Wintertime in Colorado calls for a savory elk stew dinner. One of the best things about a successful hunt is enjoying delicious meals for several months. Each time I thaw a package of elk meat I’m reminded of the hunt itself, the work it took to get to place my tag on an animal, the work of dressing it and packing it out, then packaging it for the freezer.
All of the work that goes into the hunt makes it that much more delicious when I cook it up and put it on the table. Any good hunter knows that the best tasting elk meat begins with a well-placed shot, which starts with training months before the hunt. Once the shot’s landed and the animal is down the care of the meat in the field makes all the difference.
I’m proud to say that the rutting-bugling bull that I arrowed last September is tasty in many recipes. Here’s a yummy one I whipped up today.
Savory Elk Stew
Start to finish 1 hour, 15 minutes
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound elk meat, cubed (Substitute venison, beef, or other red meat.)
5 potatoes, peeled and cubed (If you like peels, leave them on.)
2 carrots, chopped
1 small butternut squash, peeled, cleaned, and chopped
1 small white onion, sliced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 cups beef broth
1 tablespoon Worcestershire
1/4 teaspoon Rosemary spice
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (optional)
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Turn your Instant Pot, or other multipurpose electric pressure cooker, to the Sauté or brown function. Add the butter and let it melt, then add the cubbed elk meat. Stir the elk meat until all sides are browned. Add the remaining ingredients to the pot. Place the lid on and turn it to the locking position. Make sure the vent/valve is closed. Turn the pot’s setting to the stew function and cook for 45 minutes. Follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions for releasing the pressure on the pot before opening the lid.
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