Well, we had another good ol’ Texas 40 degree temperature drop in less than 24 hours this week. That was fun…. But, it was perfect timing to try out this soup I’ve been playing with in my head.
So, if you didn’t read my post last week, you should (CLICK HERE) This will give you some info and links to more info on the freezer full of goodies in the front office. I’ve been looking through the different meats we have available to us and trying to come up with new recipes to change up my game, but to also give you some options to try in case some of these things are a little out of your comfort zone.
Last week we covered ground bison, but this week I tackled the Wild Boar. To be honest, I was a littlenervous about this one. My only exposure to wild boar was MANY years ago. I was in middle school and my ex-stepdad had killed one in Tennessee… He was not really a hunter… definitely not a chef… and it was disgusting.
I knew this experience would be different because of where this meat comes from, how it’s raised, killed, processed, etc… but I also had absolutely no idea how to cook it or what it’s true flavor profile was.
My first instinct was to treat it almost like sausage. I knew I wanted to make it into a cozy soup and I LOVE wild rice and mushrooms in soup. I originally was going to do this as a creamy based soup, but I tasted it before that step and I loved it so much as a broth based soup that… here we are.
I put this in my instructions below, but I’m going to emphasize, TASTE THE BROWNED MEAT BEFORE YOU PUT IT IN THE SOUP. I’m seriously so impressed. It doesn’t have any odd scent to it like some packaged meats can get and it has a lovely flavor. Give it a try. You’ll be glad you did and you’ll be more comfortable working it into different recipes.
1 Package Force of Nature Wild Boar
4-5 carrots -peeled and sliced
3-4 celery stalks – sliced
1 yellow onion – diced
3 cloves garlic- minced
4 large handfuls of kale – stems removed and torn into chunks
8 oz shitake mushrooms – thinly sliced
8 oz baby bella mushrooms – thinly sliced
1 cup (uncooked) wild rice
6-8 cups chicken broth
2 tsp dry rubbed sage
2 tsp dried rosemary
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp fresh thyme
salt & black pepper to taste
Get your wild rice going first because it’s going to take the longest. Either cook it according to the package, but use chicken broth in place of water. OR to follow what I did, cook your rice in an instant pot with 4 cups of chicken broth. Close the valve and set it to manual pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. Allow to naturally release for 10 minutes before releasing the valve. You WILL have broth left over – SAVE IT – it will go in the soup. The left over broth will have SO much amazing flavor and I believe that really added to my soup.
While your rice is working begin working on the meat and the soup itself. Heat a pan with a splash of olive oil. Add the ground wild boar, season with 1 tsp sage, 1 tsp rosemary, 1/2 tsp dried thyme, and a dash of salt and pepper. Cook, chopping up as you go, until brown. It’s quite lean and you shouldn’t have much fat to drain, but drain it if you prefer. Taste a little bit before you put it in the soup because IT’S DELICIOUS.
For the soup, heat a large pot (I used by cast iron dutch oven) to medium high heat with a splash of olive oil. Add the carrots, onions, and celery to the pot and saute until the onions & celery start to become translucent and the carrots begin to soften. Add the garlic, 1 tsp sage, 1 tsp rosemary, and cook for another 30-60 seconds or until fragrant.
Add the broth from the rice first, then add the rice, meat, and additional broth as needed to create the consistency you prefer. Bring the pot to a soft boil, reduce heat to low, add the kale and fresh thyme, cover with a lid and let simmer for 5-10 minutes or until kale is the desired consistency.
Taste the broth and adjust seasoning to your liking! I like a little more sage in mine, but these measurements are a good starting point.
Serve with a little garlic bread if you like.
Eat well friends!