Pork and partridge pie
You will need a loose 24cm round tart tin base to cook the pie.
partridges 3 bay leaves 3 onion 1 small red onions 2 carrots 3 medium celery 2 ribs olive oil 6 tbsp butter 20g smoked streaky bacon 8 rashers thyme 8 sprigs rosemary 2 busy sprigs garlic 2 cloves herby butcher’s sausages 8 ground allspice ½ tsp ground cinnamon ½ tsp ground mace ½ tsp puff pastry 500g eggs 2
For the sauce
clementine or small orange dried cranberries 50g dry marsala 150ml redcurrant jelly 4 tbsp Directions Put the partridges into a deep saucepan then pour over enough cold water to cover the birds. Bring to the boil with the bay leaves and the small onion. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover with a lid, and let the partridges cook for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, peel and finely dice the red onions, finely chop the carrots and cut the celery into small slices. Warm the olive oil and butter in a large, deep pan, stir in the red onion, carrot and celery and cook for 5 minutes until the onion is translucent. Roughly chop the smoked streaky bacon and stir into the vegetables.
Pull the leaves from the thyme sprigs and the needles from the rosemary. Chop the rosemary finely. Peel and finely crush the garlic then stir, together with the herbs, into the vegetables.
Remove the skins from the sausages then put the sausage meat into a large mixing bowl. Add the ground allspice, cinnamon and mace and season with salt and black pepper.
Remove the birds from their cooking liquor, let them cool briefly then remove the breast meat from the bones. It should come away easily. If not, slice it off the bones with a kitchen knife. Retain the remaining meat, bones and cooking liquor for stock.
Stir the softened onion and bacon mixture into the seasoned sausage meat, mixing thoroughly. I tend to use my hands here.
Cut off one third of the puff pastry and roll it to fit the base of a round 24cm tart tin with a little extra overlapping the edge. You can trim this later. Pile half the sausage and herb stuffing on top of the pastry, leaving 2cm or so of bare pastry around the edge. Smooth the surface level and place the 6 partridge breasts on top then add the remaining mixture, smoothing the top into a dome.
Roll out the second piece of puff pastry to fit plentifully over the meat. Beat the eggs in a small bowl then brush the edge of the bottom layer of pastry generously. Lower the second piece over the top then trim any overhanging pastry with a knife. Press firmly and pinch the edges to seal. Brush with beaten egg.
Use pastry trimmings to make leaves or holly berries with which to decorate your pie then press them into place. Brush with more beaten egg and rest the pie in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, set the oven at 200C/gas mark 6, placing a baking sheet in the oven to get hot. Carefully put the chilled pie, on its tart-tin base, on top of the hot baking sheet and bake for about 50 minutes till golden. Let the pie rest for 10 minutes before serving.
While the pie bakes, prepare the sauce. Cut the clementine or small orange in half and squeeze the juice into a saucepan. Remove and discard the flesh then cut the peel into very fine strips, as thin as you can. Add these to the juice, then stir in the dried cranberries, marsala and redcurrant jelly. Bring to the boil, immediately lower the heat then serve with the rested pie.
Above, Ogleshield sandwiches
Left, pork and partridge pie