Venison pie with red onion marmalade


For the pastry
  • 450g/1lb plain flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 200g/7oz lard
  • 225ml/8fl oz milk
  • 225ml/8fl oz water
For the pie
  • dash olive oil
  • 2 banana shallots, finely sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 450g/1lb minced venison
  • 2 free-range eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp ground juniper berries
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tbsp thyme leaves
  • 1 tbsp flatleaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 450g/1lb venison steak, thinly sliced
For the jelly
  • 12g leaf gelatine
  • 500ml/18fl oz chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 10 peppercorns
For the red onion marmalade
  • 50g/2oz butter
  • 500g/1lb 2oz red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
  • 50g/2oz caster sugar
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves, picked
  • 150ml/5fl oz red wine
  • 75ml/3fl oz good red wine vinegar

Preparation method

  1. For the pastry, place the flour and salt into a bowl and make a well in the centre.

  2. Place the lard into a pan, along with the milk and water and bring to the boil.

  3. Pour the lard and water into the flour. Stir with a wooden spoon until thickened and all the flour is incorporated.

  4. Knead the pastry on a floured work surface until smooth and elastic. Shape the pastry into a ball, wrap in cling film and place in the fridge, while you prepare the pie.

  5. For the pie, preheat the oven to 170C/340F/Gas 3.

  6. Heat a frying pan until hot, add the olive oil, shallots and garlic and fry for 2-3 minutes until softened and just turning golden-brown. Remove from the heat and cool.

  7. Place the minced venison, half of the egg, the ground juniper berries, ground cloves, thyme and parsley into a bowl and mix thoroughly, using your hands.

  8. Add the cooled shallots, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and mix once more. Set aside.

  9. Remove the pastry from the fridge, roll it out with a rolling pin and press two-thirds of it into a game pie dish, reserving the remainder for the lid.

  10. Place a quarter of the mince mixture into the base of the lined dish, smoothing to the edges. Place one-third of the sliced venison on top and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Repeat with the remaining mince and steak, layering up to finish with a layer of mince.

  11. Place the remaining pastry on top and use your fingers and thumb to crimp the edges. Brush with beaten egg, reserving some of the egg, and make a hole in the centre of the pie with a sharp knife.

  12. Place in the oven to bake for 1½ hours. Remove and cool for 30 minutes.

  13. Increase the oven temperature to 190C/380F/Gas 5. Carefully remove the pie from the mould and place the pie onto a baking tray. Brush again with beaten egg, covering all sides. Return the pie to the oven for a further 20 minutes. Remove and cool.

  14. For the jelly, soak the gelatine leaf in a bowl of cold water until softened. Place the chicken stock, bay leaf and peppercorns into a saucepan and bring to a simmer.

  15. Add the gelatine leaf and simmer a little more until the gelatine has dissolved. Strain into a jug and then pour into the pie through the hole on the top, slowly, allowing the liquid to seep into the pie all the way through.

  16. Place in the fridge for at least one hour to cool completely.

  17. For the red onion marmalade, heat a frying pan until hot, add the butter, chopped red onion and garlic and fry for 3-4 minutes, until just soft.

  18. Add the sugar and thyme, and cook slowly over a low heat for 20 minutes, or until soft and caramelised. Turn the heat up and add the red wine and red wine vinegar. Bring to a simmer and cook for a further 10-15 minutes until the liquid has evaporated. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Leave to cool.

  19. To serve, slice the pie and serve it with the onion marmalade.

James Martin recipes from Saturday Kitchen Best Bites

30 mins to 1 hour preparation time

1 to 2 hours cooking time

Serves 6-8

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