Nigel Slater’s recipe for a delicious and flavourful pot-roast partridge in time for your Christmas lunch preparation.
I am pot-roasting today’s birds with parsnips, juniper and smoked garlic.
banana shallots or small onions -3
parsnips, medium – 2
smoked garlic – 4 cloves
olive oil – 3 tablespoons
partridges – 2
chicken stock – 250ml
thyme -6 sprigs
juniper berries -10
double cream -125ml
Set the oven at 180°C/Gas 4. Peel the shallots and slice them in half lengthways. Peel the parsnips and cut them into chunks the length of a wine cork. Peel the garlic.
Warm the olive oil in a casserole for which you have a lid, lightly brown the shallots, parsnips and garlic in the hot oil, then remove. Season the birds with black pepper, then brown lightly in the oil. Remove the birds, pour in the stock and bring to the boil, scraping at any delicious debris in the pan and stirring it into the stock.
Return the birds and vegetables to the pot, tuck in the sprigs of thyme, and season with a little salt. Lightly crush the juniper berries and add them too. When everything returns to the boil, cover tightly with a lid and place in the oven for forty minutes. Remove the partridges, wrapping them in foil to keep them warm, then place the pot over a high heat and reduce the volume of liquid by half-it won’t thicken but will instead give you sweet, creamy juices. Stir in the cream, check the seasoning, then make sure all is thoroughly hot. Serve the birds in shallow bowls or deep plates, spooning over the vegetables and the juices. You will need a spoon as well as a knife and fork, and something with which to wipe your fingers.
Recipe taken from Nigel Slater’s The Christmas Chronicles.
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