Pheasant or Partridge – Pot Roasted With Port And Juniper Berries.


  • 2 pheasants or partridges.

  • 1 packet of pancetta cubes/lardons or bacon rind cut into small pieces.

  • 8 shallots peeled and left whole.

  • 3 sticks of celery sliced up into small pieces.

  • 2 wine glasses of port or red wine.

  • ½ teaspoon of sea salt.

  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds.

  • 1 dessert spoon of juniper berries.

  • 8 freshly ground black or red pepper corns.

  • A bunch of fresh thyme – stalks removed.

  • 4 oz of unsalted butter.


  1. Pre- heat oven to 180F – or using roasting oven for Aga.

  2. Grind in a pestle and mortar salt, peppercorns, cumin seeds and juniper berries until you have a fine powder.

  3. Clean birds, wash and pat dry.

  4. Heat 2oz of butter in a heavy casserole dish.

  5. Add bacon and cook until lightly brown.

  6. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and put to one side.

  7. Brown the birds on all sides in the butter and bacon fat, then remove birds.

  8. Add another 2oz of butter.

  9. Add shallots and celery maintain heat and cook until lightly browned – keep them moving.

  10. Add powder mixture and stir constantly.

  11. Add port/wine and bacon and keep stirring.

  12. Once bubbling, add birds on top adding more port/wine/or water if too dry (you need about 1 inch of liquid).

  13. Add thyme – put a tight lid on the pot and cook birds in the hot oven – 45 mins at 180F.

  14. Check birds half way and turn them over.

  15. At the end check juices from birds run clear.

  16. Slice breast meat/legs and serve with sauce poured over.

Good with carrot and potato puree, baked parsnips.

This recipe has been sent in by one of our customers – Dave Hewson, 2004.

You will need a heavy lid metal casserole/creuset.