Roast Pheasant with Prunes Recipe

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Roast Pheasant with Prunes Recipe

(Rosemary and juniper berries inside the pheasants give the meat a savory

bitterness with a hint of gin, which is sweetened by the juicy prunes)

Ingredients:  Serves 4,  Oven: Preheated to 220°C

2 oven-ready pheasants, each about 1½ lb (680 g)

8-16 crushed juniper berries (to taste)

1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, or 1 level teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 bay leaves

16 ready-to-use stoned prunes

2 rashers unsmoked back bacon, fat removed

wooden cocktail sticks

¼ pint (150 ml) water

2 level teaspoons plain (all-purpose) flour

¼ pint (150 ml) chicken stock

1 level tablespoon redcurrant jelly

Sprigs of rosemary to garnish



Remove any feather tips and lead shot from the birds, then rinse them out and wipe them inside and out with kitchen paper.  Mix the juniper berries and rosemary leaves with the oil and spread inside the pheasants.  Push a bay leaf and 8 prunes inside each bird.  Lay a bay leaf and a rasher of bacon across the breast of each bird and fix with cocktail sticks.  Put the pheasants in a roasting tin and add the water to keep them moist.  Cook for an hour in the preheated oven until browned and tender, basting occasionally.  Lift the pheasants onto a warmed meat plate, cover and leave to rest.  Stir the flour into the cooking juices and gradually mix in the stock.  Bring to the boil, to work in the hardened juices from the bottom of the tin.  Stir in the redcurrant jelly and any juices from the meat plate.  Lower the heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes until slightly thickened.  Strain into a warmed serving jug.  Remove the cocktail sticks, bacon and bay leaves and give each diner some slices of breast and a leg, some of the prunes and a spoonful or two of sauce; hand round the rest of the sauce separately.  Garnish with the rosemary and leave the diners to remove the pheasant skin for themselves.  A purée of root vegetables and roast potatoes are well-flavored enough to match the robust taste of the pheasant.


Nutrient Value Per Serving:

510 calories

20 g total fat (6 g saturated fat)

24 g carbohydrates

3 g added sugar

3 g fiber

405 mg sodium


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