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Venison pie- luxury winter pie all the family will enjoy

Our cookery editor Leah Byrom turns her attention to the seasonal produce ready to be enjoyed throughout the colder month of November. 

Venison, red wine and mushrooms are the staples of this luxury winter pie all the family will enjoy

Serves 6; Prep time: 45 minutes + marinating; Cooking time: 2 hours 15 minutes

 

Ingredients

2 large onions

1kg venison

1 bay leaf

1 sprig of fresh thyme

15g butter

1 tspn tomato puree

1 tbspn plain flour

300ml red wine

150ml beef stock

150g shiitake mushrooms

 

For the marinade:

2 tbspn red wine

2 tbspn balsamic vinegar

 

For the pastry:

250g plain flour

125g lard

1 tspn thyme leaves

Generous grinding of coarse black pepper

1 egg yolk mixed with a dash of milk

 

Method

  • First marinade the meat – cut it into even-sized chunks and add the balsamic vinegar and red wine – then leave to marinade
  • Cut the onion into even-sized pieces and soften in a dash of oil and a knob of butter over a low heat in a casserole pan and add the bay leaf and thyme
  • While the onion is cooking, sear the meat in batches; heat a frying pan and add only enough pieces of meat so there is a gap between each one, sear on both sides, then pop in a sieve resting over a bowl; repeat until all meat is seared
  • Add the butter to the frying pan to melt, add the flour and tomato puree and cook for one minute; add any of the remaining marinade from the bowl, along with any juice released from the seared venison
  • Gradually add the red wine and stock and bring to simmering point
  • Tip the meat into the onion pan, then pour in the sauce and leave to simmer for about an hour-and-a-half, until the meat is tender
  • Soften the mushrooms in a dash of oil, then once the meat is cooked, add the mushrooms and season to taste
  • Remove the bay leaf and thyme and leave to cool before making into a pie

 

For the pastry:

  • Rub the lard into the flour to resemble fine breadcrumbs; chop the thyme leaves and add, along with a generous grinding of coarse black pepper and a pinch of sea salt flakes
  • Add enough cold water to allow the mixture to form a soft, but not sticky, dough; leave to rest
  • Preheat the oven to 180degC/356degF/Gas mark 4, then once the mixture has cooled, place into the pie dish and roll out the pastry
  • Using the egg wash to brush the edges of the dish, stick the pastry down and press the edges with a fork
  • Cut a pair of antlers into the centre of the pie to release the steam, brush with egg wash and bake for 30-40 minutes

 

Leah’s tip

If time does not allow, enjoy this this as a casserole with some creamy mashed potatoes and you can always make any left overs into a pie for a later date

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