Italian Venison Meatballs with Wild Mushroom Ragu. These Italian inspired venison meatballs are the perfect partner to this delicious wild mushroom ragu.
1 pack Silver Fern Farms Venison Ground
11⁄2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 egg, lightly beaten
20g dried porcini mushrooms
700g mixed mushrooms
1⁄2 cup olive oil
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 tbsp chopped thyme
1 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp tomato paste
1⁄4 cup brandy, or red or white wine
1⁄3 cup thickened cream
400g dried or fresh pappardelle pasta
1⁄2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese, and chopped parsley, to garnish
Begin by placing dried porcini into a large heatproof bowl. Pour over 2 cups of boiling water and allow to sit for 30 minutes or until mushrooms are softened. Drain, reserving the liquid. Coarsely chop mushrooms.
Meanwhile, to make the meatballs, combine Silver Fern Farms Venison Ground with breadcrumbs, garlic and egg. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Using clean hands, mix together and roll into 1 tablespoon-sized meatballs.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large deep frying pan over a medium heat. Cook meatballs for 3-4 minutes to brown. Remove from the pan. Wipe pan out with paper towel to clean. Add remaining oil to pan. Cook garlic, shallots and thyme for 3-4 minutes or until softened.
Add porcini and mixed mushrooms to pan. Increase heat to medium-high and cook for 8-10 minutes or until soft and golden. Sprinkle in flour, and toss to combine. Add tomato paste and brandy. Stir to combine. Add reserved mushroom soaking liquid
and meatballs. Bring to the boil, then reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes or until thickened and meatballs are cooked through.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Cook pasta according to packet instructions, or until al dente, then drain.
Stir cream into mushroom ragu, and cook for a further 3-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve mushroom ragu and meatballs over pasta. Garnish with parmesan cheese and parsley.