Venison Goulash: Gulgas di Capriolo
- 4 pounds venison shoulder
- 1 carrot, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 ribs celery, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 Spanish onions, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 6 sage leaves
- 6 cloves garlic
- 6 peppercorns
- 6 juniper berries
- 1 bottle dry red wine
- 1/4 cup lard
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 4 ounces speck, cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 4 cloves
- 1 cup sour cream
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Grated montasio, for garnish
Trim the venison of any connective tissue, and cut it into 2 by 1-inch cubes. In a 6-quart pot, combine the carrot, celery, onions, rosemary, thyme, sage, garlic, peppercorns, juniper berries, and red wine and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, allow the marinade to cool, and submerge the venison pieces. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry with towels, reserving marinade. In a heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, heat the lard until smoking. Season the venison with salt and pepper and place 4 to 5 pieces at a time in the pan. Sear until deep golden brown all over, then remove to a plate. Repeat the process until all the meat is done. Add the flour and speck to the pan and bring to a boil. Add the cinnamon, cloves, remaining marinade and meat, including juices exuded onto the plate, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook slowly for 1 1/4 hours, or until the meat is very tender. Remove from the heat and discard the herb sprigs, bay leaf, garlic, peppercorns, and juniper berries. Stir in the sour cream, sprinkle with parsley, check for seasoning, and serve immediately garnished with montasio.
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