Serving Venison Bourguignon has become a family tradition every Christmas Eve. If you don't have venison, you can make this with beef (stew meat)! There is no way to mess this dish up, which eases my mind as I prepare my home to receive guests.
Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or stockpot over medium heat.
Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the bacon is lightly browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon.
Salt and pepper venison. In very hot skillet add a single layer of venison, brown it on all sides working in batches. Do not crowd the pan or the meat will steam instead of brown. Set aside.
Place onions, and carrots into the stockpot. Cook over medium heat for approximately 10 minutes or until the onions are lightly browned. Add garlic and cook for one minute longer. Add the wine and broth into pot. Add the venison, bacon, tomato paste, and and broth into pot. Add the venison, bacon, tomato paste, and thyme. Bring to a boil. When it reaches a boil turn it to low and simmer for about 2 hours.
Sauté mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter until lightly browned. Add to stew.
Thicken the stew by mixing 1/4 cup of water, 2 tablespoons of flour, and 2 tablespoons of butter. Pour mixture into pot. Simmer for about 5 minutes.