Try this spatchcocked pheasant on an outdoor fire. Piquant with herbs and lemon, spatchcocking allows the bird to stay juicy.

Spatchcocked pheasant with lemon and herbs is a great idea when the thought of standard roast pheasant doesn’t appeal. It is quick and easily cooked on an outdoor fire, barbecue or on a griddle if the weather is inclement.

Spatchcocking involves breaking the backbone of the pheasant in order for it to lie flat and then cooking at high temperatures, allowing the skin to crisp on the outside, whilst the meat remains juicy and tender.


Spatchcocked pheasant with lemon, marjoram and green herb sauce
Serves 4
■ 1 peeled garlic clove
■ 2 tbs chopped marjoram
■ 2 tbs olive oil
■ Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
■ 100ml (31⁄2fl oz) dry white wine or sherry
■ 2 pheasants
For the green herb sauce
■ 20g (3⁄4oz) parsley
■ 20g (3⁄4oz) dill
■ 20g (3⁄4oz) chervil
■ 2 tbs capers, roughly chopped
■ 1 tbs Dijon mustard
■ 150ml (5fl oz) olive oil
■ 2 tbs white wine vinegar

Before beginning the spatchcocked pheasant with lemon and herbs, first make the sauce. Chop the herbs finely and place them in a bowl. Stir in the capers, mustard and olive oil and, finally, the vinegar. Season well and leave at room temperature.

For the pheasant, first use a pestle and mortar to crush the garlic with a good pinch of salt. Add the marjoram and pound it in with the garlic. Add the olive oil, then the lemon juice and wine. Season with pepper and stir. Spread the marinade in a dish and lay the pheasant on it flesh-side down. Leave to mar-inate for an hour.

Grill on a hot barbecue, skin-side down for seven to 10 minutes, moving it 90 degrees halfway through to achieve BBQ stripes. Flip to flesh side-down and cook for a further 10 minutes, turning 90 degrees once. To check whether it is cooked look at the meat on the thickest part of the leg.

Leave to rest for four minutes before adding a wedge of lemon and the green sauce. You are then ready to serve your spatchcocked pheasant with lemon and herbs.