Tonight was a hotpot, but not the version made famous by the Lancastrians.
Vension is becoming easily available nowdays and I used it in this alternative version along with a quick pickled red cabbage. Fab.
- 1 Tbsp oil
- 1 thinly sliced large red onion
- 2 sliced garlic cloves
- 2 bay leaves, and a tsp each of chopped thyme and rosemary
- 300g diced venison
- 2 chopped carrots or 2 large handfuls of chantenay carrot, cleaned
- 4 fist sized maris piper (or similar) potatoes.
- 2 glasses of red wine
- Beef stock (enough to cover)
- Good ‘lug’ of Worcestershire Sauce.
- Cornflour paste made from 1 tsp cornflour to 2 tsp water
For the pickled cabbage.
- Half a red cabbage
- 50ml red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- Water to cover
Heat the oven to 180°c (gas 4).
I used a cast iron casserole pot for this, as it’s hob-proof. If not, you’ll need to do the frying separately.
Heat the oil in the pot and brown the venison (in two batches if necessary), remove with a slotted spoon and set aside (leaving the oil in the pan). Add the onions and garlic and fry until softened.
Return the meat and add the wine (use it to deglaze the pan), the carrots and the herbs. Top up with stock to just cover. Stir in a generous lug of Worcestershire Sauce (it’s practically the law) and a Tbsp of the cornflour mixture.
Slice the potatoes fairly thinly (no need to peel, but clean well if you don’t) and place on top in two-three layers.
Put the lid on and place in the oven for 3 hours. 30 minutes before the end, take the lid off and brush with butter, or a little oil to crisp them up.
Take out the oven and rest/cool slightly whilst making the cabbage:
Slice the cabbage, pull apart the layers and place it in a sauce pan. Add the ingredients and bring to the boil. Put a lid on and simmer for 5-6 minutes until just done. MIx well and serve it up with a generous helping of the hotpot