Aiden Byrne: Barbequed squab pigeon with cherries and palm sugar, foie gras mousse recipe

PUBLISHED: 00:00 11 October 2014

Barbequed squab pigeon with cherries and palm sugar, foie gras mousse Picture by  Emma Wright

Barbequed squab pigeon with cherries and palm sugar, foie gras mousse Picture by Emma Wright


When I explain this dish to our guests I ask them to think of game with red fruits then think of mulling the red fruits.

The work that goes into this dish is unbelievable but the finished product is amazing.

This is a real mix of classical versus modern techniques and is a true representation of the food from Manchester house.

This dish has evolved over the years from my earlier days at The Church Green, where we serve a simpler version on the five-course menu.’

Stuffed and confit pigeon leg

• 4 Boned and trimmed double Pigeon legs

• 100 grams diced foie gras

• 100 grams finely diced smoked cumbrian panchetta

• 160 grams finely diced fresh chicken liver

• 50 grams balsamic Vinegar

• 40 grams shallot confit (diced shallots cooked very slowly in butter)

• 50 grams potato (lovers choice) (peeled and made into thin strings on a mandolin)

• 50 grams clarified butter

• 1 kilo duck fat

• Sherry vinegar for serving

Add the diced smoked bacon to a hot pan with a little oil and cook until crispy. Add the pigeon livers and foie gras and continue to cook for 1 minute. Season with the vinegar and salt. Add the shallot confit. Remove from the heat and transfer to the fridge to cool. Fill each leg with the cooled mix, then tightly wrap with cling film. Poach at 80oc in the duck fat for 8 hours. Once cooked leave to cool. Slice the potato on the Japanese slicer and immerse in warmed clarified butter. Wrap the leg up to the knee. Leave to cool and harden.

Deep fry at 190oc and season with salt and sherry vinegar.

Cherry and sherry vinegar sorbet

• 200 grams of passed black cherry puree

• 100 grams of sorbet syrup

• 30 grams of sherry vinegar

• 1.5 grams of Gellan F

Blend the puree, sugar syrup and the Gellan F for 5 minutes with a bamix hand blender, bring to the boil to dissolve the powder, add the sherry vinegar and blend again for a further 2 minutes. Pass through a fine chinoise again and freeze in an ice-cream machine

Palm sugar and foie gras cherry

Stage 1 foie gras mousse

• 60 grams of foie gras mousse

• 25 grams of whole eggs

• 40 grams double cream

• 1.5 grams of pink salt

Warm the foie gras, cream and eggs to blood temperature, blend the foie gras and the eggs in the thermo until smooth and then gradually add the warmed double cream, season with the pink salt and pass through a fine chinoise.

Pass into a pan and steam at 87oc for 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool

Stage 2 foie gras mousse

• 9 grams of palm sugar

• 1 vanilla pods halved and scraped

• 4 grams of muscavado sugar

• 2 grams of cinnamon

• 2 grams of star anise

• 1 grams of cardamom

• 10 grams of egg yolks

• 1.5 grams of gelatin

Crush all the spices and place into a large heavy bottomed pan, slowly temper the spices, add the sugars and melt, trying not to stir too much. when the sugars have become milk chocolate in colour slowly incorporate the cream and the remove from the heat. Allow to cool and infuse. After an hour pass through a fine chinoise, place into the thermomix (food blender) and add the softened gelatin egg yolks and cook at 70oc for 5 minutes, pass through a chinoise again and set aside.

Stage 3

Mix stage 1 and stage 2 together when both are at room temperature with a spatula and pour into piping bags, pipe into cherry mold, freeze and carve.

Cherry jelly to coat the foie gras cherry

• 80 grams of passed cherry puree

• 40g mulled wine

• 5.8 grams of soaked gelatin

• .7 gellan f

• .3g xanthan gum

• 1.6 grams of sherry vinegar

Add the mulled wine to the passed cherry puree and separate into 2 pans, add the powders to one, bring to the boil continuously whisking, add the soaked gelatin to the other pan and warm gently to dissolve, place both of them into the thermomix at 60oc and blend until smooth for a minimum of 4 minutes, add the sherry vinegar at this stage. Pass through a fine chinoise and pass through a vacuum pac machine (whilst still warm) to disperse the bubbles. (Takes 20 vacuums) Pass into smaller bowls and dip the frozen foie gras cherries. Refrigerate until needed.

Other ingredients

• 2 squab pigeons (5-600 gram birds)

• 1 loaf of ginger bread

To serve

Portion the ginger bread into 3cm x 10cm x 1cm pieces and pan-fry in butter until golden.

Roast the pigeon carcass in butter and finish in the BBQ.

Serve as illustrated

Church Green, Higher Lane, Lymm, WA13 0AP

01925 752068

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