The below recipe is from José Souto‘s new book Feathers – The Game Larder
- 1 pheasant breast
- 2 wood pigeon breasts
- 1 whole mallard duck
- 150g Cumberland (i.e. herby) sausagemeat
- Remove the skin and inner fillets from both the pheasant and the pigeon breasts.
- Remove the wishbone from the duck (see here or page 78 in the book). Starting from the backbone, skin the duck completely so that you remove the skin as a whole piece (see here or page 80). Remove the duck breasts from the skinned duck carcase.
- Place one of the duck breasts in the middle of the skin and season.
- Take 50g of the sausagemeat and lay in between two pieces of cling film, roll out flat with a rolling pin to the same size as the duck breast then remove from the cling film and place the sausagemeat onto the duck breast. On top of the sausagemeat, place a pheasant breast and season.
- Take another 50g of the sausagemeat, roll out and place onto the pheasant breast.
- Finally place the pigeon breasts onto the sausagemeat.
- Wrap the duck skin around the breasts and sausagemeat, overlapping the skin where it meets by 2cm so that the breasts and sausagemeat are encased in the skin, and season.
- Using some butchers string, tie three times: once in the middle and then once either side of that, not too tight or the sausagemeat will be pushed out during cooking.
- Wrap the parcel firmly in cling film leaving a bit of cling film on each end so this can be tied in a knot.
- Go around the bird 10 times with the cling film.
- Twist the ends and tie the knots as tightly as possible at each end to look like a Christmas cracker.
- Boil some salted water in a pan and drop the parcel into the water and allow to simmer for 20 mins.
- Remove from water, cut one end of the cling film with some scissors, place at an angle and allow any liquid to drain out for 5–10 mins. This will create a vacuum and will pull the joint together. Remove the three-bird parcel from the cling film and pat dry.
- Lay the parcel in a cold frying pan and as it gets hot, the duck fat will render down and begin to colour the skin.
- Turn the joint around frequently so that it colours all the way around and allows the skin to render the fat out and crisp it up, then rest the parcel on the side where the skin overlaps and place in the oven at 180 °C for 15 mins, basting every now and then.
- Remove from oven and allow to rest somewhere warm for 10 mins but do not cover.
- Remove the string.
- Slice the ends off and cut into six or eight slices. Allow two slices for each portion and serve with a game jus or gravy.
If you enjoyed this recipe and information from Feathers, there are 55 modern, international recipes from master game chef José Souto in the book. It is part of The Game Larder Series, along with companion title, Venison – The Game Larder. The author imparts the beauty of game in the field, with the best advice in practical butchery, and innovative culinary creation.
The book is available to buy (RRP: $79.99) via Nationwide Book Distributors