Nigel Slater's Kitchen Diaries is both an entertaining read and a fabulous cookery book. Join me as I journey through the year cooking along with him...
Do buy the book from Amazon or your local book store. It's not just the recipes, its the gentle writing style and the importance of food provenance which strike a chord with me.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Week 4 - Herb Butter for Chops and Pheasant Pot Roast

The first outing from The Kitchen Diaries tonight is not so much a recipe as putting a few bits together. Excellent - my sort of cooking.

We're on p24, and Mr S is making a herb butter to put on grilled chops.  It involves mashing together butter, blue cheese, dijon mustard, cream and thyme, then making into pats (they turn out quite large) and putting in the fridge until you're ready for them.

I cooked pork chop in the oven on a bed of sliced potatoes and onions then slipped a pat on the top of the cooked pork chop and let it melt for a couple of minutes in the oven.

Very tasty and I could use any herbs I have around too.

On to the main event of the evening - I haven't eaten pheasant before so this was rather exciting.  I bought a brace of pheasant from the farmers' market a week or two back, and popped them in the freezer.

I got one out for this recipe on p25, which works on the principle of cooking the pheasant in it's own juices in a pot with a tight fitting lid.  I had the bright idea of using a roasting bag, into which I put the browned pheasant, celery, garlic, sliced potatoes, sage and the magic ingredient of vermouth.

The pheasant took longer to cook than Mr S thought (I assume that like chicken and turkey, the juices should not run pink when the flesh is pierced) - perhaps my pheasants are bigger than his.  The taste of the meat was superb - the leg more so than the breast, as it was more moist.  Perhaps it could have been served pink after all.

However, the vermouth stock/gravy with celery I did not take to at all - and the leftovers were picked out and heated through in a beef stock the next day, which was far taster to my mouth.


  1. Both meals look lovely Hazel, though I've never tasted pheasant. Are you enjoyign this challenge? Take care.

    1. Yes, I am! It's adding a real variety to my cooking, and Nigel Slater's non-fussy style suits me. In the book, there are maybe four or five recipes for the week, and so I can chose the two which I like the look of best.

      Out of these first four weeks, the lamb stew, spaghetti bolognase and the orange cake are my favourites.