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Guest Recipe: Chloe's Slow Cooked, Sloe Gin Venison Ragu

Guest Recipe: Chloe's Slow Cooked, Sloe Gin Venison Ragu

This venison ragu has a boozy twist with the addition of sloe gin, and is perfect for serving at  dinner parties.

Cooking the venison low and slow means it's meltingly tender (which can often be quite difficult as it's such a lean cut of meat). The sloe gin adds fruitiness, as well as it's distinctive, warming flavour. Serve in a casserole dish in the middle of the table, with your side of choice (we went for tagliatelle, but it's worth noting it's delicious with good old mash or even some cheesy polenta) and let everyone pile in, add their own sprinkling of cheese - enjoy!

  • Cook Time: 3.5 hours

Serves: 6

Category: Dinner

Ingredients

  • 1kg venison, diced into large cubes
  • 25g butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 carrots, finely diced
  • 5 shallots, finely diced
  • 2 celery sticks, finely diced
  • 1 heaped tablespoon of juniper berries, crushed in a pestle and mortar
  • 1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
  • 200ml sloe gin
  • Vegetable stock, to cover
  • Fresh flat leaf parsley, to serve
  • Side of your choice, plus plenty of parmesan

Method

  1. Heat the oil and butter in a large casserole dish, then fry the vegetables until they start to soften (make sure they don't catch, as you don't want any hint of bitterness in the final dish)
  2. Add the venison, juniper berries and bay leaf and fry quickly until the meat is lightly sealed.
  3. Add in the sloe gin, then top with vegetable stock until everything is just covered in liquid.
  4. Add the lid to the casserole dish, transfer to the oven and allow to cook slowly for 2.5 hours at 150°C.
  5. When the time is up, remove most of the meat (it doesn't matter if you miss a bit) and shred on a plate.
  6. Add back into the sauce and return to the oven for another hour. If the sauce is looking quite thin then leave the lid off for the final hour, but make sure to check occasionally, as you don't want to let it burn.
  7. When ready to serve, stir through some chopped parsley and plenty of black pepper before putting in the middle of the table and letting people help themselves.

Chloe is a food blogger over at Life & Loves. A twenty-something newlywed, she enjoys mac'n'cheese, slow cooked stews and inventing exciting lunchbox fillers. If you enjoyed her Sloe Gin Venison Ragu, why not check out her other enticing recipes over on her blog?


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