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Spicy Spanish-Style Rillettes for Foodie Reads

The boys heading back to school is wonderful for my Foodie Reads 2016 Challenge because when they are busy with homework, I can sit down and read for myself! I love it.

Also, D has been logging his reading time for school and he has asked me to climb in bed and read with him. "You can read your own books, but can you just read next to me?" Sure.

On the Page...
I received this book - Buck, Buck, Moose by Hank Shaw* - last month after taking part in the author's kick starter campaign last year. Even though I don't hunt, fish, or garden, I've long been a fan of his website: Hunter Angler Gardener Cook

This cookbook is hefty, beautiful, vibrant, and informative. And it definitely made me wish I could get my hands on more wild game. Thankfully, in between hunting seasons and the generosity of friends and family who do hunt and fish, I order through D'Artangnan and Shaw even mentions them as a source. 

The cookbook is well organized and runs the reader through 'Deer Basics' - "A Deer is Not a Moose: Various Types of Venison"; skinning, gutting, and storing; 'Primal Cuts'; and all the way to 'Curing Venison and Making Sausage.'

Not being a hunter, I skimmed through portions and dove head-long into the recipes. 

Shaw's recipes are appealing in their breadth. He includes recipes from making stock to Chipotle Jerky and everything in between. I love the international bent. He has recipes from Italy to India and everywhere in between. Think Venison Bolognese, Swedish Meatballs, Massaman Curry, Chilindrón, and so much more.  

And while I may not be able to get my hands on venison as readily as I would like, I will be making his recipes with more common meats in the meantime. His recipes are well-written and easy to follow.

On the Plate...
I opted to share the Spicy Spanish-Style Rillettes I made from his book. I needed to adapt it as I wasn't using venison; I used pork. I also seared the meat before braising and swapped in leeks for the onions. It was a hit with my meat-loving crew and I can't wait to actually try it with venison.

Spicy Spanish-Style Rillettes
inspired by and adapted from Buck, Buck, Moose

  • 2 pounds pork (I used some bone-in pork roast)
  • 1 leek (trimmed and thinly sliced)
  • 1 to 2 T olive oil
  • water and/or chicken stock, enough to cover meat
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 T black peppercorns
  • freshly ground salt
  • 1 T sweet paprika
  • 1 T smoked paprika
  • 2 T hot sauce (I used Sriracha)
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
  • 2 to 3 T sherry
  • 1/4 C butter, room temperature
  • toast points for serving (I offered both regular and gluten-free baguette)

In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat olive oil. Saute the leeks until softened and beginning to turn translucent. Brown the meat on all side until a nice crust develops, approximately 1 to 2 minutes per side. Pour in the water and/or chicken stock until the meat is submerged. Add in the bay leaves and peppercorns. Bring the liquid to a boil, then drop the heat to a simmer. Simmer until the meat is falling off the bone. Mine took almost three hours.

Once the meat is cool enough to handle, remove it from the pot, leaving the bay leaves and peppercorns in the pot. Shred the meat and place it in a large mixing bowl. Add in the sweet paprika, smoked paprika, hot sauce, garlic, and sherry. Mix well. Blend in the butter until it's the texture of rough spread.

If you're serving immediately, place in a serving bowl with toast points. If you're serving later, pack the rillettes in to ramekins or small jars. For longer storage, melt some butter and pour a 1/4" layer over the top of the rillettes. Once the butter hardens, it will protect the rillette in the fridge for several weeks or you can freeze it for months.

*This blog currently has a partnership with in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to and search for the item of your choice.

Here's what everyone else is reading this month: September 2016 Foodie Reads Challenge.


  1. I am always looking for venison recipes. My freezer is nearly bare of venison at the moment but hopefully that will change come November.


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