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A delicious and easy-to-make smoked pheasant breast with bramble gin jus recipe, made using apple-wood cold-smoked pheasant breasts from The Smoked Game Company
The Game-to-Eat campaign, run by the Countryside Alliance, champions our beautiful British game as a healthy, sustainable source of wild meat. The website provides delicious recipes, tips on the best hanging and butchering techniques, and resources to help you get more game onto your dinner table, such as a game dealer finder. If you haven’t yet checked out the website, do so immediately. We guarantee it’ll make you hungry.
One company offering such pearls of wisdom on the Game-to-Eat website is The Smoked Game Company based in Jedburgh in the Scottish Borders. They sell mouth-watering hot- and cold-smoked game meat including pigeon, pheasant, grouse, mallard, partridge and venison, along with a marbled game terrine that looked so good it nearly had us licking our screens.
Andrew Millward, owner of The Smoked Game Company, developed his knowledge of the preparation and cooking of wild game after many years spent managing rural sporting enterprises in Europe and beyond.
Andrew’s fascination with smoking techniques meant he spent a long time experimenting with different native woods and various brining techniques in a quest to perfect and further enhance the beautiful flavours of locally sourced, quality game meat. Today, the company continues to use only the best produce from local estates and dealers.
The best businesses are usually those owned by someone with genuine passion for their products, and Andrew’s interest in smoked game goes beyond simply satisfying the needs of us game guzzlers.
As he explains: “The pleasure in working with wild game for me is that I know its origin, and know that it lived a free-range life.
“I developed a love for cooking and experimenting with game meat, such as slowly cooking venison or wild boar in red wine stews, while working in France. I always thought there must be other ways to add different flavours, to make game more attractive for a wider range of people, and that is how I got into smoking.
“My preference is the cold smoking process as it both tenderises the meat and keeps it moist. The brine followed by a long cold smoke also reduces the strong gamey flavour which can be overpowering. The brine half cures the meat so cooking time is halved, which also allows for quick and easy preparation.”
In light of this, here is Andrew’s simple yet delicious recipe for a tasty pheasant dinner, made with applewood cold-smoked pheasant breasts.
APPLEWOOD COLD-SMOKED PHEASANT BREAST WITH BRAMBLE GIN JUS - Preparation/cooking time: 20 mins
* New potatoes
* Applewood cold-smoked pheasant breasts from The Smoked Game Company
1. Start by putting the new potatoes and asparagus on to boil.
2. While they are cooking, put the blackberries in a pan with some gin and sugar and reduce to make the jus.
3. Pan-fry the pheasant for a few minutes on either side, then leave it to rest in a warm oven while you drain the potatoes and asparagus.
4. Half crush the new potatoes with butter and seasoning, slice the pheasant into strips and place on top of the crushed potatoes.
5. Lay the asparagus (or any seasonal veg) in a stack alongside, and drizzle the jus over the pheasant to finish.
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