Pheasants in Almond Batter

Serve Pheasants in Almond Batter with a hot tomato sauce for an unusual and tasty meal. It needs no accompaniment other than a tossed green salad and some smooth claret.

16 fl. oz. Fritter Batter I

2 oz. blanched almonds, very finely chopped sufficient vegetable oil for deep-frying 2 young pheasants, roasted, cut into 8 serving pieces and kept warm 10 fl. oz. m cups Coulis de

Tomatoes Provencale, hot

Pour the fritter batter into a medium-sized shallow mixing bowl and stir in the chopped almonds. Set aside.

Fill a deep-frying pan one-third full with the vegetable oil. Heat the oil over moderate heat until it reaches 375 °F on a deep-fat thermometer, or until a small cube of stale bread dropped into the oil turns golden in 40 seconds.

Dip two or three of the pheasant pieces in the almond batter, coating them thoroughly with the batter and shaking off any excess. Carefully lower the pieces into the hot oil and fry them for 3 to 4 minutes, or until they are crisp and golden brown on the outside.

With a slotted spoon, remove the pieces from the pan and drain them thoroughly on kitchen paper towels. Transfer the fried pheasant pieces to a warmed serving dish and keep them warm while you cook the remaining pieces in the same way.

Pour the hot tomato sauce into a warmed sauceboat and serve immediately, with the fried pheasants.

Pheasant and Chestnut Casserole

Pheasants cooked with orange, thyme, chestnuts and vegetables in a port-flavoured sauce, Pheasant and Chestnut Casserole makes a superb dinner party dish. Serve with creamed potatoes and glazed carrots.

Succulent Roast Pheasant with its traditional accompaniments.2 young pheasants

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons grated orange rind

1 teaspoon dried thyme

4 large streaky bacon slices

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoons vegetable oil medium-sized onion, finely chopped small garlic cloves, crushed

6 oz. button mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced

1 lb. chestnuts, blanched, peeled and skinned

8 fl. oz. chicken stock

2 tablespoons orange juice bay leaf

1 tablespoons port

1 tablespoon beurre manie

Rub the pheasants, inside and out, with the salt and pepper and set aside.

In a small saucer, combine the orange rind and thyme. Sprinkle the mixture inside the cavities of the pheasants. Lay two of the bacon slices over the breast of each pheasant. Truss the pheasants with string and set aside.

In a large frying-pan, melt the butter with the oil over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the pheasants and fry, turning frequently, for 6 to 8 minutes or until they are golden brown all over.

Remove the pheasants from the pan and place them in a large flameproof casserole. Set aside.

Add the onion and garlic to the frying-pan and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent but not brown. Add the mushrooms and chestnuts and fry, stirring frequently, for a further 5 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat. With a slotted spoon, remove the vegetables and chestnuts from the pan and arrange them around the pheasants in the casserole. Pour the chicken stock and orange juice into the casserole and add the bay leaf.

Set the casserole over moderate heat and bring the liquid to the boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low, cover the casserole and simmer for 1 hour or until the pheasants are cooked. To test if the pheasants are cooked, pierce one of the thighs with the point of a sharp knife. If the juices run clear, the pheasants are cooked.

Remove the casserole from the heat. Using tongs or two large spoons, lift the pheasants out of the casserole and transfer them to a large, warmed serving dish. Remove and discard the trussing string and bacon. Using a slotted spoon, remove the vegetables and chestnuts from the casserole and arrange them around the pheasants. Set aside and keep warm.

Pour the cooking juices in the casserole through a fine wire strainer held over a medium-sized saucepan. Discard the contents of the strainer. Stir the port into the saucepan and set the pan over moderate heat. Bring the sauce to the boil, stirring constantly. Stir in the beurre manie, a small piece at a time, until the sauce is thick and smooth.

Remove the pan from the heat. Pour the sauce over the pheasants and serve immediately.

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