Originally Posted by eastshores
Great looking dish Chris. That gravy looks outstanding. Did you add anything that would darken it that much?
Oh yes, you guessed right, and it's a classic;.... chocolate! Many times a very small chunk of chocolate is added to game stews, not so much for color but more to intensify the taste. Less is always more; if you can detect the chocolate taste, you added too much. I used a 75% cacao chocolate, no more than a small thumb-size chunk. In the old days, many times some blood of the game was added to stews to thicken and add to the flavor. Nowadays, chocolate is seen as a good substitute for that blood.
Anyway, this was a nice wintery combination of aromas and flavors. Of course, the dark wild boar meat, the searing and the red wine contributed to the color too.
Here's the ingredient list; onion, carrot, celery, chestnut mushrooms, red wine, red wine vinegar, veal stock, cloves, all-spice berries, juniper berries, thyme, laurel, chocolate.