Tomato-and-Brown-Sugar-Braised Shoulder

Excerpted from Venison by Jon Wipfli. Copyright © 2017 Voyageur Press. Photography copyright © 2017 Matt Lien. Published by Voyageur Press, an imprint of The Quarto Group. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.
Photography copyright © 2017 Matt Lien.

 

By Jon Wipfli; photography by Matt Lien
This is a fairly easy braise that packs a ton of flavor. It’s sweet, savory, and has a nice hit of acidity. Cooking the venison at a low temperature very slowly is the key—a slow cook will help it stay tender. When making the grits, try to get them to a consistency of good oatmeal—too thin and they don’t mop up the braise, too thick and they’re not pleasant to eat.

INGREDIENTS

4 lbs. venison picnic shoulder

Grapeseed oil

½ cup champagne vinegar

Kosher salt

2 Tbls. butter

1 yellow onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

¼ cup packed brown sugar

2 tsp. ground black pepper

2 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. smoked paprika

1 (28-oz) can diced fire-roasted tomatoes

1 cup Bone Broth or chicken stock

 

PROCEDURE

Dice the picnic shoulder into ½-inch cubes, but don’t worry about being too accurate with this dice as it will begin to crumble a bit after cooking. Heat a large soup pot over high heat, and when it’s hot, add enough grapeseed oil to just cover the bottom of the pan. Add the venison to the pot in a single layer spread evenly across the bottom of the pan. (Success key: Do not stir the venison—you want it to start to develop deep colors on one side, and stirring will prevent this.) Turn the heat down to medium high and let the meat begin to brown, making sure it doesn’t burn in any one spot, which might require moving the pan around on the burner to accommodate for higher and lower temperature zones. During the cooking process, the meat will release a certain amount of moisture; let that cook off, and then you’ll notice the browning start to begin. Once there’s a solid, even brown layer on the bottom of the pan, add the champagne vinegar and a good pinch of salt and, with the help of the liquid, scrape up all of the brown bits until the bottom of the pan looks clean. Immediately turn down the heat until it’s at a very low simmer and reduce the vinegar until it’s 80 percent evaporated, about 10 minutes. Remove the meat and set it aside. Add the butter, onion, and garlic to the pan and sauté until the onion is just turning translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the meat, brown sugar, pepper, cumin, paprika, tomatoes with their juices, and bone broth. Bring to a simmer. Let simmer until the venison begins to soften, about 1½ to 2 hours. (Success key: Slow and low is the key here—simmering too aggressively will dry out the already lean protein.)

White Cheddar and Jalapeno Grits

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons butter

1 yellow onion, diced

1 jalapeño, diced

7 cups Bone Broth or chicken stock

1 cup ground grits

2 teaspoons kosher salt

½ teaspoon ground black pepper

1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

½ cup whole milk

 

PROCEDURE In a stockpot, melt the butter over medium-high heat, then add the onion and jalapeño. Let them cook together until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bone broth and bring it to a boil. Slowly whisk in the grits until they are fully incorporated. Turn the heat down until the grits are at a gentle simmer. Stir occasionally until the grits are fully cooked, about 45 minutes. Stir in the salt, pepper, cheese, and milk and add more stock if necessary. Place a large spoonful of grits in the bottom of a bowl and indent the pile with the back of a spoon. Add a large scoop of the braised venison with plenty of sauce into the indent.

Author of VENISON _ Jon Wipfli Photography copyright © 2017 Matt Lien.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About the Chef: Jon Wipfli is a Midwest native dedicated to cooking with local and sustainable ingredients. As graduate of the French Culinary Institute of New York, he has traveled the country developing an extensive cooking repertoire. Jon has worked in the kitchens of restaurants such as Marlow and Sons, Cookshop, and as sous chef at the James Beard Award-nominated Bachelor Farmer. He currently is the Executive Director of Culinary for Dave Anderson’s barbecue empire, Famous Dave’s. He lives in Minneapolis, Minn.

Excerpted from Venison by Jon Wipfli. Copyright © 2017 Voyageur Press. Photography copyright © 2017 Matt Lien. Published by Voyageur Press, an imprint of The Quarto Group. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

 

 

Categories: Big Game, Featured

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