Monday, January 5, 2009

Dutch Oven Venison Stew (Elk)

My brother-in-law, about a month ago, gave us some elk steaks. I wasn't sure just how to cook it, but I was really excited to try. I did a lot of research and reading to find out just how to cook it, and two things stuck with me. These were things that I read as consistent threads throughout my research. One was that game meats are much leaner than typical beef, so they tend to dry out as you cook it. It's good then, to cook it with veggies and things that add moisture to it.

Another was that a bit of vinegar can help counteract that "gamey" taste. You can overdo it, it's true, but a touch would help mellow that out.

So, here it is!

Dutch Oven Venison Stew

12" shallow dutch oven

  • 2-3 medium onions, sliced
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-2 lbs red game meat (like I mentioned, I used elk)
  • 1 can (about a cup and a half) beef broth
  • 4-5 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 large potatoes, quartered and sliced
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped
  • 1 cup of carrots (baby or sliced)
  • lots of chopped fresh parsley
  • About a quarter cup of vinegar (I used red wine vinegar)
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • 3-5 Tablespoons flour

Some other things you could add, if you wanna:
  • Chopped green onions
  • a can of diced tomatoes

Making it was pretty easy. In fact, the hardest part was getting the coals lit in the cold wind. Especially since I was out of lighter fluid. I was forced to use - ummm - stronger stuff. Don't tell my kids that I used some drizzles from our lawn mower canister...

Anyway, it got lit (quite spectacularly, I might add), and I scattered some coals below. I put some olive oil in the dutch oven and put it on the coals to heat up. I added the onions and the garlic to brown. Then, I added the meat to brown. Then, I added everything else, except the flour. That was added and stirred in later.

From there, I just cooked it with about 15 or so coals below, and the same number above. I just let it boil and simmer for about 2-3 hours. The potatoes and the carrots were soft, the flavors were all the way through the broth and the meat. Then I added the flour to thicken it up.

It was great!


  1. I've found that flour by itself tends to make anything I thicken in to a lumpy mess... I have been using a 'roux' to thicken, and I have only been disappointed once... but that was a poor choice of meat juices. Mix equal flour with equal oil and let cook for 5-10 minutes. Be careful how much you add, or you might have beef jello.

    Also, Tai Pan Trading Co has the oil bottles for about a buck, so next time you can tell them they came from a trendy curio shop!

  2. I find that breaking the "rules of a "roux and adding more oil than flour kills the potential for lumpiness and makes it easier to mix into the rest of the dish.



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