Roast pheasant and King Oyster mushrooms

The game season extends from late autumn through to early winter, marking the ideal time for poultry such as pheasant, partridge, and grouse. These birds are renowned for their distinct gamey flavour, with pheasant being a particularly accessible choice. Its meat is lean, with the thighs having a dark, pungent flavour, contrasting with the breasts which are tender and succulent, and our personal favourite.

We highly recommend trying game together with grilled King Oyster mushrooms. Although surprising at first thought, the mushrooms accentuate these gamey flavours with their intense umami and meaty taste. To tame these strong notes, we roast Jerusalem artichokes until soft and creamy employing a technique that we love for roasted potatoes too.

Since discovering Thomas Keller’s approach to roasting chicken, we follow a similar process for most of our poultry. A night long brine, followed by 2 days of drying before roasting to yield a juicy, flavourful and well seasoned bird with a crispy skin.

Roast pheasant and King Oyster mushrooms

Course: MainCuisine: Traditional, Game, BritishDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




  • Brining and drying the bird [Three days before]
  • 1 whole pheasant (about 500g)

  • 3.5% solution of salt in water

  • 10 black peppercorns, lightly crushed

  • Selection of herbs such as thyme, rosemary, tarragon, parsley (in our case), tied up in a bunch

  • 1 garlic clove, unpeeled and crushed with a tip of the knife

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 tsp honey

  • Roasting the bird [The day of cooking]
  • Oil with a high smoking point (we used avocado oil)

  • Glaze

  • 60g unsalted butter, melted

  • 1tbsp light soy sauce

  • Sea salt flakes

  • Topinambur (adapted from Bon Appetit’s recipe for roast potatoes)
  • 400g topinambur

  • Extra Virgin Olive oil

  • Salt, black pepper

  • Mushrooms
  • 6 King Oyster mushrooms

  • 4 sprigs of thyme

  • Extra Virgin Olive oil

  • 30g unsalted butter

  • Salt, black pepper


  • Brining and drying the bird
  • Prepare a large airtight container, put inside a bunch of herbs, a garlic clove, bay leaves, black peppercorns and the pheasant.
  • Examine how large the volume of water will be to cover the whole bird. Dissolve the salt and the honey in it before filling up the container.
  • Close it or cover it and rest in the fridge for 8h (overnight).
  • Next, take the pheasant out from the brine. Pat dry the bird and place it on a plate or wire rack.
  • Keep the pheasant in the fridge for 2 days exposed to its cold dry air.
  • Roasting the bird
  • Preheat the oven to 190C fan.
  • Take a medium size frying pan, drizzle with an avocado oil and set over a high heat.
  • Lay the pheasant in the pan and cook until the colour of the skin becomes golden brown on the leg sides (about 5min).
  • Turn the bird onto its breast side to colour for 3min.
  • Prepare a baking tray, place a wire rack (the bird shouldn’t be in direct contact with the baking tray) and lay the pheasant on one of the thigh sides.
  • In a small bowl, combine the melted butter with soy sauce.
  • Brush the pheasant with the glaze and sprinkle with salt. Roast for 5min.
  • Remove from the oven and turn the bird breast side facing up, brush with the glaze and return for another 5 min.
  • Then, turn the pheasant to the remaining thigh side up and repeat the same procedure again.
  • Check the internal temperature of the pheasant: 80-82C on the leg and 60C on the breast (try to stick the thermometer in the thickest part). If the temperature hasn’t been reached, turn the bird and roast following the same order until you are happy with the temperature.
  • Remove the peasant from the oven and transfer on a tray. Cover it with an aluminium foil (so it doesn’t cool down too much) and let it rest for 15min before serving.
  • Topinambur
  • Preheat the oven to 220C. Halve the topinamburs crosswise and arrange them cut side down on a baking tray lined with aluminium foil.
  • Pour the water on the baking tray, just enough to cover the tray in a thin layer.
  • Cover tightly the tray with an aluminium foil.
  • Put it in the oven and bake for 15min.
  • Remove from the oven and let the topinambur cool for 5-10min.
  • Increase the temperature to 260C (the highest your oven can reach) and set on the grill.
  • Toss the topinambur with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and return to the oven.
  • Roast the vegetables until they are nicely browned. Keep in the warm oven (around 50C) until ready to serve.
  • Mushrooms
  • Cut the mushrooms lengthwise in ~0.5cm thick slices.
  • Heat up a large, nonstick frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil.
  • Once the pan is very hot, add the mushrooms and fry them until they are golden from both sides.
  • Take the pan off the heat, add the sprigs of thyme and the butter.
  • Season with salt and pepper and toss the mushrooms around.
  • Return them onto medium-low heat and keep stirring for next 2-3min.
  • Take off the heat and keep in the warm oven (around 50C) until ready to serve.

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