Carne Guisada, a thick, meaty gravy with chunks of tender, flavorful venison, has long been one of my favorite uses for round steaks from deer, elk, and antelope. The long, slow simmer breaks down the fibers of the tougher cuts and creates a spicy, tender filling for warm flour tortillas. For years I’ve used a recipe I adapted from the NRA Members’ Wild Game Cookbook, but recently I found myself with a thick cut of moose and a bunch of fresh roasted green chiles and decided to create my own Carne Guisada, which I’m sharing with you here.
1-2 lbs. venison round, cut into cubes
Flour for dusting
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. chile powder
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 medium onion, diced
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup green chiles
1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo
1 shot tequila
1 14.5 oz. can diced tomato
1 14.5 oz. can beef broth
Sprinkle a healthy pinch of salt over the cubes of venison round, then dust them with flour.
Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large, heavy pan or Dutch oven set over medium-high heat. When the oil starts to shimmer, brown the venison cubes, adding them in batches so as not to crowd the pan. Remove the venison to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
Add another two tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the onions. As the onions cook down, sprinkle in the cumin, chile powder, and dry mustard. Add the minced garlic cloves, green chiles, and chipotle peppers in adobo and stir.
Add the tequila, and as it sizzles down scrape the fond from the bottom of the pan to deglaze it. Return the venison to the pan, along with the diced tomatoes and beef broth. Cover and lower the heat to a slow simmer. Cook for 1 to 2 hours, or until the venison is tender and the sauces has cooked down to a thick gravy.
Serve with frijoles and warm tortillas.