Wild Boar Ragout à la Provençale (cont'd)
A few days ahead we place the boar cubes in a marinade. To prepare the marinade pour red wine in a cooking pot and add the savory, thyme, onions, carrots, celery, salt and pepper. Bring it to a quick boil. Reduce heat to let it simmer over low heat for about 15 minutes. Remove pot and let it cool down. Put the cold marinade in a bowl and add the wild boar cubes. Cover the bowl with a plastic film and let the meat marinade for at least 2 days in the fridge.
Before you make the dish, bring the wild boar in its marinade to room temperature. Lift the wild boar from the marinade and pat it dry. Make sure you dry the meat well with a paper towel and remove any vegetable or spice remnants. Otherwise the meat will not brown. Set the marinade with vegetables and spices aside, we will use it later.
Heat olive oil and the diced bacon in a casserole. When bacon is crisp remove it and set aside. Add the wild boar meat to the casserole and sauté it until the meat is nicely brown all over. Add the bacon and the marinade with the vegetables and spices. Bring it to a rapid boil and skim the top with a spoon to remove any impurities. Reduce to low heat and let it cook for 3 - 4 hours or until the boar cubes are tender. It depends what type of wild boar you get, the older the longer the cooking time. Make sure not to overcook, you don't want the meat to dry out.
Before serving remove the bay leaf, check the seasoning and add the black olives (optional). In the Provence we like to serve wild boar ragout with pasta, such as gnocchi or pappardelle. Heritage of our many Italian immigrants who settled here in the 19th century. The rest of France prefers to serve this dish with boiled potatoes.