Amy Willcock shows you how to prepare game birds with a brace of pheasants in this easy to follow video.
The first piece of advice is to check the bird; don’t just take any bird home with you. You want to check their breasts to make sure they are plump and age them by checking the beak and seeing if the cock has short spurs and tender feet.
Using short, sharp tugs of the feathers, you should start plucking the pheasant from the feet. When the legs are complete, it’s time to turn the bird over and pluck the back and then the front. It’s important to try not to tear the skin.
The next step is to take the wings off with a good pair of poultry shears.
The best way to get the tiny bits of quill out is to hold the bird over a candle or a gas ring. If the legs are still on the bird, that makes this process easier.
And don’t forget to remove the tendons before you cook.
Once the head is gone, it’s time to remove the entrails by cutting a slit in the vent, hooking two fingers into the bird and drawing out the entrails. When this has been done, the pheasant is ready to be cooked.