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Pheasant and Pork Pie

Now this is one with my guys at heart although I list a few vegetable additions as optional ingredients this one really is a meat lovers special at heart and at its core. It is meant to be a very meaty and hardy pie that is for the game bird fan in the crowd that wants to try their hand at another of the many wild bird species that are hunted and raised for food if you are not into hunting there are sources for these just do a search and you will find some sources for them online. Isn’t the internet wonderful so many things that use to be just for a few have opened up to the many?

Now I know these categories will need some filling out it is on my radar to do but I want to get as many possibilities out there first then start adding some depth to the different sub categories like pheasant and other game birds. Many of us have often wondered what many of these things taste like and I hope I am opening new avenues of discover to you in this expansion. This recipe optionally can be made like a more traditional pot pie if you like I list carrots and potatoes if you must but this one does best heavy on the meat side of it.

When making the filling you’re going to want to keep the sauce or gravy on the thicker side of things so it doesn’t get the dough to wet and just make a mess in the baking process. Not too stiff though as some of the liquid will bake off during cooking. This is inspired by the savory pie category on our British recipe site and if you like savory pies perhaps you would like to check out some of the traditional British savory pie recipes we have there find it at  TeatimeRecipes.co.uk. Sorry can’t help getting a plug in for one of my new sites it really is a nice start and so many people really miss understand British food it really is wonderful. Ok so back to pheasant if you have never tried it this is a nice place to start. It is a much simpler recipe then it looks like just wanted to make sure I gave you all the parts to the puzzle.

Game Pie with Pheasant and Guinness
Summary: Today I give you another in the game bird category to expand the coverage into another of the very popular wild birds that are used in recipes with a savory pie recipe that features pheasant and Guinness.
Author:
Cuisine: British
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 6
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Ingredients
For the Pie Crust:
  • 3 cups Gold Medal® All-purpose Flour
  • 6 tablespoons ice water
  • ¾ cups butter, unsalted and cubed
  • 6 tablespoons lard
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 beaten egg, for wash
For the Pie Filling:
  • 1½ pounds pheasant, cut into bite sized pieces
  • ½ pound pork loin, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cups carrots, chopped (optional)
  • 2 cups Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cubed (optional)
  • 1 whole Bay leaf
  • ¼ teaspoon thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 cup Guinness or other dark beer
  • ¼ flour
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • Olive oil for sautéing
Instructions
To Make the Pie Crust:
  1. With a flour sifter sift flour, and salt into a large glass bowl.
  2. Then with the use of a pastry cutter start adding the butter one tab and about a tablespoon of lard at a time until the flour forms pea sized dough balls.
  3. Next add about six tablespoons of the ice water and blend with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until the dough forms a large ball you may need to add more water only a little at a time to adjust it.
  4. Using your hands press the dough together but do not kneed it or over mix it.
  5. It shouldn't be sticky at this point and you should see lumps of butter and lard in the dough.
  6. Divide this into two dough balls about the same size and form them into disc shaped dough to prepare for rolling them out.
  7. Place them in the bowl and cover it with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator for at least thirty minutes.
To Make the Pie Filling:
  1. Place some oil in a skillet and turn the heat to medium high.
  2. Place the meat into skillet and sear all sides until browned just enough to seal the outside you are not looking to cook it through careful not to burn it work in batches if necessary to not over crowd the pan this is a quick process.
  3. Remove it and place the juice and meat into a stockpot and place a lid on it and turn it on low to keep it warm at this point.
  4. Lower the heat and add a dash more oil and place the onions in the pan and cook until soft stirring frequently. When most of the way done add the garlic toss a few times then add in the mushrooms the onions shouldn't be brown yet they well brown during the mushroom cooking time cook until onions and mushrooms are slightly browned.
  5. Transfer to the stockpot.
  6. Add the herbs to the stockpot and pour the broth and beer into the pot and bring this to a boil and then lower and simmer for fifteen minutes add the potatoes and carrots at the same time if using and cook until tender.
  7. In a measuring cup add the ¼ cup of flour and mix with enough cool water to form a thick paste or roux stir this into the stew or filling mix until all the flour is incorporated and simmer on low for 2 hours uncovered.
  8. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if need be.
  9. At the end of the cooking process it should have a thick gravy if not let it cook down for a bit more until as thick as you like.
To Make the Pheasant and Pork Pie:
  1. While this is finishing up move the chilled dough from the fridge to a floured surface and with a floured rolling pin roll it out to be about a ⅛ inch thick and big enough for a round deep dish pie plate.
  2. Rotating the dough a little every few rolls will help it stay round.
  3. When the dough is big enough to cover the pie plate and the edges transfer the first dough to the plate and gently form it to fit the contour of the pie plate it should have excess on the top edges hanging over.
  4. Using a large ladle spoon out the stew/filling into the pie shell until it is about a ¼ from the top (do not over fill or you will have a mess on our hands during baking).
  5. Take and roll the other dough ball out in the same manner and careful using a plate to transfer it to the top center it on the pie it should over hang the edges all around.
  6. Using your fingers crimp the edge into a pie edge shape and trim any excess dough with either a sharp paring knife or a set of kitchen shears.
  7. With a sharp paring knife cut about five slits around an inch long about a ⅓ of the way from the center to let steam out.
  8. Next take you egg mixture and using a pastry brush, brush the top of the dough with your egg wash.
  9. Place the pie into a preheated 375 degree F. oven onto top of a cookie sheet or shallow baking pan to catch any spills and bake it until the crust is a golden brown (everything in it is cooked so you are merely browning and cooking the crust this should take 40 to 50 minutes approximately.

Photo Description:

Ok we have all had savory pies often called pot pies before. Most of us have had the standard chicken, turkey, and beef but have you ever had a pot pie made with wild game before. If not this recipe is for you and it features not only pheasant but also a bit of pork to fill it out and give it a little textural variation. Now using pork with other meats is nothing new lots of recipes feature pork and others but most of us have never had it with pheasant let alone many of us have never had pheasant at all it really is a very nice game meat kind of a cross road in wild birds compared to say duck vs. chicken.
 

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