Cheshire Wood Pigeon, Spelt risotto, Celeriac puree, Willington Cider Jus and Wirral Watercress

Essential Cuisine

Essential Cuisine

Standard Supplier 21st October 2014
Essential Cuisine

Essential Cuisine

Standard Supplier

Cheshire Wood Pigeon, Spelt risotto, Celeriac puree, Willington Cider Jus and Wirral Watercress

Main prepared by Ben Costello in the Cheshire Heat of the North West Young Chef Competition 2014


  • For Stock & Cider Sauce:
  • 1 Goosegreen Wood Pigeon
  • Wood Pigeon Trimmings
  • Mirepoix (Carrot, Celery, Onion)
  • 300ml Cider
  • 300ml Stock
  • 50g Crab-apple Jelly
  • For Celeriac Puree:
  • ½ Onion
  • 1 Stick of Celery
  • 180g Celeriac, Diced
  • 125ml Milk
  • Baby Onions
  • 40g Butter
  • Bay Leaves
  • For Spelt Risotto:
  • 500ml Stock
  • 25g Butter
  • ½ Onion, Garlic, Thyme
  • 150g Spelt, Rinsed
  • 75ml Cider
  • 50g Celeriac Puree
  • Savoy Cabbage
  • 125ml Water


For braised baby onions:
Set oven to 180°c. Trim onions and place upright in casserole dish with butter, bay leaf, thyme sprigs and water.
Cover and cook until soft.
For baby onion rings:
Slice onions thinly.
Add bay leaf to milk and soak for 30 minutes.
Drain, coat in seasoned flour and deep fry at 190°c till golden
For Savoy Cabbage:
Blanch in salted water. Refresh. Finish in water/butter emulsion to serve.
For Spelt Risotto:
Sweat onion, garlic and thyme gently for 10 minutes.
Add spelt grains and cook for 2-3 minutes then add cider and reduce.
Add stock gradually, absorbing fully each time. This should take 20 minutes.
Remove from heat. Add 50g celeriac puree and butter. Correct seasoning.
For Celeriac Puree:
Melt 10g butter and soften celery, onions and salt.
Add milk, water, remaining butter, celeriac and seasoning. Bring to the boil.
Simmer gently for 25 minutes.
Pass, blend adding the liquor as needed. Correct seasoning.
For Cider Jus:
Coat bones in milk powder and roast at 190°c for 5 minutes. Add mirepoix and roast for a further 15 minutes.
Deglaze with cider and cover water and bouquet garni reduce.
Reduce cider by half and add the stock and reduce by 2/3rds (20-30 minutes).
Add crab-apple jelly and season to taste.
For glaze, take a small amount and reduce to a syrup consistency.

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