Venison recipes: venison casserole & vietnamese venison pho

Simple suppers get a new lease of life with just a little venison

Simple suppers get a new lease of life with just a little venison - Credit: Archant

Venison two ways! Anna Rogers presents a simple venison casserole recipe, and a more complex vietnamese venison pho recipe

It's always best to allow the venison to rest before serving

It's always best to allow the venison to rest before serving - Credit: Archant

Words, recipes and pictures courtesy of Anna Rogers, Very Good Venison

2021 really doesn’t seem to want to be outdone by 2020, since the new year started with another lockdown. My children returned to school after the Christmas holidays, smartly dressed with their shoes polished, only to find out later that evening that my efforts to iron their uniforms were in vain. The next six weeks of home schooling meant that pyjamas would do!

Great, now what do we do, I thought. Both my husband and I can’t work from home, yet we are not key workers... not the easiest of situations to be in. However, we are both fortunate to have understanding employers, so with the daily juggling of the parenting/home-schooling baton, we are just about coping.

Once again, I find myself sitting in on their lessons and overseeing tasks set, and I realised that there are some gaps in my own learning, either from lessons I have completely forgotten about or ones I never learnt in the first place at school! When those big begging eyes look to you for help, I can see that they wished that maybe they had parents that had tried a little harder at school!

With the weekends significantly lacking in anything social for the time being, efforts of course can be made to keep up with the demands of the cull numbers. My husband is now taking the opportunity to take the children out stalking, giving them the best education in our beautiful deer, along with the fauna and flora they reside in. Of course, after hours of being stuck at a screen plodding through their academic work, this provides some much-needed time outdoors in the fresh air.

With the days blurring into weeks, then months, along with the weather being a little bleak, I have recently been trying to put more effort into my meal planning, throwing in cosy family favourites that I can pretty much cook with my eyes shut, along with meals that are more unusual for us.

These recipes provide a little treat for the week. It is with this in mind that I decided to share these two meals with you. One is a very simple venison casserole, that perfect ‘home comforts’ meal, with no obscure ingredients. The other brings in some more unusual flavours and maybe something you havn’t tried before.

A Vietnamese venison pho is delicious and simple - the perfect addition to any meal plan

A Vietnamese venison pho is delicious and simple - the perfect addition to any meal plan - Credit: Archant

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Simple Venison Casserole - Ingredients

? 500g diced venison

? 1 onion, chopped

? 2 sticks celery, finely chopped

? 2 large carrots, in decent chunks

Anna finds puréed lemongrass and ginger a really helpful cheat to have in stock

Anna finds puréed lemongrass and ginger a really helpful cheat to have in stock - Credit: Archant

? 2 beef stock cubes

? 1tbsp flour

? 1tbsp Worcestershire sauce

? 1tbsp redcurrant or cranberry jelly

? Couple sprigs of fresh rosemary

? Salt & pepper (don’t add the salt at the start)

Method

1. Now, my tip for cooking casserole with venison or game is to NOT brown the meat – controversial, I know! Nor do I add the salt right away. I find doing that helps keep the meat tender.

2. Fry off the onion and celery in a little oil until soft, add the carrots and stir in the flour.

3. Add the Worcestershire sauce and redcurrant jelly.

4. Dissolve the stock cubes in a pint of boiling water.

5. Then add the venison and top up the mixture with more boiling water to cover all of the ingredients.

6. Bring it up to the boil, then place in the oven for two hours at 160°C. Add more liquid, if needed.

7. Enjoy with mash and greens.

Vietnamese Venison Pho - Ingredients

? 300g (approx.) venison loin

? 1 clove garlic, crushed

? 1 fresh chilli

? 1tbsp vegetable oil

? 1½tbsp fish sauce

? 1tsp puréed ginger

? 1tsp puréed lemongrass

? Twist of black pepper

? 1 vegetable stock cube, dissolved in ½ pint boiling water

? Decent bunch of fresh coriander

? 2 bushy sprigs of mint

? 1 pack udon noodles

? ½ pack sugar snap peas

? Cucumber sticks

? A few crushed peanuts

? ½ lime, cut into two pieces

Method

1. Crush the stock cube into a jug; add the ginger, lemongrass and chilli. Pour in half a pint of boiling water and stir. Then pour the mixture into a small pan and simmer very gently so that you get just a hint of bubbles.

2. Heat the vegetable oil in a non-stick pan and fry the loin for 10 minutes on a medium heat, turning regularly. Season with a little black pepper.

3. Remove from the pan and allow to rest on a board for 10 minutes.

4. Now bring some water to the boil in a larger pan, dropping the sugar snap peas in for the first two minutes, and then adding your udon noodles for the remaining two minutes.

5. Bring the tasty broth off the heat and stir in the chopped fresh herbs and fish sauce.

6. Slice the venison, then drain the noodles and sugar snap peas.

7. Arrange in bowls and pour over the tasty stock.

8. Top with finely sliced sticks of cucumber and crushed peanuts (optional) and a wedge of lime.