Learn how to tea smoke game for a new way to use up last season's game and clear the freezer before the season gets fully underway

If you are trying to use up the contents of your freezer before the new season gets fully underway, learn how to tea smoke game. Try our simple method for an excellent way to flavour and colour the game before it is cooked.

If you have a rather random assortment of frozen game birds left over from last season, read frozen game birds. What to do with them. Our game bird soup is easy to make and wonderfully satisfying after a day in the field, and it will clear the freezer for the season.


It’s the time of year when I try to finish the contents of the game freezer in preparation for the coming season and I may even try out a few new ideas. I am keen to have a go at tea smoking duck and pigeon. Any thoughts?
AP, Hampshire

Tea-smoking is an excellent way to flavour and colour food before cooking. The three main ingredients required are tea leaves for the smoky flavour, rice for the fuel and sugar to help sweeten and caramelise the meat. Line a heavy wok or saucepan and its matching lid with strong aluminium foil. Mix 2 tbsp fresh, loose tea such as Lapsang Souchong or Ceylon with 2 tbsp jasmine rice and 2 tbsp dark brown sugar. You could add 1 tbsp black peppercorns, three star anise pods and some fresh ginger, or experiment with other herbs and spices.

Put this mixture into the pan and place a rack over the top. Put the food to be smoked on the rack and cover with the lid, crimping the foil to form a tight seal. Place the pan over a high heat for about 15 minutes, turn off and leave for another 10. The meat is now ready to cook as required. (The kitchen will fill up with smoke unless the windows are open.)