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Old 02-17-2006, 03:57 PM   #1
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Suggestions for Pan Slow Cooked Venison?

My MIL recently had DH and I over for dinner and served a chuck roast slow cooked (350 for about 2 1/2 hours) in a pan with water, sherry, garlic, onion, and mushrooms. It was delicious - very moist and tender. So DH and I had some frozen venison roast that we wanted to try to cook this way (getting venison tender is always the challenge!)

Anyway, the venison came out tender but dry. I know its a much less fatty meat than the beef so I'm guessing that's why. Any suggestions to keep the venison tender, but still moist? More liquid? Less cooking time?


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Old 02-17-2006, 04:05 PM   #2
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amy, like you said, lean meat, even when it's braised will not get more moist. the moistness that i think that you're looking for is in the fat marbling.

however, you can try to keep in the juices as much as possible by searing the roast first, then braising it.
you could also try wrapping it in bacon, or that fat netting that i've seen chefs use (can't remember the name).
another trick is to make a spice rub, pressing it into the roast, then searing it. the rub forms sort of a crust that'll help retain the juices.
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Old 02-17-2006, 05:43 PM   #3
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My experience working with venison is more with the steak type cuts but you're right, it's much leaner than beef. We grill it no more than medium rare, even if the guest requests it to be cooked more because we've gotten several sent back because the guest felt that it was too dry, even though they were the one that requested it done that way. With venison roasts, I don't think you'll ever get it to be as juicy as a beef roast. Tender yes, juicy no. Here are some tips that may help you though:
  • Always slow cook using moisture, never dry roast the venison. Baste it with the cooking liquid often. When braising, make sure that the liquid comes up at the very least, 3/4 the way up the roast. If all possible, have enough liquid to where it's close to the top of the roast.
  • Try lowering your heat and increasing the cooking time. Braise it at maybe 250 instead of 350.
  • Slice it only just before you're serving it. Venison dries out quickly after being exposed to air. A slice can dry out within a couple of minutes
  • Have a good sauce ready. I would make a jus lie so that the sauce clings to the meat. This will help give it moisture while you're eating it.
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Old 02-17-2006, 06:52 PM   #4
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Bucky, that netting is the lacy fat that surrounds the stomach, but I can't think of the name either.

Last year HB and the grandson brought home over 350 lbs. of venison. We made several kinds of sausage, but I had plenty to cook and experiment with. (We ate it all, by the way, except for a bit of sausage that's left.)

The guys are right, Amy. It's not hard to get it tender, but it is very lean, so does tend to taste dry.
It's one of those things you cook a very short time at a high temperature, or a long time at a low temperature. HB has brought home fresh tenderloins that he marinated and seared quickly in a skillet, let sit for a few moments, then sliced. They are rare, tender and delicious, but you do have to like the venison taste. It isn't beef. I served them with a horseradish sauce.
I've done venison like a pot roast with vegies and gravy, and it's OK, but the best luck I've had is in a crock pot, with the ubiquitous dry onion soup mix and canned mushroom soup. However you cook it, it needs a sauce. That's why vension BBQ's, Italian Venison, Swiss venison steak, and venison chili are so popular.
Adding fat to it, as Bucky suggested, does add to the taste, but if you're eating venison for health, as I do, the bacon does negate the health benefits.

I do love bacon, though.
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Old 03-06-2006, 12:09 PM   #5
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I made venison stroganof this weekend from a cut you described. First I fried up a pan full of bacon. In the fat I cooked onions, then hubby and I worked a tag team to sear the venison (cut into about 1/2 inch cubes) and tossed into a simmering pot of stock, red wine, garlic, and the aformentioned onions. Deglazed the pan with red wine. Cooked on very low heat for the afternoon, then thickened with a cup of sour cream, 1/2 can of tomato paste, and a tablespoon of wondra flour, mixed, then put into the "stew". I'm not even mentioning S&P and paprika, which were to taste. I think the thing that kept the meat moist was that searing, then slow cooking.
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