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