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Need Pheasant Dinner Menu Suggestions

We donated a pheasant dinner at a fund raiser. We now have to actually prepare and serve it. The pheasant breast will be served on a bed of fresh pasta lightly drizzed with wine reduction sauce. Appetizers include pheasant brat bites (small slices of brat served with pretzel pick) and crostini topped with Mascarpone and a touch of locally sourced Merlot jelly. The appetizers seem sort of disjointed so I"m trying to think what I could serve in addition that would sort of bridge them all together. Fresh vegies? Sweet and spicy nuts? an additional Crostini topping?
For salad I"m thinking of spring greens topped with raspberry vinarette and toasted slice of goat cheese. Can I repeat the raspberry in dessert? I wanted to do a light White Chocolate Mousse served in a bed of Raspberry sauce.

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  1. Some of my fondest memories as a child were eating smoked pheasant on toast points as an appetizer. Maybe you could use some smoked pheasant on crostini with a very small piece of roasted red pepper.

    1. Is it spring where you are? If so, some seasonal vegetables might make a nice appetizer - you could do roasted asparagus spears wrapped in a bit of prosciutto, a pea puree on crostini, something with artichokes, perhaps. I would skip the mascarpone appetizer since you're having cheese with your salad course and a creamy dessert.

      As for the salad, I would stay away from the raspberry vinaigrette if you want your dessert (which sounds lovely) to contain raspberries - maybe do a Meyer lemon vinaigrette instead?

      1 Reply
      1. re: biondanonima

        It's supposed to be spring but in Wisconsin we got snow yesterday. I haven't been able to find Meyer Lemons for awhile now. Trying to think of a do ahead approach for salad that makes it a bit special. But thinking about eliminating the goat cheese.

      2. Like blond, above, you seem to have overlap in ingredients but not quite a theme.
        Queries:
        Could you list the other apps so we can see how they're disjointed? Or these 2 are all?
        Will there be pheasant in the salad? Is it possible to make skin-crackling croutons from pheasant?
        .
        It sounds like several bird plus wine dishes -- make that the underlying tie? You'd just need to add a wine element to the brats. Champagne mustard?
        You could do some variation on a wine aspic caviar to go with the Mousse.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Kris in Beijing

          so far just the brat bites and crostini of some sort. I loved the mascarpone and merlot combo and it is different so sure my guests haven't had. Trying to add one more fairly simple app.

        2. Ooh, Traveler - if we have time my husband would love the idea of smoking pheasant. good one!
          The theme is really pheasant - and we already have the brats made and in freezer. I like the idea of adding the mustard dipping sauce - sort of elevates it a bit.
          And yes, my guests are all sort of wine fans so was trying to incorporate wine because they like and thought it might tie together.
          I'm kind of rethinking the salad course. If I ditched the goat cheese it would make one fewer last minute worries.
          also Blond, I was thinking of just simple roast asparagus on plate with pheasant and pasta to sort of green it up a bit; so maybe the pea or artichokes would be good. Do you think if I offered two or three spreads with the crostini and the pheasant brats that would all work together better than adding another completely different item - like fresh vegies or nuts?

          4 Replies
          1. re: chocchic

            Unless you're going with a crostini "theme" for your apps, I wouldn't do more than one type - you want a little more variety within your apps (i.e., one meat, one bread, one veg, etc.). How are you going to serve the appetizers? Plated as a first course, or passed with pre-dinner drinks?

            A little roast asparagus on the plate with your pheasant and pasta sounds nice. If you think ditching the goat cheese from the salad will make it easier, by all means do so - you could then do an appetizer with cheese if you wanted.

            1. re: biondanonima

              the apps will be self serve in the kitchen where all of my guests seem to fell a need to assemble. I'm liking vegie app idea ..maybe something with artichokes or peas. Or maybe I'll just do green beans on entre plate and then I could do something with asparagus. If I ditch the goat cheese and raspberry salad I could just do a more "Italian " dressing and as an upgrade add a crisp that is made of melted parmesean. I know it's cheese but not the creamy vareity.

              1. re: chocchic

                In that case, you could go any number of directions for the third app - little shotglasses full of some type of soup (cold or hot) could work, or a spring crudite platter, perhaps (blanched asparagus and pea pods with some type of dip, maybe even some artichoke leaves).

                If you do a vegetable-heavy app, I don't think you'll actually need any vegetables on your main course plate - the app plus a green salad will be plenty. Just use fresh herbs to garnish and that will add enough green (and save you an extra bit of prep time). The frico crisp on the salad sounds like a good idea - you don't have many crisp elements in the meal so adding one there would be nice.

                1. re: biondanonima

                  great ideas. Thanks so much. I was stuck in a place that I didn't feel quite comfortable but it's coming together for me now. Thanks

          2. Pheasant seems to "want" root veggies.
            Look at this gorgeous presentation:
            http://www.jessicagavin.com/test-kitc...

            1 Reply
            1. re: Kris in Beijing

              Kris - what a great link. I'm sort of committed to the pasta so the addition of roast potatoes seems a little heavy for this dinner but I've saved the link and will use another time. And I agree about the "want" even if it isn't fall.

            2. As far as an additional crostini topping that pairs well with the above I have been playing with Judy Rodgers (RIP) recipe for roasted figs with prosciutto and hazelnut picada. I love the flavors but not actual eating of the prosciutto wrapped half fig and picada mix and instead have turned it into a crostini topping. The figs get roasted then coarsely chopped, the prosciutto is coarsely chopped and the two are mixed with the hazelnut picada. The fact that there are fried breadcrumbs in the picada really doesn't overwhelm the crostini and these prosciutto, nuts and figs should work well with pheasant. Just a thought.

              1. Your tastes and cooking skills are clearly much more advanced than mine, but with my limited experienced with pheasant I favored wild rice, never had it with pasta.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Veggo

                  I agree pheasant does pair nicely with wild rice - but I have this wonderful sauce that I actually learned originally to make with chicken. The sauce would be lost over wild rice.

                2. For the salad sharper greens like endive, radicchio, arugala etc would be nice to balance the heavier main, a champagne vinegar dressing, chopped chives or chervil, some pretty thin slices of radish, sugar snap peas, and the parmesan frico on top.