A classic combination featuring game. This winter dish utilises fantastic seasonal UK produce with partridge – a game bird with a stronger flavour than pheasant, that pairs well with hearty flavours.
Prep & cooking time: 2 hrs 15 mins
- 1 whole partridge with legs removed
- Red wine sauce
- 2 banana shallots finely sliced
- 1 star anise
- 200ml red wine
- 250ml reduced chicken stock
- 250ml reduced veal stock
- Partridge legs
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 sprigs of thyme
- Brown the partridge legs with some oil in a saucepan then remove and put to one side.
- Add the sliced shallots and star anise and caramelise the onions well. The anise reacts with the sulphur in the onions creating heterocyclic molecules these have notes of clove, cinnamon, chili, black pepper, thyme and oregano. Making a meat dish seem even meatier.
- Add the browned legs back to the pan and deglaze with the red wine. Reduce to a syrup and then add the stock with a bouquet garni of thyme and bay.
- Cook out for an hour reducing slowly. Then pass through muslin and return to the heat.
- Keep reducing the sauce skimming regularly until it coats the back of a spoon.
To cook the partridge
- Vacpac the partridge crown, not too tight, to maintain its shape.
- Cook the partridge in a water bath @ 56c for two hours.
Celeriac puree and fondant
- 1 celeriac peeled
- 250g unsalted butter
- Salt to taste
- Cut 3-4, 2cm rectangle pieces from the celeriac for the fondant
- Melt the butter in a pan add the celeriac pieces and cover with water, add a little ‘flavour magic’ smoked salt and then a cartouche.
- Simmer slowly till the celeriac is cooked through, remove from the pan and put to one side.
- While the fondants are cooking, slice the remaining celeriac on a mandolin and place in a thermo mix wit the rest of the butter.
- Set to a high heat and start the machine at ½ speed. Add about 200ml water and cook for 25 minutes, (you may need to add more water to keep the puree moving). Then turn up the speed for another five minutes, season and keep warm.
For the cabbage
- ¼ of a savoy cabbage julienne with the stalk and dark green leaves removed
- ¼ pkt of cooked chestnuts finely chopped
- Six strips of smoked pancetta brunoise, fried off till crispy.
- 50g unsalted butter
- Melt the butter in a pan and stir in the cabbage.
- Put a lid on or wrap the top in cling film and gently let it cook in its own steam shaking the pan regularly to avoid the cabbage from sticking.
- When the cabbage is cooked add the pancetta and chestnuts.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Remove the partridge from the bag, and roast the partridge skin quickly in clarified butter, the bird should be a golden roasted colour while the meat remains moist inside.
- Reheat the cabbage and fry the fondants on one side
- Arrange everything on the plate pour over the sauce and serve.