At this time of year I always like to cook a little game. I have some reservations with the shooting traditions in this country, partly from having to cook the shooters breakfasts many years ago!
But I like to make use of the meat, to make sure their deaths weren’t in vain!
This to me, is a lovely wintery supper very much inspired from the north of Spain, something I picture being eaten in the mountains.
You will need for 2;
1 or 2 pheasants depending on how hungry you are (this want to be crowned. We don’t want the legs for this dish so remove them and save them for another day
half a red cabbage – cut as thinly as you can with the stalk removed.
about 60-80g of diced cured chorizo
glug or red wine
splash of apple balsamic vinegar
sprinkling of sugar (brown if you have it)
a few spices, i used cumin, coriander and cinnamon
a handful of raisins
This is a lovely simple dish, and really easy to put together. Firstly, in a saucepan you make the red cabbage. Start with hot oil, with the chorizo and spices and once the oil is released in the chorizo add the remaining ingredients. Cover with a lid and cook for an hour or so. As long as you keep it moist you can cook it as long as you like depending on how much bite you like in the cabbage. I like mine super soft, so tend to cook it even longer!
About half hour before you think your cabbage will be ready crank your oven to about 180 oc and have a frying pan on the flame. Add a touch of oil and fry your pheasant skin side down, you are looking to get colour on all sides of the bird, once you have done this, add a knob of butter and get it in the oven for 10 minutes.
So, cooking game birds isn’t easy, but you don’t want to overcook it but also don’t want to eat it too rare. If you have a thermometer, that would make it easier. You need to get the breast temperature near the bone to 60oc. If you don’t have one, then insert a small knife in and feel its temperature, if you press it on your lip, it should just start to hurt. You then want to let it rest in the pan for about 5 minutes whilst you plate your cabbage. This will make the meat more tender and let any juices mingle in the pan with the butter for your sauce!
So, now carve the breast meat from the bone (I’m hoping to make a video demonstrating this soon, its a great skill because do it badly and you loose so much meat), and serve with your cabbage and the pan sauce. You could of course have this with some potatoes or root veg, i liked it simple as a late supper.
Happy new year from blog de menthe