Tag Archives: celery

Slow-cooker venison stew

15 Oct

Stew. In a bowl. On a table. In the kitchen.

 

Last winter, after I heard many a person raving about their slow-cookers (Crock Pots to any American readers), I took the not so financially painful plunge and bought one. These gadgets are surprisingly good value and  for the results they produce are well worth having in the kitchen. During the summer months, the slow cooker sat in the cupboard, slowly getting jealous of its enemy the barbecue, so I thought it was due a spin this weekend with some stew-friendly weather on the cards and also with game back in season. So off I went to my fishmongers to get my venison. Yes, I did say that.

 

Ingredients:

Splash of olive oil

400g venison

1 onion (chopped according to how picky your eaters are)

4 cloves of garlic (crushed)

2 tablespoons of flour

300 ml of red wine

300 ml of stock (I used beef)

1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon of tomato puree

salt and pepper

1 bay leaf

5 sticks of celery

4 carrots

baby potatoes (4/5 per person)

 

Method:

First heat some oil in a big pan/ wok.

Add the venison at a nice high heat and let it brown for a few minutes. I removed it at this point as I didn’t want to overcook it.

Add in the onion, which was left in big chunks (not everyone likes onion apparently.) Cook until it has softened a little.

Add the venison back in, with the garlic and the flour. Over a medium heat, stir and toss everything around until it is all covered nicely.

At this point add in the red wine, scraping the bottom of the pan to get the floury-goodness incorporated.

Once this is done, add in the stock, tomato puree, Worcestershire sauce and season with salt and pepper. Fling in a bay leaf if it takes your fancy. Bring to the boil.

Once it had been brought to the boil, transfer it to your slow-cooker.

I cooked it at high for about 2.5 hours before adding the vegetables in, which were all chopped into small/ bite size pieces. Cook on high for another 1.5/2 hours until the veg is tender.

Some good crusty bread would have been excellent with it to mop up the juices. I didn’t have any, so no gloating. The venison was deliciously tender after it’s slow-cook, so Bambi’s mother didn’t die in vain.

Enjoy.

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Pumpkin soup with Coriander drizzle

21 Oct

It’s that time of year, pumpkins are everywhere!! This year, I thought I would do something a bit more than just using them for decoration. This soup is so simple to make, and with the peppers and coriander it’s a real warmer-upper as the weather dives towards freezing.

 

Pumpkin soup with Coriander drizzle

Ingredients:

1.2 kg of peeled pumpkin with the seeds and core removed

1 x red pepper

1x yellow pepper

4 cloves of garlic

1 x large onion, finely chopped

5 stalks of celery, chopped

1 litre of chicken stock

25 g of coriander

olive oil

chilli oil (if you have it)

salt and pepper

 

First thing to do is to heat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Then peel the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds and core. I found the easiest way was to cut it into slices as you would with a melon and deal with it piece by piece. I then chopped it into smaller pieces for roasting. Add the pumpkin to a roasting tray with the de-seeded sliced peppers along with the four cloves of garlic which I left whole. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 40 minutes.

Ready to roast

 

About 10 minutes before the pumpkin and peppers are due to come out of the oven, in a large pan, heat some olive oil. Add the chopped onion and celery and cook until they have softened but do not let them colour too much. When the pumpkin and friends are done in the oven, add the stock to the pan before tipping in all the roast stuff. Cover and let it bubble away for 30 minutes on a low heat.

 

While this is cooking you can prepare the coriander drizzle. Wash the coriander and dry on some kitchen paper. Finely chop it, until it’s nearly minced. Place in a bowl and add a good glug of chilli oil. If you don’t have chilli oil, normal olive oil is just as good. Season with a little salt and pepper. You want a consistency that will just fall of the spoon.

 

When the soup mixture is finished cooking, blend until smooth, as you don’t want any lumps of garlic lurking in your soup!

 

Serve in warmed bowls and drizzle some coriander over the top with a spoon for a little extra kick.

 

Enjoy.

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