34’s Roast Partridge with Elderberries
Made at 34 Mayfair | Serves 4
On 1 September, the game season takes on a new dimension, adding partridge, mallard, teal, pigeon, woodcock and rabbit to grouse and snipe. At this time of year, elderberries are in season and fantastic foraging fodder – they provide the perfect reason to spend a day in the country. We pick plenty of them and usually enough so they can then be frozen and used throughout the winter months.
4 partridge, oven ready
50g unsalted butter, for roasting
2 tbsp sunflower oil, for roasting
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 sticks of celery, chopped
4 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp plain flour
150ml red wine
1 tbsp redcurrant jelly
500ml chicken stock (a good quality cube will do)
100g elderberries, removed from their stems
Preheat the oven to 220°C/ Gas Mark 7.
Firstly, heat a heavy bottomed roasting tray on the hob. Put the oil and butter into the tray. When melted, lightly seal the partridge all over until golden brown. Remove from the tray and set to one side.
Add the vegetables and thyme to the tray, stir and cook for a few minutes. Put the partridge back into the tray, place in the oven and cook for approximately 12 minutes (longer if you prefer your partridge to be well done).
Remove the partridge from the tray and leave on a plate to rest.
Add the flour to the roasting tray and stir well on a medium heat on the hob for a minute or so. Pour in the red wine and stir and reduce. Add redcurrant jelly and gradually the chicken stock. Simmer for 10 minutes until the sauce has reduced by half and thickened. Strain the sauce through a sieve into a saucepan. Add the elderberries and any juices from the partridge. Bring back to the boil and remove from the heat.
To serve the partridge, either chop each in half with a heavy kitchen knife and serve them on the bone, or remove the legs and then cut the breasts away from the bone.
Serve with buttered autumn greens, mashed parsnip or roasted heritage potatoes.