Pheasant with Chestnuts and Onions

Fagiano con Cipolle e Castagne

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Leaves from The Walnut Tree: Cooking of a Lifetime

Leaves from The Walnut Tree

By Ann Taruschio and Franco Taruschio

Published 1993

  • About


  • 2 hen pheasants
  • 60 g/2 oz butter
  • 200 g/7 oz pearl onions
  • 200 g/7 oz chestnuts, boiled and peeled
  • 15 g/½ oz flour
  • 600 ml/1 pt chicken stock
  • 30 g/1 oz redcurrant jelly
  • 3 strips orange peel and the juice of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley


    Portion the pheasants into quarters.

    Melt half the butter in a frying pan, and when it is foaming, add the pheasant portions and fry until golden all over. Transfer the pheasant portions to a casserole.

    Peel the pearl onions and fry them in 15 g/½ oz of butter until golden. Reserve.

    To the pan in which the onions were cooked, add the rest of the butter and the flour. Stir the flour into the butter and let it cook gently for 5 minutes until it is a golden colour. Add the stock and bring to the boil.

    Add the redcurrant jelly, the orange peel, orange juice and the wine vinegar to the stock. Mix the sauce with a balloon whisk to ensure there are no lumps. Pour the sauce over the pheasants.

    Add the bay leaf, cover the casserole and put in an oven set at 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Cook for 1 hour. Forty minutes into the cooking time add the onions.

    Remove the pheasant to a warm dish and season the pieces with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

    Reduce the sauce over a high heat for 5 minutes, and then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Toss the chestnuts in 15 g/½ oz of butter until golden and add to the sauce.

    Serve the pheasant with the sauce, onions and chestnuts poured over. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

    As an accompaniment, serve either chestnut tagliatelle or chestnut gnocchi tossed in melted butter.