Pheasant Pot-Roast with Bacon & Cider

You may cook pheasant the way your mom or dad taught you years ago, but sometimes a change is what you need to reinvigorate your taste for wild game. Here’s a recipe from James Martin of BBC’s ‘Good Food’ that just might make you start salivating on your keyboard.

Measurements have been adjusted to US standards (Oh those pesky Europeans and their Metric System)


  • 1/2 stick butter (4 tablespoons)
  • 2 pheasants, cleaned
  • 4 ounces bacon
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 celery stick, chopped
  • 4 sage sprigs, leaves chopped
  • 2 eating apples, cored and cut into large chunks
  • 2 cups cider
  • 1 1/3rd cups chicken stock
  • 1 Savoy cabbage, finely shredded (You’re not limited to savoy here, use what you’ve got)
  • 1/3rd cup heavy cream
  • mashed potato, to serve (optional)


  1. Heat oven to 375F. Melt the butter in a large non-stick flameproof dish. Season the pheasants, add to the dish and brown on all sides. Remove from the dish and set aside.
  2. Add the bacon, onion, celery and sage to the dish and cook for 10 mins until the onion is soft and the bacon is crisp. Carefully pour off any excess fat.
  3. Return the pheasants to the dish and scatter over the apples. Pour over the cider and the chicken stock, bring to a simmer, cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 25 mins until the birds are cooked through.
  4. Remove the birds from the dish and keep warm. Return dish to the hob over a high heat. Let the liquid bubble until reduced by half, then add the cabbage, cover with a lid and cook for 3 mins. Add the cream, check the seasoning, and continue cooking for 1 min more. Serve the pheasant on top of the cabbage mixture with some mashed potato, if you like.