A Partridge in a Pear tree

While Christmas is long past, this is one of my favourite game bird recipes; I prefer game birds (quail, grouse, pheasant, partridge) to chicken; generally, it has more flavour with less fussing. 

Seared partridge breast with blueberry-pear compote

Game bird breast is very lean, and does well finished in an oven after a rapid high-heat browning atop the stove.


4 partridge breasts (or other game bird breast)

½ cup dry red wine

1 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp Dijon mustard

2 sprigs rosemary

 for shortcut compote:

1 cup sugar reduced blueberry jam

½ cup canned pear slices (water packed)


 Place bird breasts skin side down in glass or plastic container.  In small bowl, whisk red wine, olive oil, mustard and plucked rosemary.  Coat the breasts with marinade mixture and refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight.

 In small saucepan over medium heat, bring to boil blueberry jam and pear slices, turn heat down and allow to simmer while preparing birds. Add a little water if jam is too thick.

 While compote is warming, heat a non stick skillet over high heat on stove.  Gently place the breasts in pan, turning once to brown both sides. Remove from heat and finish in a 350F oven  for 10-20 minutes, depending on size of bird.

Slice thinly and serve with compote. 
Side dish suggestions: sweet potato mash, barley risotto, oven roasted red potatoes; root vegetables




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