March 29, 2021

Pappardelle With Venison, Mushrooms & Carrots

Recipe: Catherine & John Pawson

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, plus overnight marinating

Try this Pappardelle With Venison, Mushrooms & Carrots recipe from the new cookbook, Home Farm Cooking.

Venison haunch is delicious roasted until the meat is still pink in the middle, but also rewards from slower cooking, which brings out its rich flavors and ensures the meat is meltingly tender — the diet and exercise of wild deer means that venison does not have the marbling of fat typical of domestically reared animals, which can make it vulnerable to toughness. This is a hearty, comforting dish. It is perfectly complemented by the woodiness of mushrooms and the pasta, which takes up the juices.


  • 1 kg/2 1⁄4 lb. venison haunch, trimmed and diced
  • 200 mL/7 fl oz. (3⁄4 cup plus 1 tbsp) red wine
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • Olive oil, for frying
  • 60 g/2 oz. smoked pancetta, diced
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, trimmed, peeled and cubed
  • 3 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 25 g/3⁄4 oz. (2 tbsp) all-purpose flour
  • 1.2 L/40 fl oz. (5 cups) chicken stock
  • 400 g/14 oz. dried pappardelle pasta
  • 450 g/1 lb. seasonal wild mushrooms of choice, sliced
  • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 50 g/2 oz. Parmesan cheese, finely grated, to serve


Yield: Serves 6

  1. The day before you want to serve this dish, put the diced venison into a large nonreactive container, add the wine and crushed clove of garlic, cover and place in the refrigerator, turning the meat once or twice.
  2. The next day, preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F /Gas Mark 3. Drain the venison and pat dry. Keep the marinade (discarding the garlic) and set aside.
  3. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and sear the venison in batches, cooking each batch for a few minutes until browned. Transfer the browned meat to a lidded casserole dish with a slotted spoon. Once all the meat is browned, add the diced pancetta to the same frying pan and fry until it has rendered most of its fat and started to become crispy, then remove and set aside. Add the onion to the pan and cook for 5–10 minutes until softened and lightly golden, then add the carrot, tomato purée, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and flour and return the pancetta to the pan.
  4. Cook for a couple of minutes, then pour in the reserved marinade, little by little, stirring and letting it bubble and reduce. Add the stock, stirring to avoid any lumps, then pour it over the venison in the casserole. Cover and transfer to the oven for about 2 1⁄2 hours, or until the venison is soft and tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water according to the instructions on the package, then drain.
  5. Meanwhile, heat a little oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the mushrooms and sauté for 10–15 minutes until they have released their water, softened and are slightly crisped at the edges. Add the mushrooms to the venison, stir in the pasta, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve straight away, with the grated Parmesan on the side.

Gilbert McCarragher


Recipes reprinted from Home Farm Cooking, by Catherine and John Pawson. © 2021 Phaidon Press.