Pheasant a' l'orange

Yield: 6 Servings

Measure Ingredient
2 (2 1/2-lb) farm-raised ready-to-roast pheasants
2 mediums Navel oranges
1 large Carrot; quartered
1 medium Onion; quartered
2 tablespoons Butter or margarine
2½ cup Water
Wild and brown rice mix (optional)
¼ cup Sugar
¼ cup Red-wine vinegar
¼ cup Dry red wine
2 tablespoons Cornstarch
¾ teaspoon Salt

From: Wendy Lockman <wlockman@...> Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 16:16:12 -0500 Country Living Holidays/92 Scanned & fixed by Di Pahl & <gg> 1. Heat oven to 375'F. Rinse pheasants and pat dry. Remove any excess fat from body and neck cavities. Reserve necks and giblets. Loosen skin from the breast meat of each pheasant with your fingers, With knife, cut peel or rind and all membrane off 1 orange; cut peeled orange crosswise into ¼-inch-thick slices. Reserve peel.

2. Place half of the orange slices on breast meat under the skin of each bird. Tuck wing tips under back to hold neck skin down. Place 1 carrot quarter, 1 onion quarter, and half of the orange peel inside each body cavity. Using kitchen string, tie the legs of each pheasant together.

3. In 2-quart saucepan, melt butter; remove from heat. Place pheasants, breast sides up, on rack in a large roasting pan. Brush birds all over with melted butter. Set aside pan with any leftover butter.

4. Roast the birds 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in saucepan with leftover butter, brown reserved necks and giblets. Add remaining onion and carrot quarters; saute 1 minute. Add water; heat to boiling. Partially cover pan; simmer giblet mixture over medium heat 45 minutes or until liquid is reduced by almost a third.

5. Brush birds with pan drippings. Turn each bird on its side; cover breasts with pieces of aluminum foil. Continue to roast birds 15 minutes.

Turn birds to roast on other side; roast 15 to 20 minutes longer orjust until juices run clear when thighs are pierced with a fork and breast meat near wing joint cut parallel to the bone is white with a touch of pink but no longer wet and soft.

6. While pheasants are roasting, prepare rice following package direc- tions, if desired. Drain body-cavity juices from birds into roasting pan; cut string off birds. Transfer birds to a serving platter; surround with hot cooked rice blend; keep warm. Add giblet mixture to the roasting pan; heat and stir to loosen browned-on bits from the bottom of the pan. Strain mixture into a 4-cup measuring cup or bowl; discard particles. Spoon off fat from top of strained liquid. You should have 2 cups liquid; if not, add water or chicken broth.

7. In 2-quart saucepan, heat sugar and vinegar to boiling, stirring often until sugar dissolves. Continue to boil sugar mixture or syrup until golden brown or it caramelizes 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside. In cup, combine wine and cornstarch; stir into syrup in sauce- pan. Whisk in strained 2 C liquid and salt; return to heat and boil, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens. Brush some sauce over birds; pour remainder into small pitcher.

8. Peel and thinly slice remaining orange. Arrange over pheasant breasts.

To carve, using sharp knife, remove the legs and thighs from the birds. Cut the drumsticks from the thighs. Thinly slice the breasts off the bone. Pass sauce with the meat.

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