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It’s Scottish Food Fortnight and National Venison Day

It’s Scottish Food Fortnight and there are many events happening throughout the country to celebrate the wonderful food the country produces. Retailers, including Deli’s, farm shops and farmers markets are taking part along with Food festival in many parts of the country.

Using as much local and home grown produce is something I always do but this week I’m making an extra special effort to ensure that I use only those, at least for the main ingredients of family meals.

As well as being Scottish food fortnight it’s also National Venison day ….this recipe is made with venison from an Argyllshire company, Winston Churchill Venison., so it fits the bill on both accounts. I’ve been using their wild venison since they started out in business in 80s when they  were a small concern selling to friends and family, although they are now a familiar face at Farmers Markets in the West of Scotland. The venison chorizo mentioned in the leftover recipe isproduced by Great Glen Game and details of stockists can be found on their website. http://www.greatglengame.co.uk

Venison Meatballs

1 lb Venison Mince

1 onion finely chopped

2 Garlic cloves crushed

Large handful of chopped Flat leaf parsley

4 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

4oz breadcrumbs

1 egg

Olive oil or Rapeseed oil.

Sauce

1 Onion – Finely chopped

1 Carrot finely chopped

1 Celery stick – finely chopped

3 Garlic cloves – crushed

2 400g tins of chopped tomatoes

Approx half a bottle of red wine

I Tbsp Redcurrant jelly

Grated Parmesan to serve

Put the Venison mince, breadcrumbs, Parmesan and flat leaf parsley in a large bowl. Heat the oil and add the onion and garlic ( from the meatball ingredients) to the pan and cook for a few minutes until soft. Add to the bowl with the venison and other ingredients, season well, mix well and form into small meatballs. This quantity will make approximately 24.

Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan and brown the meatballs and remove from the pan. Make the sauce by gently frying the onion, garlic, carrot and celery for about 5 minutes. Add the tinned tomatoes, red wine and herbs, bring to the boil and simmer for around 15 minutes. Stir in the redcurrant jelly and stir to dissolve and the add the meatballs to the sauce and continue cooking for about 15 – 20 minutes.

Serve with pasta of your choice and grated Parmesan or for a real Scottish flavour, grated mature cheddar.

Cooks notes.

I served the meatballs on a bed of linguine, however it also works well with penne or rigatoni although if using these I would add the pasta to the meatball sauce and gently mix well.

Leftovers

My boys always make good use of leftovers and the meatballs are delicious served hot  in a warm baguette with chopped venison chorizo, add grated mature cheddar and melt under a hot grill.

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