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It’s deer season in Virginia so I’ll some time in the woods hunting instead of showing property.  We enjoy cooking with venison at Kamp Karen.  I’ve gotten requests for my Venison Stew recipe, so hear goes.

I used to make this following the Bourbon and Buck Stew recipe found in the L.L. Bean Game & Fish Cookbook (currently out of print).  Over the years someone borrowed without returning the cookbook or it got lost in a move.  A few years back dear friends gave me another copy.  I’ve altered the recipe over the years most recently adding a slow cooker (large crock pot).

  • 3 Pounds venison trimmed of fat, silver skin, etc. (very important for a tasty stew!) cut into bite sized pieces (During preparation, I spend the most time trimming the meat.)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 table spoons olive oil or bacon grease
  • 3 medium onions finely diced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 4 cloves garlic diced
  • 1 Teaspoon minced fresh rosemary (we have several rosemary bushes at Kamp Karen)
  • 3 Cups chopped tomatoes
  • 5 ounces bourbon
  • 2 Tablespoons beef bouillon powder
  • water

In a paper bag mix flour salt and pepper while heating a large skillet with some of the oil coating the bottom.  In batches toss venison pieces in flour mixture to coat then brown in the skillet.  Once venison is browned on all sides, transfer to the slow cooker set on low.  Continue browning venison in batches and adding oil to skillet as needed.

After browning the venison, add a bit more oil to the pan and saute the onions, green peppers, garlic and rosemary until the green peppers are soft then transfer to the slow cooker.

Stir into the slow cooker tomatoes, bourbon, beef bullion powder and enough water to cover.  Cook on high, stirring every few minutes, till the stew bubbles then return to low for six hours.  Stir occasionally and add water to keep stew covered.  A thick gravy will develop as the stew cooks and then additional water should not be needed.

At this point the venison stew can be eaten or cooled/frozen for future use.  We’ve found the stew improves (if possible!) with a day in the refrigerator and reheating for two hours in the slow cooker.  Our slow cooker has a removable cooking pot so we let the stew cool, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a day.  The stew also freezes well.

Let me know if you have any questions and how your venison stew turns out!