Recipe courtesy of Chef Dilan Draper from Avec Bistro.
Photo by Ingrid Kuenzel
4 pheasant breasts with tenders
454 g pork caul fat
8 g fresh thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 medium shallot, chopped fine
1 oz brandy or cognac
45 g unsalted butter
- Sweat the thyme, garlic & shallots in a pan and deglaze with brandy. Add butter and let cool completely.
- Next, remove the tenders from the pheasant breast and grind. You can also use ground chicken, roughly 100-110 g will be sufficient. Mix the ground meat with your sweated aromatics and brandy.
- Butterfly open the pheasant breast carefully without creating any holes along the seam. Form little cylinders with ground mixture that reach from the pheasant bone to 3/4 the way down to the tip. They should not be too fat because the paillard will burst when cooking.
- Take the outside flap and roll tightly over the ground mixture inwards, tuck the bone in. Let the portions sit in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Lay out your caul fat evenly, nice and flat. Lay the pheasant breast down one at a time rolling just one layer of the fat tightly around the portion. Too much caul fat will result in a chewy unpalatable texture! Wrap each pheasant tightly in saran wrap and refrigerate for 2-4 hours.
- Preheat oven to 400º F. Heat an oiled pan on high heat, season and sear the pheasant on three sides to a nice golden brown. On the fourth side of searing, place directly in the oven for 12-15 minutes. A thermometer should read 142º F for perfect moisture and consistency. Let it rest for 4-5 minutes before slicing.
You will have 3 nice layers to present from the seared caul fat to the flesh, down to the ground meat. My favourite way to eat pheasant!