Game is becoming increasingly easier to find and is such an appealing alternative to mass-farmed domestic animals. I used impala, but springbok or kudu also work well.
• Potato gnocchi lightly tossed in sage butter, sprinkled with Parmesan and flat-leafed parsley gives the casserole a delicious Italian twist.
• Instead of gnocchi, top the casserole with a puff pastry lattice blanket. Cut puff pastry into 3cm strips and weave a blanket to fit your pot. Paint with lightly beaten egg and bake separately until golden and crispy on an oiled baking tray at 200°C. Slide it onto the casserole and serve with rice.
Recipe by Jenny Crwys-Williams
Serves: 12 Cooking Time: 3 hrs
- 125ml cake flour
- salt, freshly ground black pepper and paprika, to taste
- 1,8kg venison, off the bone and cut into 1½cm cubes
- olive and sunflower oil, for frying
- 4 large onions, roughly chopped
- ground nutmeg, to taste
- ground cloves, to taste
- 2 cubes chicken stock, crumbled
- 60ml fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 500g streaky bacon, diced
- 125ml chutney
- 15ml Worcestershire sauce
- 15ml balsamic vinegar
- 15ml soy sauce
- chilli jam or sauce, to taste, optional
- 750ml water
- butter, for frying
- 200g button mushrooms
Preheat the oven to 160°C.2
Combine the flour, salt, pepper and paprika in a bowl. Dust the meat in the flour and shake off any excess.3
Heat the oil in a cast-iron pot and fry the meat in batches until nicely browned. Set aside.4
Using the same pot, add a little more oil if necessary and fry the onion. Return the meat to the pot.5
Add the nutmeg, cloves, chicken stock, parsley, bacon, chutney, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce and chilli jam or sauce, if using.6
Mix well and add the water to make a slushy mixture. Cover the pot and bake in the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake until brown and tender, about 1 hour.7
Heat the butter in a frying pan and lightly sear the mushrooms. Sprinkle on top of the casserole and serve with gnocchi and sage butter.
To drink: Venison is so South African, let’s pair it with a good pinotage from Allée Bleue 2006.