woodcock, snipe and Game hot pot

Country Homes & Interiors - - GOOD TIMES, GOOD FOOD -

There is a bit of plan­ning in this dish, as it’s best to mar­i­nate 24 hours be­fore cook­ing, but it’s worth it.

SERVES 4

500g bone­less veni­son, cut into bite-sized pieces 200g skin­less pheas­ant breast meat, diced

100g skin­less woodcock breasts, finely chopped 100g skin­less snipe breasts, finely chopped

150g plain flour

Sea salt and freshly cracked black pep­per

Olive oil

100g smoked lar­dons

200g cele­riac, peeled and chopped

2 car­rots, peeled and chopped

2 onions, chopped

2 gar­lic cloves, plus 1 ex­tra, halved

1 tbsp fresh rose­mary and thyme, chopped and mixed

375ml dry red wine

400ml game stock

6 black pep­per­corns, lightly crushed

25g but­ter, soft­ened

750g waxy pota­toes

25g clar­i­fied but­ter, melted

For the mari­nade

450ml full-bod­ied red wine 3 ju­niper berries, lightly crushed 1 bou­quet garni

1 car­rot, peeled and chopped 1 gar­lic clove, sliced

1 onion, chopped

1 Place the game in a bowl. Pour in the red wine for the mari­nade, then add the re­main­ing mari­nade in­gre­di­ents and mix. Cover with cling­film and chill for up to 24 hours.

2 The next day, drain the meat and dis­card the mari­nade in­gre­di­ents.

3 Pre­pare the flour and meat fol­low­ing steps 1 and 2 of the grouse recipe on page 142, then drain on kitchen pa­per and set aside.

4 Pour off the oil in the casse­role dish, return to the heat with a splash of fresh oil. When hot, add the lar­dons and sauté un­til coloured. Add the cele­riac, car­rots, onions, gar­lic and rose­mary and thyme with a pinch of salt, and sauté for 3-4 min­utes un­til soft­ened.

4 return the game to the casse­role. Add the red wine, stir­ring to deglaze, and boil un­til re­duced by half. Stir in the stock and pep­per­corns. return the liq­uid to the boil, then re­duce heat to low, cover the casse­role and leave to sim­mer for 1½ hours.

5 When the game has al­most fin­ished sim­mer­ing, pre­heat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/gas 5 and lightly but­ter the in­side of a 2L oven­proof dish and rub with the cut gar­lic. Peel and thinly slice the pota­toes.

6 Put the game mix­ture in the serv­ing dish, then top with the po­tato, brush with clar­i­fied but­ter, then cover with foil, shiny side down. Bake for 1½ hours.

7 In­crease the tem­per­a­ture to 220°C/fan 200°C/gas 7 and take off the foil, brush­ing with clar­i­fied but­ter again. Con­tinue bak­ing for 15 min­utes, or un­til the pota­toes are golden brown. Set aside to rest, cov­ered with kitchen foil, for 10 min­utes be­fore serv­ing.

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