Traditional Butchers & Purveyors of Fine Foods
Closed open today (Mon) 8am
Walsham le Willows, Suffolk IP31 3AZ
Telephone 01359 259225

Game birds

“In season.”: In season now or not subject to seasonal restrictions. Usually available fresh now.

Which wine with pheasant?

A fruity red like a Cru Beaujolais or an Italian Rotaliano. A good Bordeaux always goes well.

Shami Gill, Wattisfield Wines. Three doors from us. .

Ballontines:

All game birds suitable in a ballontine – multi‑bird (three birds of your choice) roasts made to order.


Our pheasant, partridge, wild duck and pigeon are all wild from the local Suffolk countryside – from within a ten mile radius of our shop. Our grouse is sourced from Scotland. And our quail and guinea fowl are farm reared.

Game birds, excluding pigeon, quail, and guinea fowl, are only available fresh within their permitted seasons (dates below). When out of their seasons or otherwise unavailable fresh, game birds are usually available frozen.

All game birds are hung to mature, and sold prepared and ready for the oven. Game has a stronger, richer than usual flavour.

Game birds are no more difficult to cook than chicken, turkey, or goose. Simple methods are usually the best: plain roasting for young tender birds (lean birds will need frequent basting, or should be larded with fatty bacon to keep tender), or grilling for the small young birds, and simple casserole cooking or pot roasting for those that are a bit older and tougher, also good for pies.

We can tell you the age and sex of the bird and provide useful cooking advice too.

Pheasant

In season at the moment (season ends 1st February 2018). Usually available fresh now.

Sourced locally (ten miles or less) from the wild. Hand plucked, hung in cold room to mature. Sometimes sold in pairs, a male and a female, known as a brace.

Like most game, has a stronger than usual flavour.

Cooking: Young birds, roast. Wrap in foil to keep bird moist. Older birds, stew. Hens are smaller and more tender and will serve three people. Cocks will serve four.

Boned and stuffed pheasant

Boned, apart from the drumstick and wing bones to retain the bird’s shape. Stuffed with a force meat stuffing made from pork, smoked bacon, red wine, garlic, fresh parsley, herbs, and mace. Perfect for roasting.

Partridge

In season at the moment (season ends 1st February 2018). Usually available fresh now.

Sourced locally (ten miles or less) from the wild. Hand plucked, hung in cold room to mature.

Cooking: young birds, roast (serve in their own cooking juices). Older birds, stew or braise. Partridges are often small – serves one person.

Wild duck

In season at the moment (season ends 31st January 2018). Usually available fresh now.

Much less fatty than reared duck. Has a more intense flavour. Sourced from the wild, locally (ten miles or less) – inland, which is preferable tastewise to ducks from the coast. Hand plucked, hung in cold room to mature.

Cooking: Superb for roasting. All domesticated duck cooking methods and most recipes may be applied to wild duck but, because wild duck is less fatty than reared duck, the addition of a little fat may be necessary.

Pigeon

Not subject to seasonal restrictions. Usually available fresh all the year round.

Pigeon is surprisingly tasty. Sourced locally (ten miles or less) from the wild. Hand plucked, hung in cold room to mature.

Cooking: Braise, or pigeon pie. One bird per person.

Quail

Not subject to seasonal restrictions. Usually available fresh all the year round.

Reared. Sourced via Smithfield Market, London.

Cooking: A small bird so one bird per person for a starter, or two birds per person for a main course. Grill or roast.

Guinea fowl

Not subject to seasonal restrictions. Usually available fresh all the year round.

Reared. Sourced via Smithfield Market, London.

Its flesh is tender and slightly dry resembling pheasant. The flavour isn’t especially game-like; more chicken-like.

One bird serves two people.

Suitable for roasting, braising, and casseroles.

Grouse

In season at the moment (season ends 31st January 2018). Usually available fresh now.

Rich flavour.

Cooking: Young birds, roast or grill. Older, casserole. One bird provides one good single portion.


Discounts on orders made in advance (for collection)

  • 10% off orders over £100
  • 9% off over £90

  • 5% off orders over £50

Telephone 01359 259225 (we’re currently closed opening hours), or contact us.


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