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Pheasant in Bacon Sauce

ingredients

serves 2
1 pheasant weighing 1.25 kg (2 1/2 lbs)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
4 thin rashers fat bacon
1/2 stick (2 oz) 50 g butter
2 oz (50 g) streaky bacon
1 carrot
150 g (15 oz) leeks
Bunch parsley
2 juniper berries
2 tbsp oil
5 peppercorns
2 cups (500 ml) (16 fl oz) water
125 ml (4 fl oz) 1/2 cup grape juice
3 tbsp dry sherry
4 oz (100 g) 1/2 cup soured cream

method

1. Preheat oven to 220°c(425°F) Gas Mark 7.

2. Wash and dry pheasant. Cut off wings and rub well inside with pepper and 1 tsp salt.

3. Cover breast with bacon rashers and tie in place.

4. Heat butter in roasting pan. Brown pheasant well all over, turn breast down and slide onto bottom oven shelf. Roast for 40 minutes.

5. Remove bacon 10 minutes before end of roasting time, turn pheasant over on back and brown breast.

6. To make the sauce, chop both remaining portions of bacon; scrape, wash and chop carrot; clean and split leeks lengthwise, then wash and slice.

7. Chop parsley and crush juniper berries.

8. Heat oil. Saute bacon, then pheasant wings and giblets as well. Add prepared vegetables, parsley, juniper berries, 1/2 tsp salt, peppercorns and water; boil for 20 minutes. Strain sauce through sieve.

9. Keep pheasant warm. Deglaze roasting pan with sauce, pour into saucepan, add sherry and grape juice and reduce to 1 cup (8 fl oz) 250 ml. Stir in soured cream.

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