Meals and Courses

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 650 g (1 lb 5 oz) shoulder or leg venison, diced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 streaky bacon rashers, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 300 ml (½ pint) red wine
  • 450 ml (¾ pint) beef stock
  • 1 tablespoon tomato purée
  • 3 sprigs rosemary, leaves chopped, plus extra, torn, for sprinkling
  • 25 g (1 oz) butter
  • 300 g (10 oz) shallots, peeled and halved if large
  • 150 g (5 oz) closed-cup mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 1 quantity rosemary shortcrust pastry (see page 10)
  • beaten egg, to glaze
  • salt and pepper

Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole, add the venison, then add the onion and bacon, and fry, stirring, until the venison is browned. Stir in the garlic and flour, then mix in the wine, stock and tomato purée. Add the rosemary and season well with salt and pepper.

Bring to the boil, stirring, then cover and transfer to a preheated oven, 160°C (325°F), Gas Mark 3, for 2 hours. Take the dish out of the oven. Heat the butter in a frying pan, add the shallots and mushrooms and fry until golden, then stir into the venison and leave to cool.

Spoon the venison mixture into a 1.2 litre (2 pint) ovenproof pie dish. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface until about 5 cm (2 inches) wider than the diameter of the pie dish. Cut 2 long strips from the edges about 1 cm (½ inch) wide. Brush the dish rim with egg, press the strips on top, then brush these with egg. Lift the pie lid in place, sealing the edges together well. Trim off the excess pastry.

Flute the edge of the pastry (see page 17). Brush with egg and sprinkle with a few extra torn rosemary leaves. Decorate the top if liked. Bake in a preheated oven, 190°C (375°F), Gas Mark 5, for 35–40 minutes until the pastry is golden and the filling piping hot. Serve with green beans and braised red cabbage.

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