Venison Stew and Herby Dumplings

Venison is an autumn treat and this recipe epitomises autumn; rich, hearty and packed with flavour. It’s easy too, just get it going on your Egg and walk away leaving the Egg to do the rest.

This takes advantage of venison shoulder, a slightly cheaper cut. If you wanted, you could substitute beef stewing steak and still have a fabulous stew.

Cooking Surfaces

Dutch Oven

Cooking Surfaces

and

Ingredients2

For the stew

  • 3-4tbsp olive oil
  • 100g pancetta
  • 1kg venison, cut into big cubes (about 2cm cubed)
  • Plain flour to dust the venison
  • 1 onion, chopped finely
  • 3 cloves of coarsely chopped garlic
  • 1 punnet of chestnut mushrooms
  • A large glass of red wine (and some for the chef)
  • 25g dried porcini mushrooms, chopped after soaking and the juice retained
  • 2 tbsp of dark cherry jam
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 3 sticks of celery
  • 2 tsp Italian herbs
  • 1 packet cooked chestnuts
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the dumplings

  • 100g self raising flour
  • 50g suet
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary
  • 5 tbsp water

Notes

I use a Lodge Dutch oven most of the time. I like its lid being able to be a skillet. 

Method

  1. Setup your Egg for direct cooking with the temp at about 180°C. No need for the ConvEGGtor at this stage.
  2. Heat the olive oil in your Dutch oven, add in the pancetta and fry for a few minutes. Set aside.
  3. Flour your venison cubes lightly and then fry in small batches until they colour. Add a little oil, if needed. Set them aside.
  4. Add your sliced onion, garlic and chestnut mushroom. Fry until they soften.
  5. Once softened, deglaze the pan by adding a glass (or so) of red wine.
  6. Now add your celery, carrots and your stockpots.
  7. Add back your pancetta and venison.
  8. Now cover with water and stir to make sure the stockpots dissolve.
  9. Add in your cherry jam and season with black pepper.
  10. Add your chopped porcini mushrooms and all but the last bit of its soaking liquid; this may contact a little grit.
  11. Setup your Egg for an indirect cook by adding your cold ConvEGGtor. You’re aiming for a temp of 110°C. Adding your ConvEGGtor should bring down the temp to this level but you will have to adjust the vents.
  12. Now allow your stew to cook for 2.5 to 3 hours.
  13. Add your chestnuts (I like them whole but you might like to coarsely chop them).
  14. Make your dumplings, the mixture should be pulled together but not overworked. It will make 8 dumplings.
  15. Keep the setup of your Egg as indirect (ConvEGGtor in) but raise the temperature to 180°C.
  16. Add your dumplings and cook for a further 20-25 minutes until the dumplings have puffed up a little and the sauce has gone a little crusty on the sides of the dumplings.