Venison and prune potjie


Serves: 4-6

Prep: 20 min, plus 30 mins soaking
Cook: 2 hrs 30 min


For the venison

25g butter or olive oil
1kg boneless venison, cubed
70g streaky bacon, (optional)
1 onion, finely diced
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 tbsp Flour
1 tsp chopped sage leaves
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
400g prunes, soaked in 750ml warm water for 30 minutes
750ml soaking liquor, from the prunes
250ml Red wine
4 Tomatoes
1/2 lemon, juice only
1 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the lime yam mash

1.5kg sweet potatoes or yams, peeled
1 tbsp Butter
75ml double cream
1/4 tsp lime juice
freshly ground salt and pepper


1. To make the venison; heat a potjie or large heavy pan over coals (or on a hob) and add the butter or oil.

2. Lightly season the venison with salt and black pepper, and place carefully into the pot. Add the bacon and gently brown all over.

3. Add the onion and cook over a moderate heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and mix well.

4. Sprinkle over the flour and stir well, cooking for a further 2-3 minutes as the flour absorbs the fats.

5. Add the sage, nutmeg and prunes and stir well.

6. Add all the liquids except the lemon juice and then the tomatoes. Bring to the simmer and cover. Cook gently for 1 ½- 2 hours, or until the beef is tender.

7. Remove the lid, sprinkle over the parsley and add the lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

8. To make the lime sweet potato mash; cut the sweet potatoes into equal 3cm cubes. Place them in a pan, cover with water and simmer for about 10-15 minutes or until tender.

9. Drain the sweet potatoes and return to the heat to dry off.

10. Purée the potatoes by hand and add the butter, cream, ginger and seasoning. Finally, add the lime juice and mix well until smooth.

11. Serve the venison and prune potjie with a generous spoonful of the sweet potato mash.

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