Pigeon with carrots

4
2 hours

Ingredients

Pigeon with carrots

  • 4 pigeons, jointed

Barbecue vegetable powder

  • 1 courgette
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 aubergine, small
  • 2 tomatoes

Pigeon sauce

  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 celery stick, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 100ml of Marsala wine

To confit the pigeon legs

  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, bashed
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • olive oil, to cover

Carrots

  • 8 baby carrots, peeled
  • 1 lemon, zest only
  • 2 tbsp of honey

To cook the pigeon breasts

  • 1 garlic clove, unpeeled
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme

Method

1
To make the barbecue powder for the carrots, char the vegetables until blackened on a barbecue
  • 1 courgette
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 aubergine, small
2
Preheat the oven to 145°C/gas mark 1.5
3
Scoop out the seeds and watery flesh, then place the vegetables in the oven and dry out until crisp
4
Blitz to a powder, pass through a sieve and store in an airtight container
5
Carefully joint each pigeon, leaving the skin on the breasts and legs and keeping the drumsticks and thighs attached. You will use the carcasses to make the sauce, so don't throw them away
  • 4 pigeons, jointed
6
Preheat the oven to 190°C/gas mark 5
7
To make the pigeon sauce, roast the pigeon bones in the oven for 45 minutes or until a dark golden colour
8
Slowly sweat down the onion, celery and garlic until soft. Add the herbs, then the bones, then deglaze the pan with the Marsala, allowing it to reduce and thicken
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 celery stick, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 100ml of Marsala wine
9
Cover with water and bring to the boil, skimming off any scum that appears on the surface. Reduce to a simmer and allow to reduce down to a thick sauce consistency. Pass through a fine sieve and set aside
10
To confit the pigeon legs, remove the thigh bones and trim the legs. Tie the thigh meat up neatly with cooking string
11
Add the legs to a pan and cover with olive oil. Add the herbs, garlic cloves and a pinch of salt and cook on a low heat for 10 minutes. It is important that the oil doesn't get too hot and start frying the legs
  • olive oil, to cover
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, bashed
  • 1 pinch of salt
12
Remove the legs with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. When ready to serve, heat the legs in the oven for 6 minutes
13
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
14
To cook the carrots, melt then honey in a pan with the lemon zest and add the carrots. Partially cook until nicely glazed, then transfer to the oven for 10 minutes or until cooked through
  • 2 tbsp of honey
  • 1 lemon, zest only
15
Remove from the oven and roll in the barbecue powder
16
Cook the pigeon breasts skin-down in a hot pan with a dash of oil, until golden. Add the unpeeled garlic clove, thyme, and rosemary and cook until rare (around 2–3 minutes each side). Leave to rest in a warm place for 5 minutes before carving
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 garlic clove, unpeeled
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
17
Trim the legs so they can stand on the plate, carve the pigeon breasts and season with sea salt. Serve with the carrots and pigeon sauce