Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Venison Stew

Venison arrives from the Latin word "venor" meaning to hunt or pursue. During the Norman invasion of England in the 11th century, the word entered into English. Originally meaning any animal from the families Cervidae (deer), Leporidae (hares), and Suidae (wild pigs), and certain species of the genus Capra (goats and ibex), such as elk, red deer, fallow deer, roe deer, moose, reindeer/caribou, pronghorn, brown hare, arctic hare, blue hare, wild boar, and ibex, but its usage is now almost entirely restricted to the flesh of various species of deer.

Deer were an ample meat along the frontier. The hides (skins) used for clothing by early Colonial American settlers and Native American Indians.  By 1750, deer were becoming harder to find in Cherokee territory. So large was the scale of the trade that in time deer became nearly extinct in the southeast. It also radically altered the social make-up of the Cherokee because the men were increasingly absent from towns (for long periods to hunt deer). Concurrently, Cherokee society was undergoing a growing dependence on European trade goods. These events contributed to growing tensions and conflict between the Indian tribes themselves, as well as with the Europeans.   Deerskin were used to produce buckskin, as well as chamois like leather used for the making of gloves, bookbinding, and many other things.


1 lb. pork sausage
2-4 lb venison or beef
2 medium yellow onions
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp each Salt & pepper 
2 tbsp sugar,  honey  or  (maple syrup)
1 tsp each Crushed sage & oregano seasoning
1 large can V-8 juice or make your own with instruction below:
2 lb. chopped carrots
6-8 medium to large potatoes
Any other vegetables desired
1-2 cups black coffee
2 sliced and jalapeno peppers  discarding seeds


In a skillet, brown the venison or stew beef well. Use a #12 deep Dutch oven or, a round bottom deep 10 qt cast iron pot. Cook the pork sausage and 2 onions, coarsely chopped. Cook over medium heat until onions are translucent. Keep stirred until V-8 juice is added. Add two cloves of minced garlic, sage and oregano. Add browned venison or stew beef, salt & pepper (sugar to taste, optional). (Add jalapenos chopped fine if desired.) Add the black coffee enough to almost cover the meat (acts as a tenderizer). Bring to a boil until the broth reduces to 1/2 to 2/3. Keep it stirred. Add V8 juice and vegetables. Bring to boil again, reduce to a simmer. Simmer until vegetables are cooked. Stir occasionally to avoid sticking. Cooks nicely over a campfire suspended from a tripod. Feeds 6-8. Serve hot with corn bread. 

Before can tomato juice one needed to precook tomatoes to make the juice: Most stews along the trail drives would not have used tomatoes unless they happen to trade with a sod buster (farmer) along the trail or made good use of a general store. (1) bushel of tomatoes weighs 53 pounds. This would require cooking many tomatoes down first to make 1 quart of juice: Approximately 5 lbs. as one pound of tomatoes will yield about 1 cup of pulp after peeling and seeding.

How many tomatoes are in a pound varies according to type:
Beefsteak: 1/2 to 1
Better Boy: 2 to 3
Big Boy: 3 to 4
Early Girl: 3 to 4
Pixie: 30
Roma: 8
Sicilian Heart: 1 to 2
Sunray: 3
Celebrity: 3-4

1. Wash and core tomatoes.
2. Put tomatoes into a large pot (4-6 qt Dutch Oven). Squeeze/smash with hands.
3. Pour in 1 qt of water
3. Cover and heat tomatoes until boiling. Stir as needed to prevent sticking (scorched tomatoes are awful!!).
4. Add water as necessary but boil down for about 1 hour.
5. Pour hot tomatoes into a fine mesh strainer (TAMIS) to drain off the watery juice.
6. After about 10-20 minutes of draining, run tomatoes through a (Tamis) colander or squeezer/juicer, which removes the skins and seeds.Discard skins from the Tamis stainer and use juice collected as tomato juice.

Tamis used long before blenders to puree foods

No comments:

Post a Comment