Unfortunately the Winter has been especially brutal in Ireland this year, well not that I can compare cause I only moved here 6 months ago but that’s what everyone keeps telling me. Storms have been sweeping the country day after day for weeks now, with no end in sight yet. With the rain continuously pouring down outside my window, there was only one thing I could think of to do: spend all day in the kitchen and forget about the brutal weather. I ended up creating 3 new recipes in one day, and one of them is for a delicious winter stew with wild boar. If you can’t find boar in your local butcher or supermarket, you can replace it by deer, or any other wild animal you can find.
The result is a delicious stew that has strong warm winter flavours, including red wine, chestnut mushrooms and a hint of herbs and spices like thyme, rosemary, bay leaves and garlic powder. You can serve it with mashed potatoes, rice, chips/fries, a healthy green salad or sweet potato fries.
Serves: 5 people
- 1kg wild boar
- 1l red wine
- 400ml beef fond (if you can find wild fond: even better!)
- 2 large onions
- 250g bacon cubes
- 250g chestnut mushrooms
- 5 large carrots
- 5 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon of thyme
- 1/2 tablespoon of rosemary
- 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
- 5 tablespoons of flour
- Optional: cornstarch
Cut the meat up in chunks of about 4 cm, pat them dry with kitchen paper and dip them in a bowl of flour with a few grinds of pepper, one by one. Slice your carrots up in thin slices and cut your mushrooms up as well in slightly thicker slices. Cut the onion up in small pieces as well.
Heat up some olive oil in a large saucepan and fry the onions for a couple of minutes and then add the wild meat. Make sure your pan isn’t overcrowded, if it is, you’re better off cooking the meat in batches as your meat will be cooked instead of fried/baked. Always use the same pan though and don’t clean it up in between batches! You can of course use a frying pan and after adding the wine, you can transfer it all to a stewing pot. It’s just important that the wine can interact with the brown bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pan. If you can continue the recipe in one pan, you will get more flavour out of those browned bits of course.
Add the bacon once the meat is starting to brown and continue to fry both bacon and meat. Now add the wine, fond, bay leaves, thyme, rosemary and garlic powder and turn the heat down. Let it simmer for an hour at low heat, with the lid on.
Once the hour is up, add the carrots and mushrooms, put the lid back on and continue for another half hour or until your meat is tender enough. Now if you want, you can add some cornstarch to make the sauce thicker, depending on what you’re serving it with. I really wanted a thicker sauce to go along with the fries I was serving, so it wouldn’t run all over the plate and make the fries soggy. So I added a couple of tablespoons until I was pleased with the thickness (make sure to follow the instructions on the package, all I had to do was add it, bring to a boil and stir the entire time).
Serve it with a side dish of your liking and enjoy!