Venison is a meat I grew up eating which harnesses a unique field to table flavor. It also carries a heaping dose of nostalgia. My dad used to take me ice fishing when I was young with my brother and sister. We would play endless rounds of card games like Kingman’s Corner and Crazy 8’s and eat endless amounts of Snickers candy bars and venison hot sticks. Then, in a sugar crazed frenzy further fueled by soda pop, we’d take off out onto the ice and skate around in a sad attempt at hockey. Venison stroganoff is my take on a creamy comfort dish that reminds me of many winters at home as a kid.
After meeting my father for the first time, my husband fell in love with the annual deer hunting adventure and spends a long weekend each year hanging out with the guys in the woods dangling from trees in freezing temps and walking through marsh and bramble in pursuit of deer (sounds like a GREAT time doesn’t it?? ha!). Some years are more prosperous than others and this year his efforts were rewarded with a nice stash of venison in our freezer. Venison stroganoff is a simple Hungarian style dish that easily blends the unique flavor of this lean game meat into a sauce perfect for ladling over pasta or smashed potatoes. You can also use beef in this recipe but if you have access to venison, give it a shot as this venison stroganoff will rock your socks off!!
- 2 pounds venison (roast or steaks) cut into thin strips against the grain
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup shallots or red onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 pound cremini or shitake mushrooms, sliced or diced
- 2 cups beef stock
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons cognac or red wine
- ¾ cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon spicy Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped dill
- 1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika
- 1 tablespoons flour mixed in a slurry with 2 tablespoons water to thicken if desired
- Season meat with a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
- Heat two tablespoons of butter on medium high in a large cast iron skillet and when it is hot, brown meat on each side until barely pink.
- Transfer meat to a dish and set aside. Do not drain juices.
- In the same skillet, add the rest of the butter and sauté shallots and garlic just until translucent.
- Add mushrooms with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and sauté until mushrooms start to brown and liquid evaporates.
- Add broth, cognac and worchestershire. Simmer until liquid coats mushrooms about 10 minutes.
- Stir in sour cream and mustard.
- Add reserved browned meat and any accumulated juices.
- Stir in dill and paprika.
- If you desire a thicker sauce, stir in a slurry of flour mixed with water until desired thickness.
- Serve hot as a thick stew, over egg noodles or over mashed potatoes.