Elk Bourguignon Recipe
By Chef Lance Lewis
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 4 hours
Elk Bourguignon is a hearty and flavorful dish that takes a classic French recipe and gives it a wild twist with tender chunks of elk meat. Slow cooked to perfection in a rich red wine sauce, this dish is perfect for a special occasion or a comforting meal at home. Follow our step-by-step guide to create a masterpiece that will leave your taste buds craving for more.
Elk Bourguignon Ingredients
- 2 pounds of Elk round, cut into 1 ½ x 1 ½ inch chunks
- 6 strips of Thick Cut Bacon, cut into 1-inch sections
- 3 tablespoons of High-Temp Neutral Oil (canola, avocado, peanut)
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1 to 2-inch segments
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons of All-Purpose Flour (AP Flour)
- 32 ounces of Beef Bone Stock
- 1 bottle of Bold Red Wine (Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot)
- 2 tablespoons of Tomato paste
- 2 sprigs of Thyme and Rosemary
- 1 Bay Leaf (tied together with butchers’ twine with Thyme and Rosemary)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Onion and Mushroom Mixture Ingredients
- 8 to 10 Pearl Onions, peeled
- 8 to 10 White Mushrooms, quartered
- 2 strips of Thick Cut Bacon, cut into 1-inch sections
- 2 tablespoons of High-Temp Neutral Oil (canola, avocado, peanut)
- 2 sprigs of Thyme and Rosemary
Elk Bourguignon Instructions
- In a Dutch oven or brazier, add 1 strip of bacon and cover with approximately an inch of water. Bring to a simmer and allow it to cook until all the water has evaporated, and the bacon becomes crispy. This process helps render more fat without burning the bacon. Once done, remove the crispy bacon and set it aside.
- Add the neutral oil to the bacon fat left in the Dutch oven.
- Lightly salt the elk cubes and dust all sides with flour. Brown the elk in the bacon and oil mixture over medium heat until they turn golden brown. Once browned, set the elk aside with the bacon.
- Sauté the diced onions and carrots until the onions become translucent and start to slightly color.
- Add minced garlic, tomato paste, and the herb bundle (thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf). Sauté until the garlic and herbs release their fragrances.
- Pour in the entire bottle of red wine, making sure to scrape up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pot.
- Return the browned elk meat and bacon to the pot, and then add all of the beef stock. Bring the mixture to a simmer.
- Once simmering, remove the pot from the stovetop and place it in a preheated 325-degree oven.
- Check the stew every hour for the tenderness of the meat. Around the three-hour mark, you may notice that the meat is cooked but slightly dry due to the elk's low fat content. If this happens, reduce the heat to 225 degrees and allow it to cook for another hour until tender.
Onion and Mushroom Mixture Instructions
- Prepare the onions and mushrooms: In a separate skillet, place the other strip of bacon and cover with water. Bring to a simmer, allowing the water to evaporate and the bacon to render its fat. Once the bacon is crispy and the fat has rendered, remove the bacon.
- Add a couple of tablespoons of high-temp oil to the skillet and heat over medium heat. Place a sprig of thyme, garlic cloves, and pearl onions in the pan. Cook until the onions develop a dark chocolate color, then remove and set aside.
- Add the quartered mushrooms to the skillet and cook until they begin to soften and show color.
- During the final hour of cooking, add the mushrooms and onions to the stew.
Serve the Elk Bourguignon over rice, potatoes, or egg noodles. If the stew seems a little too thin, remove the meat from the pot and simmer the liquid on the stovetop until it reaches your desired thickness.
Like most stews, this dish improves in flavor the next day after being refrigerated. As the stew cools the oils and flavors of all the ingredients will emulsify and you end up with a more balanced flavor. To reheat, the stove top is best, but the microwave will do. Enjoy the rich and savory flavors of this Elk Bourguignon - a culinary masterpiece that's worth every bit of effort you put into it.
Quick Chef’s Tip: This dish is convenient to store, freezes beautifully, and can sustain a group of people for several days. Meals like this can be prepared months in advance and maintain their quality when vacuum sealed.
After Bourguignon has cooled to room temperature it is safe to place in the refrigerator. Stew will keep for up to four days refrigerated. Vacuum seal and freeze to store for longer periods. To reheat from frozen, place in a heated steamer pot for 30 min for a perfect camp meal.