One of the things I love about the Hill Country is the affinity with my region, Tuscany, with regards to using venison and game meat in the recipes. Here is a venison version of the famous Bolognese sauce.
1 lb ground venison
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
Rosemary from 1 stalk, minced
1 bay leaf
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup dry red wine
12 oz crushed tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
3 cups of water
1 cup of whole milk
Combine extra virgin olive oil and butter in a large pot, over medium heat. Add celery, carrot and onion and sauté on low heat for about 15-20 minutes or until completely cooked. Season with salt and pepper.
Add ground venison and break it into small pieces, season with salt and pepper. Add minced fresh rosemary, 1 bay leaves and cook for about 15 minutes , over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Add red wine and turn the stove over high heat to let the alcohol fully dissipate.
Add crushed tomatoes and wait until the sauce starts simmering again. Adjust with salt and pepper, if needed.
Reduce to low heat to gently simmer. Cover the pot and cook the sauce for at least 2 hours (the longer, the better) stirring occasionally. Add water periodically throughout the cooking process.
Towards the end, add a cup of whole milk and stir.
Cook the fettuccine al dente, mix them with the sauce and serve immediately.
Serve the pasta with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano.