Venison and Chestnut Casserole

A twist on a classic dish.

[quicklook-recipe prep_time=”20 min” cook_time=”105 min” serves=”4″ details=”” ]

[ingredients-list title=”Ingredients” serving_size=””]

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless venison shoulder, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 cooked fresh beets, each cut into 6 wedges
  • Grated zest and juice of 1/2 large orange
  • 1/2 cup port wine
  • 1 1/4 cup low-fat reduced-sodium beef broth


  • 3 1/2 ounces vacuum-packed peeled whole chestnuts
  • 3 carrots, halved lengthwise, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 piece ginger (2 inches), grated
  • 4 shallots, unpeeled but roots sliced off
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 tablespoons nonfat milk
  • Salt and pepper


[step-list-wrapper title=”How to make it” time=”About 2 hours”]
[step-item number=”1″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Preheat the oven to 350°F. Heat half of the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the venison in 1 layer and let it brown on each side for about 5 minutes, turning once. Do this in 2 batches if necessary. Using a slotted spoon, remove the meat from the pan and set it aside on a plate.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”2″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Add the sliced onions to the Dutch oven and stir well. Cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are softened and just beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”3″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Add the garlic, beets, orange zest, and juice. Stir well, then return the venison and its juices to the pan, and add the port and beef stock. Bring to a simmer. Cover the pan and transfer to the oven. Cook until the venison is tender, about 1 hour and 20 minutes, adding the chestnuts in the last 15 minutes of cooking.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”4″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Meanwhile, place the carrots, ginger, and shallots in a roasting pan, add the remaining oil, and stir until the vegetables are evenly coated. Place in the oven above the Dutch oven and roast for 1 hour, turning the vegetables over halfway through the cooking time.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”5″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Blend the flour with the milk to make a paste. Move the Dutch oven from the oven to the top of the stove. Place over medium-high heat and add the paste a little at a time, whisking constantly and simmering until the gravy thickens. Season to taste. Serve the venison casserole hot, with the roasted vegetables.[/step-item]


[cooking_tip]Alcohol gives color and richness as well as flavor to the casserole, but it can be left out — just add more broth.[/cooking_tip]

[nutrition-info calories=”341″ calories_fat=”” fat=”8g” sat_fat=”2g” choles=”96mg” sodium=”241mg” carbs=”34g” sugars=”” protein=”30g” fiber=”5g”]


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Originally Published in Reader's Digest