I recently attended a wild game cooking class in Reno that was put on by both The Nevada Department of Wildlife and Nothing To It Culinary Center. The class highlighted different cooking methods and recipes using venison, sheep, antelope and elk. Towards the end of the class, Chef Lara Ritchie shared a Venison Gumbo recipe that used a rich chocolate roux as the base of the gumbo. I was so impressed with the flavor of this gumbo that I thought I would share it on the website.
I adapted Chef Lara Ritchie’s Venison Gumbo recipe for the recipe that follows. Thank you for a wonderful recipe.
Substitute venison or antelope meat.
- 3 tablespoons + 1/2 cup canola oil
- 2 pounds elk meat, cubed
- Salt and pepper
- 3/4 cup flour
- 2 cups celery, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 red or green bell pepper, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 cups beef broth
- 1/2 Andoille sausage, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
- 1/2 teaspoon Filé powder (Gumbo Filé)
- Cooked white rice or quinoa
Tenderize cubed meat and season with salt, pepper and 1/4 cup flour. Shake off excess. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. Sear the meat in the hot oil until browned on all sides. You may need to do this in batches so not to crowd the pan. Remove meat and set aside.
Add celery, onions and peppers to the pot and cook until soft about 10 minutes. Remove and set aside. Add the remaining oil to the pot. When the oil is hot slowly add the 1/2 cup of flour stirring constantly. Continue to stir the flour and oil together until the color begins to darken to a rich chocolate color about 7-8 minutes. Adjust your heat if needed so not to scorch the roux.
Add the vegetables, meat, sausage, oregano, basil, thyme and garlic back to the pot. Gently stir everything together. Add the beef broth and bay leaf and reduce heat to low. Simmer uncovered for an hour or until meat is tender. Before serving, add the Filé powder to the gumbo and stir together.
Serve the elk gumbo along with cooked rice. Garnish with chopped green onions and hot sauce.