Easy Venison and Mushrooms

At this time of year I’m always happy to eat my dinner from a bowl, usually with some ciabatta or a baguette to break up and dip into the sauce. You might or might not want bread with this recipe, depending on what you serve it with. I like to serve it with penne pasta all mixed together in the cooking pot and placed on the table for people to help themselves. The cinnamon adds a lovely sweet warmth to the dish but can be overpowering, so take care if you are planning to adjust quantities. To serve 2 people you will need:-

  • 300g lean Venison (I use shoulder steak)
  • 300g fresh Mushrooms (use a mixture of types if you can)
  • 3 Banana Shallots or 1 small Onion
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • ┬╝tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 Stock Cube (I use Vegetable)
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil for frying
  • Hot water
  • 2 tsp Cornflour mixed with cold water for thickening

Pre-heat your oven to Gas Mark 4. Dice the Venison to about 1.5cm cubes. Peel and dice the Mushrooms to a similar size. Peel and thinly slice the Shallots or Onions, and peel and crush the Garlic Cloves.
Add the Olive Oil to an oven proof pot and gently fry the Shallots or Onions with the Garlic, taking care not to colour them. Remove this mixture to a bowl, raise the heat under the oven proof pot and fry the Venison on all sides to seal it. Add the Mushrooms and continue frying, making sure they get a good coating of oil and meat juices.
Remove the pot from the heat and return the Shallot and Garlic mixture to it. Give the contents of the pot a good stir then crumble the Stock Cube over them. Sprinkle the Ground Cinnamon over the mixture then add enough hot water to just cover the contents of the pot. Stir to make sure the crumbled Stock Cube dissolves.
Cover the pot and place it in the centre of the pre-heated oven. Let it cook for about 30 minutes then check to make sure there is still enough liquid in it, adding more hot water if necessary (or a glass of wine if you prefer). Return it to the oven and cook until the Venison reaches your preferred level of softness (I like mine soft enough not to need a knife, which takes just under an hour).
When the Venison is cooked to your taste, remove the pot from the oven and check the thickness of the sauce. It will probably need a bit of thickening so add the cornflour and water mixture a bit at a time until you achieve your preferred consistency then stir on the hob for 2 to 3 minutes before serving.