Venison with Prunes – Nadia Graves

Nadia Gravess Venison with PrunesNadia Graves’s Venison with Prunes

Nadia says: “Another great one pot meal. Try this slow-cooked venison recipe – the meat cooks to the softness of butter within hours and is complemented perfectly with the sweetness of the prunes and wine. In South Africa, the wine used is Muscadel. It is a sweet, full rounded wine with rich fruit flavours. It exists in white and red and is usually an after dinner drink, similar to a port. I used a red Banyuls instead which is very similar but easier to obtain in France. You could substitute beef for the venison if you prefer.”

Venison with Prunes

Serves 8

1/4 cup canola oil
500 g / 1 lb lardons or bacon, chopped into small pieces
3 large onions, diced
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
400 g / 14 oz  mushrooms, sliced
2 kg / 4 lbs venison, cut into large cubes
1/4 cup tomato paste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups pitted prunes
1 cup water
2 cups red muscadel
1 stick cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 160 C / 320 F
Heat the oil in a large, heavy bottomed saucepan – I used a 28-cm (11″) Le Creuset
Sauté the lardons or bacon until crispy
Add onions, garlic and mushrooms and sauté until soft
Add the venison and cook until the meat is well browned
Add the tomato paste, salt, pepper, prunes, water, wine and cinnamon
Bring to a boil then lower heat, cover and place in the oven for about 3 hours
Stir after one hour, checking if there is enough liquid
When the meat is tender, remove lid and cook until the sauce is thick enough (mine did not need extra cooking time)
Serve with samp or rice or pasta

Michael’s wine recommendation – CLICK HERE

Nadia Graves PicNadia Graves

I have always had a passion for food. Growing up in South Africa with a French mother who loved travel and was a great cook, I developed very early on a love for cooking and eating. I started off my career as a Chartered Accountant working in the accounting world, hospitality, and entertainment world before moving to Paris in my mid twenties. This was heaven for a foodie like me, daily trips to my local market, glorious food everywhere.
While pregnant with my daughter, Nicole, now 22, I attended courses at Le Cordon Bleu. A few years later that included a stint in Copenhagen, London and back to Paris, my ex-husband, daughter and I moved to Los Angeles, for what we thought would be two years. Well, 17 years later a lot has happened. I changed careers to being an educator and worked in a private girls school, got divorced and then met the most wonderful man, my husband, Stuart. We married in January 2015. All the while, I continued my passion for cooking and food. Loving nothing more than trying out new recipes, experimenting in the kitchen and of course, eating. I have taught small group and private cooking lessons for 20 years now and as we embark on a new life in France in July 2015, I am so excited about the experiences awaiting us.
I look forward to discovering new foods and wines from every region of France and especially the Dordogne.
Food and life is about sharing and I can’t wait for you to join me in my adventures in my home and kitchen!

Visit Nadia’s lovely website – CLICK HERE

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