My father, grandfather and Uncle all went hunting together when I was growing up so we ate quite a variety of game meats. I was fine with eating the rabbit...that is until I saw the cute little furry thing blood stained being carried in the house by my father. I'd like to say the sight of that rabbit sent me running towards vegetarianism but sadly it did not. It merely kept me from partaking in rabbit for a short time.
I very much enjoyed the pheasant it was very mild in flavor not gamey at all but I do have to say I had a real hard time with the venison. My family loved it but no matter how many different ways that it was prepared I still found it too strong and much too gamey.
Over the years I continued to try venison in various forms but it wasn't until I was in my early thirties that I really developed a love for it. One of my favorite preparations using venison is chili. I actually think chili tastes better with venison than it does with any other type of meat. I am given a great deal of venison meat each year so I am always trying to come up with different ways to make it so we don't get bored eating the same old thing over and over again. I have hit on a couple really great flavor combinations using venison which I will share with all of you in future posts. For now lets start with a truly delicious recipe for venison chili of course if you are unable to get any venison you may substitute any meat of your choosing.
2 lbs. venison, cubed or ground
4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
4 lg. tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2 med. onions, coarsely chopped
2 bell peppers, large dice
1 Jalapeno pepper, remove seeds and mince finely
2 cups of water
2 tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tbsp. ground cumin
1/4 cup of molasses
1 cup of red wine
4 tbsp. cooking oil
1 tbsp. sweet basil
1/2 tbsp. black pepper, coarsely ground
1 tsp. salt
In a large pot, sauté venison in hot oil until slightly browned. Add garlic, onion, and bell pepper; continue to sauté until onion is translucent. Add water, tomatoes, jalapeno pepper, chili powder, cumin, molasses, salt, pepper, and basil; simmer for at least 2 hours. 30 minutes before serving, add red wine.