Venison Stew Recipe
What screams comfort food in the cold winter months more than a heaping bowl of Venison Stew?
In my household, we take on the time-consuming process of dressing, butchering, and vacuum sealing our own game. I know plenty of people that take their animals to the butcher, but I take huge pride in being able to go full cycle with harvests. When butchering deer, it would be extremely easy to just throw everything that isn’t a back strap or roast into the grind pile. It’s the thought of stew though that motivates me to take the extra time to make freezer bags filled with perfectly cut 1-inch cubes of meat. After trying this recipe, you will want to do the same.
For years, I could never find a stew recipe that I absolutely loved, and I often used a different recipe every time. That was until I came across Emeril Lagasse’s Beef Stew recipe on The Food Network’s website. In my opinion, it’s the Essence Creole Seasoning that is used to coat the meat that really makes this stew flavorful. I have modified Emeril’s recipe slightly, with the biggest change being in what protein I use- Venison instead of Beef. I hope you all enjoy!
3 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 pounds venison cube meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups roughly chopped onions
2 cups sliced carrots, (1-inch slices)
4-5 celery stalks, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon roughly chopped garlic
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups beef stock (I use no-salt added or low-sodium)
4 tablespoons tomato paste
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 sprig fresh rosemary
3 to 4 cups 1-inch dice russet potatoes
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves (optional)
Emeril’s ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper (I cut it to ½ TBSP)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
- Set a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the pot and allow the oil to heat up.
- Season the beef with Essence Creole Seasoning Mixture. Make sure to coat the meat thoroughly. An easy cheat is to put the meat in a ziplock back with the seasoning and SHAKE, SHAKE, SHAKE!
- Add 1/3 of the beef to the Dutch oven and cook until the cubes are browned on all sides. It will only take a couple minutes on each side. Remove the beef from the pot and set aside. Repeat these steps for the remaining 2 batches of meat. Make sure to add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pot for each batch of meat. Set aside.
*** Make sure to test out your little delicious morsels of meat to make sure they are good enough to serve to others! ☺ Just remember to save some for the stew. Once you try the cubes, you won’t want to stop eating them. I think the cubes by themselves would make a great party appetizer with a dipping sauce, such as a garlic aioli.
- Add the butter, onions, and celery to the Dutch oven and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to get soft and caramelized (about 3 minutes). Add the garlic and cook for roughly 30 seconds. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes. Add the beef stock, tomato paste, thyme, rosemary, and browned beef to the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer, partially cover the pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is tender, about 1 hour.
- Add the carrots and potatoes to the stew and partially cover the pot with a lid. Continue cooking until the carrots potatoes are very tender, about 30-45 minutes. Remove the lid and discard the thyme and rosemary stems.
- Add the peas and parsley (optional) to the stew, stir well to combine, then remove from the heat.
- If the stew is not to my desired thickness, I make a slurry to add to the pot. Everyone has their own way of thickening stew, but this is what I personally do. I take 2 tablespoons of flour into a cup (anything that can hold hot liquid). I then slowly add hot broth from the stew into the cup. I use a fork to whisk the flour and hot liquid. I continue adding liquid until I get a viscous mixture- I want it to be thick but not as thick as a paste. I add this mixture to the stew a little at a time, and continue to stir the stew. As the mixture combines with the stew, the stew will slowly start too thick. Continue this until you come to your desired thickness. Note that the stew will thicken even more when removed from the heat.
*** If anyone making this recipe is like my carb-loving husband, then it is imperative to serve the stew alongside some buttermilk biscuits or crusty bread for dipping!***
Other changes I have made to Emeril’s recipe include:
-Reducing the amount of beef broth added
-Adding extra celery (because I love the flavors and texture it adds)
-Adding the carrots to the stew when the potatoes are added. I found that the carrots overcooked and became mushy when they were left in the pot the entire cooking time.
If you are interested in taking a look at the backbone for my recipe,
Emeril’s Original Recipe can be found at the link below: