Try this delicious roast pigeon recipe from Philippa Davis to give your Sunday lunch a twist

If you have a freezer full of pigeon and you need to offload and make some room, try this roast recipe to impress guests and satisfy anyone’s hunger.


Serves 2

I think the sight of a whole bird on my plate is rather glorious; however, if you are introducing pigeon to someone new, I suggest once the bird is cooked and rested, you carve off the breasts and legs to serve.


Roasted purple sprouting broccoli

200g purple sprouting broccoli

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

White beans

1 x 400g tin cannellini beans

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

Pinch of dried red chilli

1 tsp thyme, finely chopped

40g strong cheddar, grated


2 whole oven-ready pigeons

2 sprigs thyme

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp vermouth

2 tbsp butter

2 tsp fresh lemon juice


  • Preheat the oven to 180C fan.
  • Season and toss the broccoli in the olive oil.
  • Lay flat on a baking tray and roast for 15 to 20 minutes until tender but starting to crisp on the outside.
White beans
  • Drain and rinse the beans.
  • Add the oil and garlic to a pan, then cook on a low heat until the garlic starts to turn golden.
  • Add the chilli and thyme, cook for a few seconds, then add the beans, 50ml of just-boiled water and season.
  • Stirring often, cook the beans for 10 minutes.
  • Take off the heat, lightly crush with a potato masher and stir in the cheese. Check the seasoning and keep warm.
  • Season the pigeons and pop the thyme inside the cavity. Rub with 1 tablespoon of the oil.
  • In an oven-safe pan on a medium heat, add the rest of the oil.
  • Brown all sides of the birds. Place breast side down and roast for 10 minutes for pink, 12 minutes for medium.
  • Remove from the oven, turn the birds breast side up and stir in the vermouth, butter and lemon juice.
  • Rest for a few minutes.
To serve
  • Spoon the beans on to a plate and top with the broccoli, pigeon and pan juices.