Beef and Shallot Stew

Winter months just call for a good stew. This is a recipe that I’ve had for a long time from Real Simple that I just think of every so often – Beef and Shallot Stew. I don’t/can’t eat beef, so I replace it with wild game. I’ve normally had venison but this time I found Wild Boar at Sprouts. It’s generally easier to have whole pieces of meat vs. ground, but sometimes you have to work with what you have.

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Ingredients

  • 4 pounds chuck meat, cut into 3- to 4-inch pieces, or 4 pounds pre-cut stew meat
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 bottle dry red wine
  • 1 1/2 pounds shallots, peeled
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme

Directions

1) Heat oven to 300° F. Season the beef with the salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or ovenproof pot over medium-high heat. Add some of the beef to the pot and brown on all sides. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining beef.
2) Spoon off and discard all but 1 tablespoon of the drippings. Add the wine and cook, stirring and scraping the bottom, for 3 minutes.
3) Return the beef to the pot along with the shallots and broth. Bring to a boil. Skim any foam. Add the thyme. Cover and transfer to oven until the beef is tender, about 2 hours. Spoon into individual bowls.

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Since I used ground meat, I didn’t need to cook the stew for nearly as long (can be a fraction of the time until the meat is cooked and onion are to the ‘softness’ you want). I serve it with some great French bread and green salad. Perfect for a cold day. Also pairs well with red wine. Cheers!

Going Boar Wild

When I go to Colorado I always get to check out this great grocery store, Sprouts. They always have fun stuff to check out, especially meat that is not super easy to find. The latest one I checked out was Ground Wild Boar. I will always remember how much I loved Warthog when I was in South Africa a few years ago and this seemed like it might be fairly similar. It is ‘… all natural and feral from Texas. It is trapped in the wild and processed exclusively under the Durham Ranch label. Each animal is hand selected and sited to our exact specifications.’ It is also a nice lean meat and was absolutely delicious. I wish it was easier to get. We just made it into patties and threw it on the grill.

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Kangaroo Burgers

Am finding more good new stuff to try.  In this great local store called Sprouts, while walking through the meat department I noticed some kangaroo (easy way to get to Australia, right?), distributed by Durham Ranch.

IMG_1615[1]After trying warthog and ostrich earlier this year in South Africa, I had to consider this.  I picked up the package to inspect.  Very lean so decided to give it a try.

IMG_1617[1]Looked up some recipes that evening and most said just to add some spices, an egg and breadcrumbs.  Did that and the patties are cooked rare-medium rare.  With all said and done, very good!  Very unique, mild flavor.  Tough to give it an exact description for taste because it doesn’t taste like anything else.  You can tell it’s wild game, but it doesn’t come across ‘gamey.’  I definitely recommend picking some of this up if you enjoy trying new food!