We were enjoying sunny days and 40 degree temperatures, but alas, it has cooled down. No reason to complain as my parents in South Dakota are experiencing their 37th (or something close to that….) blizzard of the 2013-2014 winter season! Plus, Jethro doesn’t get coated with mud when everything freezes..
With the cooler temperatures, it was time to break out a new stew recipe. Our freezer was getting full as I spent an afternoon awhile back cooking large batches of dry beans and freezing them in serving-size baggies (Much cheaper than the cans and they taste fresher, too!). So to make some room, I figured we could use some of the chickpeas. And chickpeas instantly reminded me of a Moroccan-inspired stew.
I love making stews. They are straight-forward, healthy, and filling. They make excellent leftovers. And you can easily tailor them to the ingredients you have on hand.
A couple things to note about this recipe:
1) I used deer loins, so the meat just about melted in our mouths. Sooooo good. I’m imagining taking a bite as I write this…. Anyway… A tougher cut of meat will also work if you want to save some of the real tender meat for steaks.
2) Speaking of meat, our go-to marinade that has always resulted in tender, non-gamey steaks is equal parts soy sauce, olive oil, and orange juice (Some friends told us about this combo awhile back when we were just starting to eat more wild game…thanks Tina and Kyle!). Sometimes we will throw in other spices with it, too.
3) To grind the coriander, I have an extra coffee grinder just for spices. I love the flavor of coriander, but I don’t always like taking a bite of an entire seed. Grinding it into more of a powder seems to distribute the flavor throughout the stew.
Hearty stews, clean dogs, skiing….winter isn’t all bad!
- 2 pounds venison steaks, cut in chunks
- 2 gloves garlic, minced
- Juice of 1 large orange (or ¼ cup orange juice)
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2¾ tsp cumin
- 1½ - 1¾ tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- 1 large yam, peeled and chopped
- 1 golden potato, chopped
- 1 tomato, diced
- 8 oz can tomato sauce
- 2 cups beef broth
- 2 Tbsp Harissa
- 1 cup water
- 1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
- 2.5 cups chickpeas
- ½ tsp Kosher salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 slices of lemon
- 1 large bay leaf
- Dash of allspice
- Marinate venison for at least 3 hours (or up to a day or two).
- Scoop meat out of marinade, along with some of the oil that will be on top, and saute in a heavy pot with onions, garlic, cumin, coriander, and cinnamon.
- When meat is browned, add yams, potatoes, tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Stir to coat everything. (I also added a dash more coriander since I had extra.)
- Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a low boil.
- Discard lemons after 20 minutes.
- Simmer until potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes depending on the size of your potato chunks. The longer the stew sits and gently simmers, the better it is!
- Reheated stew will need more water added to it.