Marcassin De Flandres

We’ve had boar for Christmas for the last umpteen years, but this year I tried a new recipe, patriotically named Marcassin De Flandres. The marinade is much the same as previously, but boiling rather than roasting struck me as risky. However, it worked, and even little U, often dubious about strange food, ate hers all up. The recipe is as follows:

1 chunk young wild boar for roasting (1-1.5 kilos)
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 0.5 cm cubes
1 rib celery, cut into 0.5 cm cubes
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed with the flat of a knife
bouquet garni: 3 springs parsley, 1 sprig thyme, and 1 large bay leaf tied together with kitchen string
6 juniper berries
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
400ml full-boiled red wine, such as Burgundy, Spanish Rioja, or Merlot
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
60 g unsalted butter
30 ml vegetable oil
100 ml Cognac
1 to 2 tablespoons redcurrant jam
1 to 2 teaspoons cornflour if needed

1 One to two days before you plan to serve, place the meat, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bouquet garni, juniper berries, and salt and pepper in a large glass or earthenware bowl. Pour in enough red wine to just cover the meat and add the vinegar. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate, the longer the better.
2 Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Heat half the butter and the oil in a large casserole dish (Dutch oven) over high heat until hot but not smoking. Reduce the heat to medium, add the meat, and brown on all sides, about 15 minutes. Off the heat, carefully flambe the roast with the Cognac. Add the marinade and all the ingredients in it. Simmer, partially covered, over low heat until the meat is tender, about 1 hour. Transfer the meat to a cutting board and let rest wrapped in foil before slicing.
3 Strain the cooking liquid through a sieve, reserving the vegetables. Discard the bouquet garni. Return the cooking liquid to the casserole and boil it, uncovered, over high heat to reduce by one third, 5 to 7 minutes.
4 Finish the sauce: Puree the vegetables and cooking liquid in a blender to a smooth consistency. You should have a thick, full-flavored sauce. Return it to the pan and reheat it. Add the redcurrant jam and whisk until well blended. Taste and adjust the seasoning. If the sauce seems thin to you, add a little bit of cornflour dissolved in 1 tablepsoon water or wine. Whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Do not boil the sauce beyond this point.
5 Slice the meat and arrange on a platter. Spoon some of the sauce over the sliced meat and pass the rest in a sauceboat.

Comment: for a slightly smaller chunk of meat, as we had, 45 minutes seems fine for the main phase of the cooking (I should really have used a meat thermometer), and the sauce did not need further thickening at the end. But it was very yummy.