Pheasant and Chestnut Soup

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A degree of sweetness compliments gamey flavours. Even a few unsweetened chestnuts will give this to the soup. For this recipe you could use roasted shelled fresh chestnuts or those from a can. The quantity given here will provide four people with lunch or six with a substantial starter.

Ingredients

  • 1 pheasant
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • a small knob of fresh ginger
  • a little oil or butter, for frying
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 1.5 litres ( pints/ cup) chicken stock
  • 25g (1 oz/¼ cup) cooked chestnuts
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon double (heavy) cream
  • a few coriander (cilantro) or flat-leaf parsley leaves, to garnish
  • salt and pepper

Method

Take the pheasant meat off the bones. Peel and chop the carrot, onion, garlic and ginger and fry in a little oil or butter with the leg meat from the pheasant until the mixture starts to brown.

Add the spices and continue frying for a few moments. Add the stock and bring to the boil, then add the chestnuts and leave to simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the pieces of breast meat from the pheasant and continue simmering for about 20 minutes or until the pheasant is just done. Lift the breast from the soup and cut it into large dice.

Purée the soup in a blender, then pass through a sieve. Return the soup to the pan and reheat. Add the diced pheasant breast, then the lemon juice and cream. Season to taste, garnish with the coriander or parsley leaves and serve.

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