Deer neck daube
4-5 lbs. venison neck, sliced into 2-inch tall pieces
2 T salt
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 lb. slab bacon, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 large head of fennel, cut into 16 wedges
4 roma tomatoes, quartered and seeded
1 small orange, peel on, cut into thin slices
4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
16 small Yukon potatoes, peeled
4 small carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small onion, halved and cut into thick slices
4 celery stalks, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup taggiasche or other small olives, pitted
1 bottle (750ml) Pinot Noir or similar red wine
1 sachet (1 cinnamon stick, 2 tsp. each fennel seed, black peppercorns, and coriander seed wrapped in cheesecloth and tied with butcher’s twine)
1 bouquet garni (3 sprigs basil, 1 bay leaf, 2 sprigs thyme, and 2 sprigs rosemary, tied with butcher’s twine)
2 TB olive oil
1-2 cups chicken stock
The day before serving, season venison and bacon on all sides with salt and red pepper flakes. Place venison and the bacon on the bottom of a large mixing bowl or container and cover with the vegetables. Add wine followed by sachet and bouquet garni, being sure to submerge them. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 400°F and place a rack and dutch oven on a sheet pan in the center. Remove the neck pieces from the marinade and pat dry, reserving all of the marinade components. Add 2 TB olive oil to the heated dutch oven and add the venison pieces. Season with salt and pepper and return to the oven to brown. Once browned on all sides, add the remainder of the marinade ingredients and enough chicken stock to cover the meat. Place a lid on dutch oven and return to the oven for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, reduce temperature to 275°F and bake for an additional 2½ hours. Remove from the oven to rest at least 15 minutes before serving.