PUBLISHED: 12:19 19 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:07 28 November 2012
Cooking wood pigeon
As with most game, there are two ways of cooking woodpigeon: long and slow at a low temperature (braising) or fast, leaving it pink in the middle (pan frying or en croute). Woodpigeon is the most underrated underused meat in the UK – I rate my enjoyment of eating pigeon up there with grouse and roe deer.
This meal can be cooked really quickly and uses ingredients that you can buy cheaply at any local village shop, making it the perfect way to round off a day spent shooting pigeons.
• 500g Ready-rolled puff pastry
• 4 woodpigeon
• 250g mushrooms
• 75g butter
• 2 beaten eggs for glazing
• 2 small savoy cabbages
• 1tsp of wholegrain mustard
Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas mark 3. Take the whole pigeons, tear open the skin and cut the breasts off the birds
Heat the butter in a pan and leave it until it starts to change colour and smell nutty. Dice the mushrooms and add to the pan.
Cook the mushrooms about 7 minutes on a high heat – this will remove all the water. Place them on a plate to cool down.
Roll out the puff pastry until about 1⁄4in thick and cut into eight pieces, roughly 4x4in.
Place a small tablespoon full of mushrooms in the middle of a pastry square, put a pigeon breast on top, fold in and seal with beaten egg. Put the pigeon en croute in the oven for 15 minutes.
Slice up the cabbage and cook in boiling salted water for four minutes until soft but still crunchy. Add the wholegrain mustard and a knob of butter.