Quail, pigeon and grouse pie

For a splendid autumn dish try Martin Blunos's rich game bird pie, flavoured with wild mushrooms
By Martin Blunos
Quail, pigeon and grouse pie
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: plus cooling time
  • Effort: medium



  • 350 g shortcrust pastry
  • 2 pigeons
  • 3 quail
  • 300 ml chicken stock, fresh
  • 150 ml mead
  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaves
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 50 g wild mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 25 g raisins
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 pinches black pepper
  • 0.5 tsp ground ginger


1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.2. Roll out the pastry finely and use it to line a 20cm tart ring, reserving the remaining pastry for the pie lid.3. Prick the pastry base with a fork, line with greaseproof paper, fill with baking beans and bake for 10-15 minutes until set. Remove the greaseproof paper and baking beans and bake for a further 5 minutes. Remove the pastry case and set aside.4. Place the whole pigeons, quails and grouse in a large pan. Add in the chicken stock, mead, peppercorns, bay leaf and cloves.5. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer, skimming now and then, for 1 hour. 6. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the wild mushrooms and fry for 2-3 minutes. Set aside to cool. 7. Remove the game birds from the stock and reserve. Bring the stock to the boil and cook briskly until reduced by half. Strain and set aside to cool. 8. Remove the meat from the cooked game birds, discarding the bones. Chop the game birds meat into small chunks.9. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/gas 4. 10. Mix together the fried wild mushrooms, raisins and the chopped game bird meat. Spread the game bird mixture evenly over the base of the pastry case. 11. In a bowl, beat together the eggs. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper and mix in the ground ginger. 12. Pour the egg mixture over the game bird mixture in the pastry case, reserving a tablespoon of it. 13. Roll out the reserved pastry finely and use it to cover the pastry case. Brush the pastry lid with the reserved egg mixture. Bake the pie for 35 minutes until golden brown. 14. Remove from the oven, cool slightly then remove the tart ring. Serve with a spring onion and mixed leaf salad.

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