Cider Braised Pheasant with Dried Figs and Pancetta

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The Recipe

Try this pheasant braised in cider for an autumnal feast this evening, in a warming dish that celebrates the best of delicious, wild and seasonal game.  As part of Cowdray Game Week (8th – 14th November), enjoy a wide variety of wild game including pheasant, partridge, woodcock, rabbit and ​Cowdray venison with 20% of all cuts and four dressed birds for £10  from the Butchery during the the week.


  • 2 pheasants
  • 150g pancetta lardons
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 4 sprigs of thyme
  • 4 parsnips peeled and chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 150g dried figs
  • 400ml cider
  • 50ml brandy
  • 50g butter


  1. Place a large heatproof casserole dish on a high heat with a little oil and add the onion, garlic, pancetta, bay leaf, thyme and parsnips.
  2. Fry this until it all becomes brown and starts to stick to the sides and bottom of the dish, deglaze the dish with a little of the cider
  3. Meanwhile, in a separate frying pan on a medium heat add the butter and seal off the pheasants until a rich golden brown all over
  4. When the pheasant are browned add the brandy and carefully flambé. Once this is done, add the pheasants and any juices to the casserole dish.
  5. Pour in the rest of the cider and add 200ml of water along with the figs to the casserole dish and bring up to a simmer.
  6. Whilst it is coming up to a good simmer preheat the oven to 160c fan.
  7. Once simmering, cover the dish with a lid or tin foil and cook for approximately 1 hr to 1hr 10 mins.
  8. Remove from the oven once ready and season well before serving
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