Pheasant meatballs with orzo 2016

Pheasant meatballs with orzo

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Prep: 25 mins Cook: 20 mins

Easy

Serves 2

If you've got leftover pheasant to use, this dish makes the most of a modest amount and is a great weeknight supper

Nutrition and extra info

  • meatballs only

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal980
  • fat68g
  • saturates27g
  • carbs57g
  • sugars7g
  • fibre8g
  • protein31g
  • salt0.9g
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Ingredients

  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
    Shallot

    Shallot

    shal-lot

    Related to the onion (as opposed to being a younger version of it), shallots grow in clusters at…

  • 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
  • 150g leftover pheasant meat picked from the carcass (including skin and fat)
  • 100g fresh breadcrumbs
  • zest and juice 1 lemon
    Lemon

    Lemon

    le-mon

    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 1 tbsp natural yogurt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp pistachio nuts, chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • small grating nutmeg
    Nutmeg

    Nutmeg

    nut-meg

    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

  • 3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 rosemary sprigs
    Rosemary

    Rosemary

    rose-mar-ee

    Rosemary's intense, fragrant aroma has traditionally been paired with lamb, chicken and game…

  • 200g orzo
  • 80g baby spinach leaves
  • 4 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 20g finely grated parmesan, plus extra to serve
    Parmesan

    Parmesan

    parm-ee-zan

    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

Method

  1. To make the meatballs, put the shallot, garlic and pheasant into a blender and process until finely chopped. Add the breadcrumbs, lemon zest and juice, yogurt and egg and blitz once more, until the mixture is clumping together, then tip into a bowl. Add the pistachios and parsley, stir well and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Oil your hands and roll the mixture into golf ball-sized meatballs. Put in the fridge to chill.

  2. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. In a heavy-bottomed, non-stick frying pan or skillet, heat the olive oil and rosemary, and stir to infuse the oil, then add the meatballs and fry for 4-5 mins, turning them carefully to brown all over. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, retaining the rosemary oil, and transfer the meatballs to a roasting tin. Put them in the oven for 10 mins to heat through while you cook the pasta.

  3. Cook the orzo following pack instructions, and drain when al dente, reserving some of the water. Remove the sprigs of rosemary from the olive oil in the frying pan and tip in the pasta along with the spinach, stirring to coat in the infused oil. Warm gently over a low heat then stir in the crème fraîche and Parmesan, plus a little pasta water (or stock, if you have it). Season and divide between plates, topping with the meatballs. Serve with extra Parmesan, if you like.

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