Sunday, April 11, 2010

#241 Venison (or Game) Pie or Pasty

It’s pretty much the end of the game season now and so to see it off for another year, I thought a delicious venison pie was in order. I love venison, but for some reason have never cooked with it so I thought a pie would be the place to start. It’s a nice easy pie to make and the filling can be made well ahead of time. The really good thing about it was specific instruction of producing some ornate pastry work for the top. I don't know why the name of the recipe is a pie or pasty, because there's no instruction for making this into a pasty.

Start off by turning some pieces of shoulder venison or game in flour that has been seasoned with salt, pepper and mace. You’ll need three pounds of venison for other game for this. Brown the venison in two ounces of butter in a cast-iron casserole. Now add 4 ounces of chopped onion, ¼ pint of red wine plus enough beef or game stock to cover the meat. Bring to a simmer and cook gently until done, says Griggers. This might not be useful for those – like me – that have never cooked venison; I placed it in an oven heated to 150⁰C for two hours. In the case of game on the bone, it is cooked when you can take the meat easily from the bone. Melt two more ounces of butter in a saucepan and add a tablespoon of flour and cook to form a roux, strain some of the sauce into the pan and simmer for five minutes before mixing it back into the pie filling mixture. Check for seasoning. Pour the mixture into a pie dish and cover with puff pastry. Make a hole in the centre surrounded with a pastry rose plus some other nice ornate patterns, as is traditional, using egg to glue any bits on. Lastly brush to whole thing with more egg to make a nice glaze. Delicious hot or cold, says Jane.


#241 Venison Pie. This was a great pie! The meat was deliciously tender and gamey and the gravy dark and rich; a pie to warm your cockles. However, it was not delicious cold as the gravy was all congealed and it was a bit like dog food. Doing the pastry was great fun too (if you are a massive geek, like me) 7.5/10.

3 comments:

italianinspiration said...

Hi Neil,
I'd just like to say how much I love your blog. Ever since I started working at a tiny, freezing cold fruit and veg shop I have been a fan of Jane myself. When it was so cold that I had lost all feelings in my fingers I would prise Jane Grigson's vegetable book from the neglected bookshelf at the greengrocers; poring over each recipe as I waited for a customer to come in. Being such a huge Griggers fan at 17 is probably a bit strange, but there you go...well I just want to say, keep cooking!

Simon and Rach said...

A hearty and satisfying game pie. I have eaten a few in my time, though never with venison alone, and it was at least as good as any of the others. The meat was very tender and plentiful, perfect washed down with red wine. 8/10. Tried it cold for breakfast and agreed- would need reheating, not one for a picnic.
Simon

Neil B said...

Hey there.

italian inspiration: Thanks for the message - always nice to know that people actually read this thing!

Simon: as always, thanks for the comments xx