Roasted pheasant with pommes Anna, caramelised carrots and bread sauce


For the sloe jelly
For the pommes Anna
For the pheasant
For the bread sauce
For the game sauce
For the carrots
To serve

Preparation method

  1. For the sloe jelly, heat all of the jelly ingredients, except the agar-agar, in a pan over a low heat. Bring to the boil, remove the pan from the heat and sprinkle in the agar-agar, stirring until completely dissolved. Strain the mixture into a shallow container and chill in the fridge until firmly set.

  2. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4.

  3. For the pommes Anna, thinly slice the potatoes using a mandoline. Soak the slices in a bowl of cold water for 10 minutes, then drain well and pat dry on kitchen paper.

  4. Arrange a layer of potatoes in the bottom of a square baking dish, brush with the melted butter and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Repeat the process with the remaining potato, butter and seasoning. Bake the pommes Anna for about one hour, or until golden-brown and tender all the way through (test by inserting a knife through the layers; the knife should meet no resistance).

  5. For the pheasant, pat the pheasant dry inside and out, then tuck the herbs into the cavity. Rub the pheasant all over with the oil and butter, then wrap in the bacon rashers. Place the wrapped pheasant in a roasting tin and roast for 35-40 minutes, or until the meat is tender but still slightly pink. Set aside to rest.

  6. For the bread sauce, place the bay leaves and onion in a jug with the milk and set aside to infuse.

  7. Meanwhile, for the game sauce, heat the olive oil and 25g/1oz of the butter in a pan and fry the shallots for 10 minutes, or until softened. Add the mushrooms and cook for a further 4-5 minutes. Stir in the stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the volume of the liquid has reduced by half. Add the port and cognac and cook for a few minutes until the sauce has reduced again slightly. Whisk the butter into the sauce, a little at a time, until the sauce is smooth and glossy.

  8. For the carrots, place the carrots into a pan along with the sugar, stock and butter. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until nearly all of the liquid has evaporated and the carrots are tender and glazed.

  9. For the bread sauce, remove the bay leaves and onion from the milk, pour the milk into a heavy-based pan and bring to the boil. Scatter in the breadcrumbs, stirring until the mixture comes back to the boil. Remove from the heat and season with salt, freshly ground white pepper and mace. Add the knob of butter, but don't stir until you're just about ready to serve.

  10. To serve, carve the pheasant breasts off the bird (the carcass can be reserved for making stock in another recipe). Divide the pommes Anna between serving plates and arrange the pheasant breast and carrots alongside. Cut out squares of the sloe jelly and arrange on the other side of the plate with a spoonful of quince jelly. Spoon over the bread sauce and game sauce and garnish with fresh parsley.

Over 2 hours preparation time

1 to 2 hours cooking time

Serves 2

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