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Cranberry & Venison Casserole

This venison casserole is beautifully rich and decadent with gamey venison and a rich, glossy sauce that is spiked with bursts of freshness from the cranberries. Venison is not a budget meat, however in this recipe we bulk out the meat content with pork mince and vegetables to create a really special, and also very reasonably priced meal, that’s crammed full of robust, seasonal flavour.

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C.
  2. Sprinkle the flour onto a plate and season heavily with salt and pepper. Coat the meat in the flour and fry in batches in a flame-proof casserole dish, don’t overcrowd the pan. When each batch is done, take the meat out and set aside in a separate bowl or dish.
  3. Brown the mince in the casserole dish, don’t worry too much about breaking it up, then put this aside with the browned venison.
  4. Add the butter, onions and celery to the casserole dish that you browned the meat in. Allow the vegetables to start to soften and brown slightly.
  5. Add the garlic and bay leaf to the pan and then slowly pour the stock into the pan. Mix well, scraping any meat and veg residue from the base of the pan and mixing this into the stock too.
  6. Return the venison and pork back into the casserole dish and pour in any juices that have collected in the bottom of the resting dish.
  7. Add in the cranberries and rosemary. Bring the contents of the casserole dish to a boil and as it reaches the boil, put the casserole dish into the oven, with the casserole dish lid on slightly ajar (we want some of the liquid to evaporate off and intensify the flavour).
  8. Cook in the oven for 3 hours. 1 hour before its finished cooking, stir in the mushrooms.
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