Wednesday, 5 February 2014


You know how sandwiches get superbly crispy and evenly golden when cooked in a panini press? Same goes for pheasant breasts healthy food recipes when cooked in a hot skillet under a brick. The skin gets deliciously crispy, while the meat cooks quickly without drying out. This pheasant recipes dish is a wonderful alternative to a traditional English roast.


4 (8-ounce) pheasant breasts
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces bacon, diced
8 ounces fresh or frozen gnocchi
1 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
20 cherry tom atoes
8 dried black mission figs, halved
1 cup roughly chopped chanterelles (about 2 ounces)
1-1/2 cups chicken stock
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1/4 cup unsalted butter


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wrap a brick in foil. Season pheasant breasts with salt and pepper.

Set a large cast iron Dutch oven or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until crispy. Use a slotted spoon to transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate, leaving the drippings behind.

Set the pheasant breasts, skin-side down, in the drippings. Immediately set the foil-wrapped brick on top. Place pot or skillet in the oven and roast breasts for about 10 minutes, until they reach an internal temperature of 155 degrees. Turn breasts over and remove from heat.

While breasts cook, bring a large pot of water to a boil, season with salt, and add the gnocchi. Cook according to the package directions.

Transfer breasts to a warm plate and tent with foil to keep warm. Set the cast-iron pot or skillet over medium heat and add chickpeas. Sauté for a minute, then add tomatoes, figs and mushrooms. Deglaze pot with stock and add thyme. Bring to a simmer, add the cooked gnocchi, butter and bacon. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Divide the gnocchi mixture among 4 dishes, place a pheasant breast on top and serve.

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