Meats that work well when braised are usually proteins that have a lot of muscle fiber and connective tissue. As this breaks down, it dissolves into gelatin which adds body and to the cooking liquid. Successful braises intermingle the flavor of the vegetables, herbs, and liquids making it a delight to enjoy!
2poundsvenison roastcut into 1 inch cubes
1 1/2cupred wine
Kosher salt and pepper
5Tablespoonsextra virgin olive oil
6ouncesno nitrate baconchopped
4carrotspeeled and roughly chopped
4ribs celeryroughly chopped
1poundpotatoescut into 2 inch cubes
16ouncescanned tomatoescrushed with your hands
In a large bowl, place venison and red wine. Marinade in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for at least 2 hours. While reserving wine marinade, remove the venison to a rack and dry with a paper towel. Venison needs to be dry to brown properly. Liberally salt and pepper the venison.
In a Dutch Oven or large cast iron skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil until almost smoking. Brown venison in batches adding oil to the pan as needed. Remove venison to a plate and set aside.
Add bacon, carrots, onions, celery, and garlic to the pan and cook over medium-high heat until browned and onions are translucent (about 6 minutes). Add potatoes, mushrooms, thyme, oregano, rosemary, reserved wine, beef stock, tomatoes, and 1tablespoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper to the pan. Bring mixture to a boil and add venison back to the pan. Cover and simmer for 2 hours. Turn the heat off and allow to sit uncovered for 30 minutes. This seems to allow the meat to tenderize even more. Serve with crusty bread! So so good!!
The trick to this recipe is to allow the braise to rest for 30 minutes uncovered.