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Wild Boar with Juniper Berries Recipe - Cinghiale al Ginepro

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Juniper berries are traditionally used in cooking wild boar, hare, and other game. Should wild boar not be available where you live, this will work well with venison too. It will serve 4-6.

Prep Time: 12 hours

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 14 hours

Ingredients:

  • A leg of boar, weighing about 3 pounds (1.3 k)
  • 1 tablespoon juniper berries
  • A clove of garlic
  • 1/4 pound (100 g) lard, cut into lardons (1/4 inch (.5 cm) by 1/4 inch sticks)
  • A half a medium onion
  • A 2-inch (5 cm) piece of carrot
  • A 2-inch (5 cm) stalk of celery
  • A bunch of parsley
  • A bay leaf
  • Good red wine
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) melted butter
  • 1/3 cup ( 80 ml) broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

If you buy fresh boar, make sure that the animal was young. If it wasn't, marinate the meat for three days with a full bodied red wine. If you instead buy frozen meat, you will only need to thaw it.

Come cooking time, lardon the meat and preheat your oven to 430 F (215 C).

Grind together a clove of garlic, the juniper berries, a couple of grains of pepper, and a pinch of salt; rub the meat with this mixture and set it in a casserole. Sprinkle the meat with the melted butter, crumble the laurel leaf over it, and pop it into the oven.

Roast the meat for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, mince and sauté the onion, celery, parsley, and carrot in a tablespoon of butter, then stir in the broth and heat through. Add the herbs to the meat, sprinkle it with the wine, reduce the temperature to 390 F (195 C), and continue roasting for another 2 hours, turning the meat occasionally and basting it frequently with the drippings.

When the meat is done remove it to a serving platter. Reduce the drippings over a brisk flame, pour them over the meat, and serve. This goes well with roast potatoes.

Yield: 4-6 servings wild boar with juniper berries.
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