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How to Cook Partridges and Partridge Recipes

Updated on April 24, 2015
Gordon Hamilton profile image

Gordon has been cooking since childhood. He loves above all to take fresh ingredients and combine them in tasty and hopefully original ways.

Pan fried partridge breasts on fondant potatoes with a poached pear tree is just one of the recipes featured on this page
Pan fried partridge breasts on fondant potatoes with a poached pear tree is just one of the recipes featured on this page

Partridges are one of the smaller game birds. While for many people, a partridge is only something which they would expect to find in a pear tree at Christmas, it truly does represent a delicious eating experience and the ways in which it can be cooked and served are many and varied. This page will show a number of ways in which it is possible to cook and enjoy partridges at their very best. It includes recipes for preparing breast fillets and one for roasting a whole bird. Here you will find ideas both for starters and for main courses. As a general guideline, you should allow one breast fillet per person for a starter, or two fillets or a whole bird per person for a main meal.

Partridges and vacuum packed partridge breast fillets can be widely purchased via mail order
Partridges and vacuum packed partridge breast fillets can be widely purchased via mail order
Partridge breast fillets
Partridge breast fillets
Whole raw partridge cleaned and ready for cooking
Whole raw partridge cleaned and ready for cooking

Faster and more efficient transportation methods, technological advances such as vacuum packing and particularly the overwhelming popularity of the Internet have all combined to make partridges and other game meats readily available to people who may not have had access to them before. This means that even if you don't know it, your fresh partridges may just be a Google search and an e-mail or telephone call away.

The partridges featured on this page were purchased in just such a fashion, as part of a larger, wild game order. The whole partridge was individually wrapped, while the partridge breast fillets came in vacuum packs of four. The pack in each instance was clearly endorsed with the best before date, both where the meat was to be used fresh and where it was to be stored frozen. None of this partridge meat got the chance to see the inside of a freezer but if you are using frozen partridge, ensure it is fully defrosted before being cooked.

Important!

As with any type of wild game which is likely to have been shot, there will always remain the possibility of some stray lead shot pellets being found in the flesh. Do watch out for this, particularly in the whole birds, as breaking a tooth on lead shot is not a pleasant experience...

Fresh Sage and Partridge

The fresh herb used throughout this page to complement the partridge is sage. This is simply personal preference, as it is my belief that no other common herb works quite as well with game of this type. Do feel free, however, to experiment with your own fresh herb of choice in pursuit of your own favourite recipe.

Pan Fried Partridge Breast on Potato Discs with Cider Sauce

Partridge breast pan fried in herb butter and served on potato discs with cider sauce, applesauce and redcurrant jelly
Partridge breast pan fried in herb butter and served on potato discs with cider sauce, applesauce and redcurrant jelly

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 10 min

Ready in: 20 min

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 1 partridge breast fillet
  • 5 thin slices from a large potato
  • 2 x 1oz sage and onion herb butter
  • 1 small glass (ΒΌ pint) of apple cider
  • 2 tsp apple sauce
  • 2 tsp redcurrant jelly
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped sage leaves to garnish

Instructions

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Potato is thinly sliced for fryingHerb butterPartridge breast is pan fried in herb butterPartridge breast is rested before servicePotato discs form bed for partridge breastPartridge breast is laid on potatoes
Potato is thinly sliced for frying
Potato is thinly sliced for frying
Herb butter
Herb butter
Partridge breast is pan fried in herb butter
Partridge breast is pan fried in herb butter
Partridge breast is rested before service
Partridge breast is rested before service
Potato discs form bed for partridge breast
Potato discs form bed for partridge breast
Partridge breast is laid on potatoes
Partridge breast is laid on potatoes
  1. You will need two non-stick frying pans for this recipe, one small and one large. Although the butter used here is previously infused with sage and onion, ordinary butter with a little bit of fresh sage can substitute. Add one ounce to each frying pan and gently melt.
  2. Season the partridge breast lightly on both sides and place it in the smaller pan. Fry over a medium to high heat for two minutes each side. Transfer it to a heated plate and cover with foil to rest. Pour the cider in to the empty pan and increase the heat to achieve a modest simmer.
  3. As soon as the partridge is in the pan, season the potato slices and add them to the larger pan. Fry for four to five minutes on each side over a medium heat until golden.
  4. When the potatoes are ready, drain them briefly on kitchen paper. Arrange them in an overlapping circle in the centre of your serving plate as shown to the right and spoon the redcurrant jelly and apple sauce around the edges.
  5. Sit the partridge breast on a chopping board, slice it in half with a sharp knife and set it on top of the potatoes. Spoon over a little of the cider sauce and serve immediately.

Partridge Breast on Black Pudding with Red Wine and Cranberry

Pan fried partridge breast, served on a slice of black pudding with a red wine and cranberry sauce
Pan fried partridge breast, served on a slice of black pudding with a red wine and cranberry sauce

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 10 min

Ready in: 20 min

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 1 partridge breast fillet
  • 1 slice of black pudding
  • 1 large glass of red wine
  • 2 tsp whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 1 oz butter
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Chopped fresh sage to garnish

Instructions

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Red wine and whole berry cranberry sauce is reducedPan frying the partridge breast in butterBlack pudding is laid on the red wine and cranberry reductionPartridge breast is laid on black pudding
Red wine and whole berry cranberry sauce is reduced
Red wine and whole berry cranberry sauce is reduced
Pan frying the partridge breast in butter
Pan frying the partridge breast in butter
Black pudding is laid on the red wine and cranberry reduction
Black pudding is laid on the red wine and cranberry reduction
Partridge breast is laid on black pudding
Partridge breast is laid on black pudding
  1. Pour the wine in to a small saucepan and add the cranberry sauce. Bring to a simmer to reduce approximately by half, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon and ensuring the cranberry sauce is fully melted.
  2. Add the oil to one small frying pan and the butter to another. Put them both on to a medium heat. Remove any remaining plastic rind from the slice of black pudding and add to the pan with the oil to fry on a medium heat for four minutes each side.
  3. Season the partridge breast and fry for two minutes each side on a medium heat. Transfer to a heated plate and cover with foil.
  4. Gently pour the red wine and cranberry sauce to cover the base of a deep serving plate. Sit the black pudding in the centre of the dish.
  5. Cut the partridge breast in half and sit it on top of the black pudding. Garnish with the fresh sage and serve.

Roasted Whole Partridge on Dijon Mustard Mash with Asparagus

Whole partridge wrapped in bacon and roasted is served on a bed of Dijon mustard mash, with sauteed asparagus and redcurrant sauce
Whole partridge wrapped in bacon and roasted is served on a bed of Dijon mustard mash, with sauteed asparagus and redcurrant sauce

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 50 min

Ready in: 1 hour

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 1 whole partridge (skin on)
  • 2 slices of Ayrshire middle bacon (or 4 ordinary bacon slices/rashers)
  • 3oz butter
  • Little vegetable oil
  • 1 large baking potato
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 5 asparagus spears
  • Redcurrant jelly
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped sage or other herb to garnish

Instructions

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Browning the partridge in butterAyrshire middle baconPartridge ready for the ovenSauteeing asparagus in butterDijon mustard is added to mashDijon mash forms a bed for the partridge
Browning the partridge in butter
Browning the partridge in butter
Ayrshire middle bacon
Ayrshire middle bacon
Partridge ready for the oven
Partridge ready for the oven
Sauteeing asparagus in butter
Sauteeing asparagus in butter
Dijon mustard is added to mash
Dijon mustard is added to mash
Dijon mash forms a bed for the partridge
Dijon mash forms a bed for the partridge
  1. Put your oven on to preheat to 220C/425F.
  2. Melt one ounce of the butter in a small frying pan and quickly brown the partridge all over, moving it around the pan with a pair of cooking tongs. Turn off the heat and push the pan aside to let the bird cool enough to handle. Wrap it in the bacon, ensuring the breast and thighs are covered.
  3. Lightly grease a roasting tray with vegetable oil and sit the partridge on the tray, breast side up. Put it in the oven for thirty-five minutes. After this time, turn the oven off and leave the door slightly ajar, allowing the partridge to rest for fifteen minutes.
  4. When the partridge has been in the oven for about fifteen minutes, peel the potato and dice it to about one inch chunks. Add to a large pot and season lightly with salt before pouring in enough cold water to comfortably cover the potatoes. Bring to a boil on a high heat then reduce to simmer for twenty-five minutes.
  5. The reamining two ounces of butter should be added to a small frying pan on a medium heat. Season with salt and plenty black pepper. Sautee the asparagus spears for three to four minutes, turning regularly.
  6. Drain the potatoes and return them to the empty pot. Mash them with a hand masher until smooth. Add the Dijon mustard and stir to combine with a spoon before laying them on the plate as what will form a bed for the partridge.
  7. Lay the asparagus spears next to the potato and spoon on the redcurrant jelly.
  8. Remove the roasting tray from the oven using protecting gloves and lift the partridge with a spatula on to the mashed potato bed. Garnish with the chopped sage.
  9. Although a knife and fork should be provided with this meal, to get the full enjoyment and most meat from the partridge, it should in the latter stages be broken apart and eaten by hand.

Oven Baked Partridge Breasts in Bacon with Roasted Potatoes

Partridge breast fillets wrapped in bacon and baked, served with roasted potatoes and trimmed green beans
Partridge breast fillets wrapped in bacon and baked, served with roasted potatoes and trimmed green beans

Cook Time

Prep time: 1 hour

Cook time: 45 min

Ready in: 1 hour 45 min

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 2 partridge breast fillets
  • 2 slices of Ayrshire middle bacon (or 4 slices/rashers of ordinary bacon)
  • Baby new potatoes (quantity as desired)
  • 2oz trimmed green beans
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Salt and black pepper

Instructions

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Partridge breasts are carefully wrapped in baconPartridge breasts are briefly fried before bakingCooked and cooled potatoes are skinned for roastingBacon wrapped partridge breasts are plated
Partridge breasts are carefully wrapped in bacon
Partridge breasts are carefully wrapped in bacon
Partridge breasts are briefly fried before baking
Partridge breasts are briefly fried before baking
Cooked and cooled potatoes are skinned for roasting
Cooked and cooled potatoes are skinned for roasting
Bacon wrapped partridge breasts are plated
Bacon wrapped partridge breasts are plated
  1. The potatoes have to be cooked and cooled prior to being roasted. Wash but don't peel them and add them to a pot of cold, salted water. Bring the water to a boil and simmer for thirty minutes. Drain the potatoes, return them to the empty pot and cover. leave to cool for at least an hour.
  2. Put your oven on to preheat to 180C/350F.
  3. Season the pheasant breasts and wrap them in the bacon. Bring a little vegetable oil up to heat in an ovenproof (no plastic handles, etc) frying pan and fry the wrapped breasts for about a minute each side. It's also important not to use butter in this instance, as it may burn in the oven. Put the frying pan in to the oven for five minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the door ajar for the breasts to rest.
  4. While the partridge breasts are in the oven, peel the skin off the potatoes. This should be easy to do by hand. When the partridge breasts are started resting, deep fry the potatoes for five or six minutes until crisp and golden. Drain on kitchen paper.
  5. The trimmed green beans should be added to boiling salted water for three minutes, simply to blanch.
  6. Remember to use an ovenprotecting glove when removing the pan from the oven and plate your meal for service.

Partridge Breasts on Fondant Potatoes with Poached Pear

Pan fried partridge breasts are halved and served on fondant potatoes with a pear poached in cranberry juice centrepiece
Pan fried partridge breasts are halved and served on fondant potatoes with a pear poached in cranberry juice centrepiece

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 45 min

Ready in: 1 hour

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients

  • 2 partridge breast fillets
  • 1 conference pear
  • 1 pint cranberry juice (approximately)
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 5oz butter
  • Half pint chicken stock
  • 4 Brussels sprouts
  • Salt and white pepper
  • Freshly chopped sage for garnish

Instructions

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Pear prepared for poachingPotatoes are added to frothing butterGolden potatoes ready for chicken stockChicken stock added to fondanting potatoesFondant potatoes are plated firstPoached pear is platedCut partridge breast fillets are laid on fondant potatoes
Pear prepared for poaching
Pear prepared for poaching
Potatoes are added to frothing butter
Potatoes are added to frothing butter
Golden potatoes ready for chicken stock
Golden potatoes ready for chicken stock
Chicken stock added to fondanting potatoes
Chicken stock added to fondanting potatoes
Fondant potatoes are plated first
Fondant potatoes are plated first
Poached pear is plated
Poached pear is plated
Cut partridge breast fillets are laid on fondant potatoes
Cut partridge breast fillets are laid on fondant potatoes
  1. Put four ounces the butter in to a fairly large pot and on to a medium heat. Allow it to melt completely and continue heating until you hear it has stopped sputtering. It ill have turned a nutty brown colour.
  2. Peel the potatoes, cut a slice of each end to allow them to free stand and half across the way. Very carefully, add them to the butter and season with salt and white pepper. Cook for seven minutes each side, turning with cooking tongs, until golden.
  3. Wash and peel the pear. Leave the little bit of stalk at the top intact but take a small cut off the bottom to allow it to stand upright on the plate. Pour the cranberry juice in to a saucepan deep enough to contain the pear, along with the honey. When the pear is added, the liquid should come at least two-thirds of the way up the side. Heat to achieve a fairly rapid simmer for twenty minutes for a soft pear or thirty minutes for a harder pear. Turn the pear frequently during cooking.
  4. Heat the chicken stock in a separate saucepan to a simmer. Very carefully (there will be a lot of sputtering) pour the chicken stock in with the butter and potatoes. The potatoes should be just covered. Simmer for twenty minutes then check with a skewer to ensure the centre of the potatoes is softened.
  5. The Brussels sprouts should be simmered in slightly salted water for six to eight minutes before being drained through a colander.
  6. Fry the seasoned partridge breasts in the remaining ounce of butter for two minutes each side. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil to rest while the remainder of the preparation is completed.
  7. Lift the fondant potatoes one by one from the stock and plate as shown. Remove the poached pear in a similar fashion and sit upright in the centre of the plate. Slice the partridge breasts in half and add a half to each potato. Plate the Brussels sprouts and scatter with the chopped sage as a final garnish.

Like these Partridge Dishes? Please Star Rate them Below!

4.7 stars from 3 ratings of these partridge recipes!

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    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 9 months ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Thank you very much, Peggy. Wild game is readily available on the Internet - at least it is here in the UK. Sometimes, however, postage and packaging can be prohibitive, so what I do is combine with three friends and we make one large order, splitting the cost of the P&P. It can make a huge difference to the real term cost.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 10 months ago from Houston, Texas

      You are obviously a great cook just judging from these many recipes. You gained another 5 star rating. I have never ordered wild game via the Internet but might have to consider doing so after reading this. Will share!

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 15 months ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      I love that story, moonlake. Although I love eating partridge, I am a great nature lover as well. I would love to have seen that little one you describe in its natural environment.

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 15 months ago from America

      We use to partridge hunt many years back. I love partridge, but they can get dry fast when cooking them. Your recipes sound great.

      This summer I was walking the dogs in the meadow. I heard the brush move, it scared the heck out of me thinking it might be a bear, but it wasn't. It was a little partridge all flared up and ready to fight me because she had little ones. She looked like a tiny little turkey. As long as she stays on this land she is safe. She was around all summer with her babies.

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 16 months ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Wow, Nell - I'd be doing my Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall roadkill routine if I were you... ;) No, pheasants and partridges are different but both make for great eating!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 16 months ago from England

      Whenever I go to Turville by car we nearly always run over about 20 pheasants, so........! lol! great to see you back on here! and is a partridge a pheasant.....? um!

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 19 months ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Thank you Chantelle and I'm glad this brings back pleasant memories for you. That sounds like a tasty way of enjoying partridges and something I will have to try.

    • Chantelle Porter profile image

      Chantelle Porter 19 months ago from Chicago

      Boy this sure takes me back. My Dad used to hunt partridge and my Grandma would cook them up and serve them in a cream sauce with polenta. Delicious. great article. Glad I came across it.

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 23 months ago from Northeast Ohio

      Maybe someday Gordon. I don't think I could stomach ostrich or patridge. Maybe someday!

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 23 months ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Hi, Kristen and thank you. Glad you like the ideas and hope you get to give partridge a try some day! :)

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 23 months ago from Northeast Ohio

      Gordon, I never would have thought of eating partridge. Great recipes for those want to be adventurous. Voted up for interesting!

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 5 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      You're probably right, randomcreative. It's a shame because a great many people will mistakenly believe they don't have access to so many wonderful foodstuffs. I am lucky to have found an excellent supplier - to complement my offline sources - as the number of suppliers a Google search reveals can be confusing, to say the least.

      Hope you can find a supplier to suit you. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I don't think that most people do realize how widely available game is on the Internet. That's good to know, though!

    • Gordon Hamilton profile image
      Author

      Gordon Hamilton 5 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Hi, RedElf

      Thanks very much for visiting and commenting.

      Yes, the photos and recipes are all mine. I think it's a shame that more people don't cook with game today. Maybe a great many don't realise how widely available it is in times of Internet?

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Wow - are these your photos? Super recipes. I haven't found a lot of game recipes here, and you have done a terrific job on layout, photos and instructions.

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