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Recipe: braised venison shanks with garlic.

If you've ever had the classic dish "40 clove chicken," this is a lot like it. It uses a lot of garlic, but the slow braising mellows it a lot, so no need to worry about garlic breath. It's meant to be done with a smallish, young animal, ideally an antelope or a doe.

Preheat the oven to 300[degrees] F. Coat the shanks in a little vegetable oil and salt them well. Heat the vegetable oil in a Dutch oven and brown the shanks on every side except the one with the "shin," where the bone shows clearly--if you brown this part, the shank is more likely to fall apart before you want it to. Remove the shanks as they brown and set aside.

While the shanks are browning, peel the garlic. This is the easiest way: Separate the cloves and put them in a metal bowl. Cover the bowl with one the same size and shake them vigorously for about 10 seconds. All the cloves will be peeled.

Put the garlic in the pot and cook until they begin to brown. Pour in the white wine and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Bring this to a boil and add the chicken stock, thyme, rosemary, and lemon zest. Bring to a simmer and add salt to taste. Put the shanks back in the pot and arrange "shin" side up with the garlic all around them. Cover and cook in the oven until the meat wants to fall off the bone, anywhere from an hour to 21/2 hours.

To serve, pour some sauce over the shanks and garnish with the reserved garlic cloves and some rosemary. Serve this with mashed potatoes, polenta, or something else to soak up the sauce.

3 tablespoons vegetable
4 venison shanks
4 heads of garlic, peeled
3/4 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
Zest of a lemon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary, plus more for garnish
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Publication:Petersen's Hunting
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Dec 1, 2014
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