Our Top Ten Tips for game meat salads

by Annabel Warne July 04 2016

At this time of year it’s nice to think of cooking game outdoors on the barbecue but with our unreliable British weather outdoor cooking isn’t always practical. We like to use game, such as pheasant or partridge breast (on offer this month) in summer salads. You could take any chicken salad recipe and replace it with pheasant or partridge which has a greater depth of flavour.

  1. Roast a whole bird for lots of flavour before breaking it up for a substantial salad. We love Jamie Oliver’s Epic Roast Chicken Salad with green beans and sweet tomatoes
  2. If you have left over game meat give it new life with a zingy dressing and fresh leaves. Jamie recommends using up leftover game in this recipe for game bird salad with horseradish dressing
  3. A little meat can go a long way in a salad - this recipe from The Field for Thyme Crusted Venison Fillet pan fried recommends slicing the meat as thinly as you can to get more bang for your buck  
  4. Poaching the breast is a good way to stay in control of how quickly it cooks-you don’t want to overcook and dry out the meat. Jane Baxter’s Warm Pheasant salad is jewelled with pomegranate seeds and scattered with walnuts.
  5. If you pan fry the breast or a fillet marinate the meat for at least an hour or two before you serve it, so the flavours will all meld. Then remember to rest the meat so that the juice run out when you cut it leaving your meat dry.  Valentine Warner’s Seared Venison Salad is quick and easy 
  6. Complement pheasant or partridge with the sweetness of summer fruit, or the earthiness of beetroot and peppery leaves like watercress and rocket - we like John Torode’s Pheasant Salad with Beetroot & Watercress.
  7. Add a sharp lemony dressing, a creamy Caeser Salad dressing with parmesan and salty anchovies or just mayonnaise as you would in a Chicken Waldorf Salad. Try Game to Eat’s Mediterranean Warm Partridge Salad.
  8.  Add a scattering of nuts like walnuts, hazelnuts or pistachios for texture and crunch. Try this Warm Salad of Pheasant, Walnuts, Citrus and bitter leaves.
  9. Prepare the elements of the salad ahead if you’re entertaining (even the day before) and just put it together at the last moment.  Gennaro Contaldo’s Tuscan Rabbit Salad combines poached rabbit with bulgar wheat and fresh beans all of which can be prepared ahead.
  10. Enjoy these salads with a crisp white wine and some crusty bread as a light summer supper!