How to fry a partridge

Table of contents:

How to fry a partridge
How to fry a partridge

The ptarmigan can provide an abundant portion of meat for one person. These wild birds taste great when roasted, but the meat can dry out quickly if you're not careful. Soaking the partridges in brine and wrapping them in bacon while cooking are two ways to minimize the risk of drying out the meat.


For 2 servings

For brine

  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) kosher salt
  • 4 cups (1 L) hot water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) dried thyme
  • 1 small sprig of fresh rosemary

For partridge

  • 2 chopped partridges
  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) butter, softened
  • 1 cup (250 ml) chicken stock

for sauce

  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) cold water
  • 1 tsp (15 ml) Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) red currant jelly
  • 1/4 tsp (1.25 ml) salt
  • 1/4 tsp (1.25ml) ground black pepper


Method 1 of 4: Part One: Preparing the Partridge

Roast Partridge Step 1
Roast Partridge Step 1

Step 1. Combine the brine ingredients

Place salt, bay leaf, dried thyme, and rosemary in a large bowl or serving dish. Pour hot water over the ingredients in a bowl.

  • Make sure the bowl you are using is large enough to hold both partridges.
  • The water doesn't have to be boiling, but it should be as hot as your faucet allows.
Roast partridge step 2
Roast partridge step 2

Step 2. Chill the brine

Set the brine aside on the counter for 30 minutes, or until it cools to room temperature.

  • Don't put the brine in the refrigerator yet.
  • You can carefully cover the bowl of brine with a paper towel or piece of cling film to keep out dust and other contaminants.
Roast Partridge Step 3
Roast Partridge Step 3

Step 3. Submerge the partridge

Place both partridges in the brine. Make sure they are completely covered with brine.

When the poultry is in the brine, cover the dish more securely with a lid or a piece of cling film

Roast Partridge Step 4
Roast Partridge Step 4

Step 4. Refrigerate for 8 hours

Place the partridges in the brine in the refrigerator. Keep the dish there for 3 to 8 hours.

  • During this time, the brine will destroy part of the muscle fibers of the partridge, turning them from solid particles to liquid. It also seeps into the rest of the fibers, saturating the meat with a lot of moisture.
  • However, do not leave the poultry for more than 8 hours, as the brine can spoil the meat if too many muscle fibers break down at this stage.

Method 2 of 4: Part Two: Roasting the Partridge

Roast Partridge Step 5
Roast Partridge Step 5

Step 1. Dry the partridge

Remove the partridge from the brine and pat dry with clean paper towels.

Also let the bird sit at room temperature for 20 minutes after removing it from the brine. This will dry out most of the excess moisture and also raise the temperature of the meat, thus reducing the amount of time it takes for the partridge to bake

Roast Partridge Step 6
Roast Partridge Step 6

Step 2. Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius

Prepare a small broiler or shallow baking dish by lining it with non-stick aluminum foil.

The foil is not absolutely necessary, but it will make it easier to clean the dish later

Roast Partridge Step 7
Roast Partridge Step 7

Step 3. Place the partridge on the brazier

Place both partridges on one roasting pan, breast side up.

Ideally, two partridges should lie in one dense layer. There shouldn't be a lot of extra space for them to move

Roast Partridge Step 8
Roast Partridge Step 8

Step 4. Add oil and broth

Rub each partridge with softened butter. After applying the oil, pour over the partridges and chicken broth.

  • When applying the oil, make sure it covers all the outer sides of the skin. If oil remains when the outer sides are ready, place it under your skin.
  • In addition to salt in brine, salt in broth, and salt in bacon (see next step), there must be a lot of salt in order to thoroughly season the partridge meat. Don't add any more.
Roast Partridge Step 9
Roast Partridge Step 9

Step 5. Wrap bacon around the bird

Place or wrap the bacon around the partridge, two slices per bird.

  • If you choose to wrap the partridges in bacon instead of just placing it on top, you may need to use toothpicks to keep the bacon in place.
  • Note that chopped salted pork can be used instead of bacon if desired.
  • Bacon adds flavor to the partridges, but it is also used to help keep the meat moist during the oven cooking process.
Roast Partridge Step 10
Roast Partridge Step 10

Step 6. Cover with foil

Loosely cover the entire broiler with aluminum foil.

The packaging should be loose enough. If you make it too tight, it can damage the bacon on the bird

Roast Partridge Step 11
Roast Partridge Step 11

Step 7. Cook for 25 minutes

Place the broiler in the oven and let the covered partridge cook for about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare a second small baking sheet by lining it with non-stick aluminum foil

Roast Partridge Step 12
Roast Partridge Step 12

Step 8. Remove the foil and continue to fry

Remove the plate from the stove and remove the foil. Remove the bacon from the partridges, then cook both partridges and bacon separately for another 10 minutes.

  • Place the bacon on the lined baking sheet before returning it to the oven.
  • The partridges should remain in the original pot, but they should be cooked open during this part of the process.
  • Use a cooking syringe to inject juices from the brazier into the partridges before returning them to the oven. Do this again after about 5 minutes, or in the middle of this final part of the cooking process.
Roast Partridge Step 13
Roast Partridge Step 13

Step 9. Let the partridge rest

Remove the partridges and bacon from the oven. Let the meat sit while you prepare the sauce.

  • When the bacon is done, it will be crispy.
  • Finished partridges should be golden brown with an internal temperature of 82.2 degrees Celsius.
  • If you do not have a meat thermometer, you can visually assess the degree of doneness by piercing the partridge with a fork. The fork should slide easily. Also, both legs of the partridge should move without difficulty.
  • Place the partridges and bacon on a warm plate and cover with foil. It doesn't matter how long you cook the sauce, the partridges should rest for at least 5-10 minutes.

Method 3 of 4: Part Three: Making the Sauce

Roast Partridge Step 14
Roast Partridge Step 14

Step 1. Pour the juices into a saucepan

Pour the remaining juice from the broiler into a small saucepan. Place the saucepan on the stove over medium heat.

Since these juices will contain a significant amount of fat, you can strain it by pouring the juices through a sieve into a saucepan. The fine mesh openings should separate the largest pieces of fat

Roast Partridge Step 15
Roast Partridge Step 15

Step 2. Add cornstarch to water

In a separate small bowl, whisk the cornstarch and cold water with a fork to form a slurry.

The two ingredients must be mixed thoroughly before proceeding any further. Don't let even some of the cornstarch stick to the bottom of the bowl

Roast Partridge Step 16
Roast Partridge Step 16

Step 3. Add cornstarch juice mixture

Pour the cornstarch mixture into the juices on the stove. Stir to combine.

Cook the new mixture in a saucepan over medium heat until it boils and thickens, stirring occasionally as it warms up

Roast Partridge Step 17
Roast Partridge Step 17

Step 4. Season with mustard, jelly, salt and pepper

Add these four remaining sauce ingredients. Stir well, then heat.

If you like, you can skip the Dijon mustard and red currant jelly, adding only salt and pepper. This will be a more traditional poultry sauce

Method 4 of 4: Part Four: Feeding Partridges

Roast Partridge Step 18
Roast Partridge Step 18

Step 1. Serve with bacon and sauce

Place one partridge per serving dish. Place two slices of bacon on top, then spoon a little sauce over the top of the dish with a spoon.

  • You can also serve bacon separately if you like.
  • If you want everyone to be able to add the sauce separately, pour it into the gravy boat and set it to the side of the plates.
Roast Partridge Step 19
Roast Partridge Step 19

Step 2. Slice each partridge individually

Because partridges are so small, everyone will habitually cut up their own bird while eating.

  • However, if you are not worried about serving, you can cut both partridges before serving.
  • There is no established technique for butchering a partridge, but usually begins by removing the legs and wings from the poultry carcass. Remove the meat from the legs and wings, then from the chest and back of the partridge.

Popular by topic