|Stewed Pheasant, Dressing with Stewed Mushroom Gravy and Delicata Squash, a hearty meal|
Once home, he and I cleaned them and put them to brine overnight in a mixture of:
|Large mushroom chunks in the gravy|
Marinade for Three Pheasants8 quarts of water
3/4 cup Kosher salt
1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon juniper berries
Bring all ingredients to boil and then cool before pouring over cleaned pheasants. If using a zip-top bag to hold the birds, you might be able to halve this recipe for the marinade.
NOTES: The use of juniper berries is not absolutely essential, but if you can find them, they make game meats taste wonderful.
|Delicata Squash, baked|
A note on the fats used in this recipe: It is difficult to exactly pinpoint the amount of fat to use, as much will depend on how meaty or fatty the bacon is. The bacon I used was extremely meaty and rendered so little fat that I had to add in oil and butter to accommodate frying the onions, garlic and then the pheasant. No matter how much extra fat or oil you add, it will make little difference to the moisture of the bird. Pheasant is naturally very lean. If it was to be roasted, wrapping the pieces in strips of bacon might help a bit in the overall moistness of the meat, but when the meat is in a stew, that has no real effect. The fat that floated on the surface of the stew attests to the fact that it was not absorbed by the meat!
Pheasant and Mushroom Stewserves 3 - 4
|Dinner of Pheasant, dressing, gravy and Delicata squash|
1/2 ounce dried chanterelle mushrooms
4 cups boiling water
6 slices thick-sliced bacon, in 1/4-inch slices
1 large onion, chopped
4 large cloves garlic, rough chopped
1 - 2 tablespoons oil or butter, as needed for frying
1 1/2 pheasants, cleaned and cut into quarters
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
6 juniper berries
1 large sprig fresh thyme
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 - 3 tablespoons Worcestershire for Chicken (or regular Worcestershire)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
Pour the boiling water over the dried mushrooms, cover and set aside for 20 or 30 minutes, while preparing the other ingredients.
Dry the pheasant pieces thoroughly with paper toweling. Combine the flour, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and the first teaspoon of paprika in a large plate. Dredge the pheasant pieces in this flour mixture and set aside, reserving the flour.
Have ready a large stew pot. In a large skillet, over medium heat, brown the bacon. Once browned, remove with a slotted spoon to the stew pot. Add the onions to the grease in the pan, and add more oil or butter if needed. Once softened, add the garlic for 2 - 3 minutes, until fragrant. Remove the onion and garlic to the stew pot. Use 2 - 3 tablespoons of the reserved dredging flour and sprinkle it over the bacon, onions and garlic. Stir in well until it disappears.
|Stew gravy with mushrooms - no sour cream!|
Sour cream may be added to the stew gravy if desired. I meant to do this but completely forgot in my hurry to get the food on the table for such a late dinner. No one missed the sour cream. The stew was absolutely perfect. The stew could be served over rice, or noodles. I made a dressing with the precise intent to use with this dish. Another alternative is to add potatoes to the stew to cook.
My passion is to teach people how to create a harmony of flavors with their cooking, and help pass along my love and joy of food, both simple and exotic, plain or fancy. I continue my journey in ethnic and domestic cuisines, trying new things weekly. I would love to hear from you, to help me continue my journey to explore diverse culinary experiences and hopefully to start you on a journey of your own. Join me at A Harmony of Flavors Website and Marketplace, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.