Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Hunter's Pie

I'm not a big fan of venison - but thanks to a friend, we ended up with a freezer full of it.  10 1-pound tubes of ground deer.  So I've been trying to jazz it up a little in the hopes that I won't notice it so much.  I've tossed it in spaghetti sauces and lasagnas - just about anywhere I might use ground beef.  But I discovered that it worked particularly well in this riff on Shepherd's Pie.

Hunter's Pie

1 small onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
dash salt and pepper
1 lb ground venison
1 tsp tarragon
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 small bag frozen peas
1/2 cup red wine
1/2 cup beef broth
6 large russett potatoes, diced
4 oz white cheddar, shredded
liberal dash rosemary
milk and butter as needed

Preheat oven to 400.

In medium pan, heat olive oil and add onion, celery and carrot.  Sprinkle in salt and pepper.  Cook until soft and onions turn clear (about 5 minutes).

Meanwhile, brown venison with tarragon and crushed red pepper.  Drain grease.

Meanwhile, boil potatoes until soft (about 10 minutes).  Mash potatoes with cheddar, rosemary, and enough butter and milk to achieve desired consistency.

Mix browned venison with sauteed vegetables.  Add frozen peas, red wine and broth.  Transfer to 2 quart casserole dish.  Top with mashed potatoes, smoothing into peaks and sealing edges. 

Bake until potatoes turn golden (about 15 minutes).  Let sit 5 minutes before serving.