Winter Recipes: Venison Stew, Buttermilk Cornbread, Chocolate-Walnut Toffee
Whether served for a hearty supper or festive holiday gathering, these comforting, easy-to-make recipes are sure to delight friends and family.
By Scott Jones | Photos By Jason Wallis
Web Exclusive: Chocolate-Walnut Toffee
If you’re not a fan of white chocolate, feel free to use all semi-sweet chocolate morsels instead. Substitute your favorite nut—slivered almonds, chopped pecans—in place of the walnuts.
1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 sleeve of saltine crackers
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1 cup white chocolate morsels
- Preheat oven to 350°. Bake walnuts in a single layer in a shallow pan 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through.
- Meantime, line a 15- x 10-inch jellyroll pan with nonstick aluminum foil. Arrange crackers in prepared pan, breaking as necessary to fit and completely cover bottom of pan.
- Bring butter and brown sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Boil, stirring constantly, 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla extract.
- Pour mixture over crackers in pan; spread over crackers.
- Bake at 350° for 13 minutes. (Mixture will start to bubble at about 10 minutes. Continue to bake to 13 minutes.) Remove pan from oven and add peanut butter in dollops; return pan to oven for 1 to 2 minutes or until peanut butter begins to melt. Remove pan from oven to a wire rack. (Mixture will still be bubbly.) Spread peanut butter over brittle. Sprinkle top with chocolate and white chocolate morsels; let stand 1 minute or until morsels soften. Spread morsels over brittle. Sprinkle with walnuts; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Place pan in refrigerator; chill 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm. Break into about 20 pieces. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week in refrigerator.
Prep: 15 min. Cook: 5 to 7 min. Bake: 15 min. Stand: 30 min. Chill: 30 min. Yield: About 1 1/2 pounds
Hunter’s Venison Stew
3 pounds boneless venison,* cut into 1-inch cubes
1/4 cup, plus 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup red wine**
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 (14 1/2-ounce) containers beef broth
2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
3 carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 (8-ounce) package fresh mushrooms, quartered
- Pat venison cubes with paper towels to absorb excess moisture; place in a large bowl. Combine 1/4 cup flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl; sprinkle over venison, and toss well with hands to coat.
- Cook venison in batches in hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, 4 to 6 minutes or until browned on all sides. Remove venison.
- Add onion and garlic, and cook 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Add remaining 2 Tablespoons flour, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add red wine, stirring to loosen particles from bottom of Dutch oven; cook until liquid is reduced by half. Add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Add venison, broth and Italian seasoning. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, 1 hour.
- Add carrots, sweet potatoes and mushrooms. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until venison is tender.
* 3 pounds boneless beef roast may be substituted.
** Beef broth may be substituted.
Prep: 30 min. Cook: 3 hrs. Yield: 8 servings
2 to 3 teaspoons bacon drippings or vegetable oil
2 cups buttermilk
1 large egg
1 3/4 cups white cornmeal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
- Coat bottom and sides of a 10-inch cast-iron skillet with bacon drippings; heat in a 450°F oven for 10 minutes.
- Whisk together buttermilk and egg. Add cornmeal, stirring well.
- Stir in baking powder, baking soda and salt. Pour batter into hot skillet.
- Bake at 450°F for 15 minutes. Serve with butter, if desired.
Prep: 15 min. Bake: 15 min. Yield: 6 to 8 servings