So October is here and the winter weather is coming in fast and it’s time to bring out the comfort food. Those warm, hearty dishes, rich in flavour and just perfect for a cold winters evening. My Venison Pie recipe is inspired by Pieminister’s “Deerstalker” pie which I sampled in London at the Borough Market and is great for warming your belly and your soul! This is rustic, full bodied and delicious food – I’m still working on the overall appearance!
It took me cooking it around three or four times to perfect the recipe, but I’m really happy with the flavour and so far I haven’t had any complaints. It’s a rich pie, full of flavour and goes great with a good dollop of mash and some fresh greens. This is the perfect winter warmer and you can actually buy pre-diced venison from the larger Tesco stores as well as Waitrose.
- 700g diced venison
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 4 tbsp flour
- 300ml beef stock
- 1 bottle red wine
- 3 heaped tbsp redcurrant or cranberry jelly
- 4 rashers smoked bacon
- 1 pack puy lentils
- 375g ready roll puff pastry
- Toss the meat in the flour (you could do this in a sandwich/freezer bag). Brown the meat in a hot pan, remove with a slotted spoon and set aside, then wipe off any burnt flour from the bottom of the pan (it will catch naturally, but I just wipe it away before continuing)
- Soften the onions then put the meat back in the pan and add the thyme, seasoning, stock, half of the wine and 1 tbsp of the redcurrant jelly. Leave to simmer on a low heat for one hour, uncovered, stirring regularly to prevent it catching. If it looks like it’s reducing too much, put the lid on.
- After an hour, fry the bacon in a separate pan, remove with a slotted spoon and dry on kitchen paper, then add to the pan along with the remaining wine, jelly and puy lentils. Give it a good stir, taste and adjust seasoning if necessary, then cover and leave to simmer for another 20-30 minutes to reduce.
- When the sauce has thickened and the wine reduced, take it off the heat, transfer to a pie dish and leave to cool.
- Roll out the pastry and place on top of the dish, then pop it in the oven at 200c or 180 for fan. Cook for 30-35 minutes until the pastry is risen and golden brown.
This pie should happily serve 4 people, but you can add more meat if you want to. I like to serve this with lovely buttery mash, green beans and a good bottle of red wine! Enjoy!