowl for at least half an hour (24 hours is ideal if you have the time)

  • Plain flour
  • Diced onion, carrots and celery
  • Butter
  • Tomato puree
  • Beef stock

Separate the game mix and the marinade and lightly flour the meat. Cook on a high heat until golden brown. Take it out and put it on a plate then add a spoonful of butter to the pan and fry the onions for a couple of minutes. Turn the heat right down and add 2 tablespoons of flour and a dollop of tomato puree. Stir into a kind of paste for a minute. Then this is the nice smelling, yummy fun part – slowly add in the marinade, stirring constantly so there are no lumps. Bring this to the boil and let the mixture reduce by half. Then add 500ml of beef stock, the meat and the chopped vegetables.

Leave to slowly cook for an hour and a half, stirring occasionally. 

Whilst your stew is simmering, make the dumplings.

  • Plain flour
  • Baking powder
  • Freshly chopped parsley
  • Horseradish paste or freshly grated horseradish (both work well)
  • Salt & pepper
  • Water to mix 
Dumplings are so easy to make and taste great in a stew. They go especially well with game stews because the doughy, floury dumplings mix so well with the rich, deep flavours of the game meat. I’ve added some fresh parsley and horseradish to give the dumplings a bit of an edge and to brighten up the dish. Plus, like I said, they are just so easy to make.

Firstly mix the flour, baking powder and a large pince of salt. Then mix in the chopped parsley, horseradish and enough water to create a lovely sticky dough. Spread some flour on a surface and your hands and roll the dough into about 10 circular balls (depending on how thick and doughy you want each dumpling to be). Then all you have to do is poach them in water for about 15 minutes. I roll them in a bit of melted butter straight after poaching them, the dumplings absorb the butter making them shiny and giving them added richness.

Lastly, add the dumplings to the still simmering stew, stir a couple of times to coat the dumplings in the sauce and plate up. Sprinkle over some chopped parsley if you are feeling fancy dancy.

The finished article

There you have it, game stew with horseradish dumplings, yum yum yum. I promise you this will win over any meat eater (and maybe a few vegetarians). Also trust me, make a big portion, I made enough for 4 people, I had one portion, my boyfriend had 3. Serve the rest of red wine or a dark ale, a stout preferably.
Enjoy!
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