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How to use the tougher cuts of Venison: Slow cooked shredded Deer Ribs in Red Wine with Root Vegetables

May 6, 2011

A student having Deer meat is a little unusual, what with the high prices and everything. But this is actually even more unusual as I got this meat for free, after helping to butcher the Deer in question with an obsidian tool!

Not a typical day. Basically, one of my lecturers, Bruce Bradley, went through a phase of buying whole deer, apparently to teach the experimental archaeology class about ancient butcher techniques, but I feel it was also due to the face that he really likes Venison, as I do! If it had been a meaty Red Deer, like the one the class had cut up previously, he would have probably given the Ribs away for a donation. But as it was, I spent several hours helping out with the portioning, and Bruce already had a surplus of Venison, so I got the Ribs and a spinal section for free as thanks! I don’t know what I would have said to a policeman requesting to look inside my rucksack and managed to disturb at least one vegetarian friend by showing them what was inside.

I made the Stock being used in this recipe with the spinal section, a bit grizzly but tasty! And this Casserole was really delicious, being a very good payoff for the time and effort put into butchery and cooking 🙂

– Recipe –

Feeds 5-7

Two sets of Roe Deer Ribs, one of Red Deer Ribs or similar tougher cuts of Venison

600g Potatoes, Carrots and other root vegetables, sliced

200g Mushrooms, rough chopped

1 bulb Fennel Root, in chunks

1 Onion, chopped finely

3 sticks Celery, chopped finely

 5 Cloves Garlic, minced

Red Wine

Herbs such as Parsley, Marjoram, Thyme and Rosemary

Beef/Venison Stock, or Stock Cubes and Water

  1. Rub the Ribs with Salt and a mix of herbs, then sauté each side individually on a high heat, pushing down with a spatula till they are nicely browned all over, reserve.
  2. While that is happening, fry the Onion, Garlic and Celery in Butter for roughly 10 minutes on a low heat, till soft and translucent.
  3. Put the Ribs in the bottom of a casserole, cover over with the vegetables, add 1-2 cups of Red Wine and then just cover the whole lot with Stock, so that some of the vegetables are slightly exposed.
  4. Put in the oven and cook on gas mark 4 (350F, 180C) for 3-4 hours.
  5. Remove from the oven, use a wooden spoon to fish the Ribs out, drain, cool till touchable and then shred the meat off the bone by hand. Stir the shredded meat back into the pot, make sure it is still warm enough and then serve.


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