A few weeks ago I bought a pack of pigeon breasts from the Ealing farmers market. A hard day of wondering around Amersham's charity shops brought on a fierce appetite and this seemed like the perfect thing to satisfy it. Serves two hungry shoppers.
4 Pigeon Breasts (check them over for any shot that might be lurking within the flesh)
For the rosti:
2 medium potatoes, peeled and grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
large knob of butter, melted
large pinch dried thyme
Salt and pepper
For the sauce:
1 small onion finely chopped
1 shot glass of gin
5 juniper berries crushed
1 small handful of blackberries (I usually have some in the freezer)
Grate the potato and mix in the thyme, garlic, melted butter and a good grind of salt and pepper. Heat a small frying pan and add the potato mixture. Fry until richly golden on one side then turn and continue frying.
Meanwhile fry the pigeon breasts in a little olive oil for 3-5 minutes on each side then put in a warm oven to keep warm.
Fry the finely chopped onion in the pan juices (add a little oil if you need to - pigeon is very lean and will give off little extra fat). Add the crushed juniper berries and deglaze the pan with the gin. Add the blackberries and cook until they have softened to a mush.
Serve with a bitter green salad.