If you follow my cooking regularly then you may recall just before christmas I was eating quite a bit of Game, as it is in Season, well, I still am! Although we don’t have much longer left of the game season, until early February if Im not mistaken?
So, one Sunday, there was a dish that I cooked that absolutely blew myself and my Fiancé away and the great thing about it is that there were hardly any ingredients or cooking to it; Just great flavours. Also, there were no herbs in this which I always cook with, so that amazed me.
Anyway, We had been given two Lovely Partridges and two Pheasants from my Father who lives up in Yorkshire. I decided to Pot roast the Partridges this particular Sunday as being a Chef I know that being a small bird it can easily dry out, so occasionally I prefer to pot roast Game and of course when one is cooking on a Sunday afternoon, there is more time to sip at a lovely Red wine and read the 17 supplements of the Sunday Paper.
I had some Perry knocking about in the pantry so instead of Wine I thought this would make a lighter touch, maybe add some pears also but in the end I didn’t need to even add the fruit it was that flavoursome and so quick for a Sunday Lunch/Dinner. However the perry added a really nice Flavour.
If you are a meat eater and you aren’t sure about Game, please try cooking Partridge first as its lighter than Pheasant. It is a great little, versatile Bird.
This recipe is a keeper for myself and my family now and I hope this one will travel through our generations. It was one of those dinners that you just sat back and smiled for about an hour after! Oh and I just had to call my Father to tell him how nice they were.
It has also received a nickname that we find rather quirky, called “All the P’s” .
Which I can see my Partner shouting one Sunday morning, “What’s for dinner darling?” …”Oh All the P’s today”… “Brilliant!”
Pot Roast Partridge with Parsnips, Perry and Pearl Barley:
(“All the P’s”)
(We did one Partridge per person but there were some left for sandwiches the next day)
– 2 Oven ready Partridges
– 1 Tbsp of plain Flour to dust the Birds
– 1 Tbsp Rapeseed oil
– Couple of Knobs of Unsalted Butter
– 50g Pearl Barley
– 250ml of Perry (Pear Cider) You may not need it all as season to taste
– 1 Large leek sliced
– 2 medium sized Carrots chopped fairly chunky
– 1 Onion diced
– Homemade chicken stock or 1 gel pot of chicken stock to roughly 800ml water ( depending how big your partridges are)
– 1 large parsnip chopped the same size as your carrots
– Cracked Black Pepper to taste
* I served my dish with Creamy Mashed Potatoes and Spring Cabbage.
* Cook the Pearl Barley first in a separate pan with a bit of chicken stock to packet instructions. When Halfway through, add Carrots, then after 5 minutes the Parsnips. Less washing up all in one pan and guaranteed not to overcook the Partridge this way.
* Preheat Oven to 180c-190c
* Dust the Partridges in flour, add rapeseed oil and a knob of butter to a Casserole/heavy bottomed pan and place Partridges in, searing off (Browning) each side for a minute or two.
* Take the Birds out and place onto a plate. Add onions to the hot pan, cook for a couple of minutes. Add 250 ml of Perry and stock so when the Partridges are placed back in, it just covers them.
* Place into the oven with pre cooked veg from earlier, adding the leeks. Put a lid on and cook for 20-30 minutes. Any more than this will dry the bird out.
* After 20 minutes, check that the partridges are cooked thoroughly, cover over juices.
* Season to taste as you may not need salt, just the cracked black pepper.
* And Serve…
This recipe was great served with creamy buttery mash and some Spring cabbage as the thick juices just tumble over.