british game week, roast pheasant with bacon, how to cook game

British Game Week 2017 – How to cook game

British Game Week is the perfect excuse to make the most of everything that we love about British Game. It’s the perfect way of introducing the different types of meat to new people, or just reminding everyone else what a great alternative to everyday meat game can be. Whether that’s for a special occasion, as part of your festive menu or a healthy alternative for a mid-week meal.

Although game is much richer in flavour and texture than other meats, you may be surprised to know that it is actually a very lean meat, low in fat and high in protein and vitamins. Game is wild and naturally free-ranging, which gives it the unique and distinctive flavour which also means it is naturally gluten free as the diet is based only on natural vegetation.

Traditionally, game is fresh and seasonal, however as it is growing in popularity it is now becoming more widely available all year round with plenty of frozen options available.

Here is a guide to cooking your game to perfection;

Venison can be substituted for beef in most recipes as a healthier alternative. When it comes to cooking venison, it’s important to bear in mind that whilst it is a leaner, healthier meat, the low fat content can sometimes result in dryness so be careful if you are frying your venison. Slow cooking is also great for venison, as well as quick roasting, and best served pink depending on your preference. Be careful not to over-marinate the meat either as you could lose the beautiful flavour of the meat itself. Venison sausages are also a great alternative for your mid-week bangers and mash or toad-in-the-hole.

Pheasant, like most birds, is best roasted but the length will depend on the age of the bird. Quick roasting is ideal for younger birds, whilst stewing or slow braising is best for more mature birds. To make the most of the rich gamey flavours be sure to baste the breast area generously and often whilst cooking and consider layering streaky bacon over the bird to ensure the meat stays the meat beautifully juicy and flavoursome.

Rabbit has a subtle, game flavour with a texture similar to free range chicken. Great roasted and slow cooked, but again, age dependent as the more mature the meat, the tougher it will be therefore better in stews and casseroles.  As with all game, the lower fat content means the meat is more prone to drying out.