We are now well into autumn, and game is plentiful and relatively cheap. The great thing about game, including pheasant, pigeon, rabbit and venison, is that it’s wild, natural and free range.

It’s also low in fat, and meat such as wild venison is high in iron.

Saddle of venison is fantastic when it’s roasted – just be careful not to overcook it – and makes a great alternative to beef if you feel like ringing the changes for a Sunday roast.

This cut is pricey though, so if you want a more pocket-friendly alternative ask your butcher for some diced venison for a casserole. Pheasant casseroled is also a treat, and it can also be roasted and served with bread sauce.

Or you can go to town with a wide range of game, and make a terrine such as the one below. The bonus with this recipe is that it’s made in advance, so there’s one less thing to do if you have a crowd coming to dinner.

Autumn game terrine with toasted brioche

Serves 8-10

1.1kg game meat (e.g pheasant breast, pigeon breast, duck breast, rabbit saddle or hind quarters, venison leg meat or fillet)


3 handfuls fresh white breadcrumbs

550g sausage meat

3 handfuls chopped parsley

Sprig chopped thyme

1 egg

Salt and pepper

8 finely crushed juniper berries

2 cloves finely chopped garlic

In a bowl mix the sausage meat, breadcrumbs, egg, garlic, juniper berries and herbs with your hands

Cut the game in roughly same size, 6-7cm strips, then fry in a pan with a drizzle of oil for 2minutes until browned

Line a ceramic terrine mould with either streaky or back bacon and slightly overlap each rasher as you go along.

Then put a small layer of forcemeat into the terrine, then a layer of game meat (eg. a mix of game meat or 1 type of game meat) then a layer of forcemeat and so on until the mix has gone.

Fold over the flaps of bacon then cover with foil, and put in a tray with boiling hot water to fill half way up the terrine mould, then cook at 160 degrees for 1hr 30mins – 1hr 45mins (approx.) or until the centre reaches 72 degrees with a probe

Once out and cooled, find something heavy that fits in the terrine mould to press the food while it’s cooling down, best to leave for 24 hours before serving.

To serve – toast a slice of freshly baked brioche and serve on a plate with a spoonful of homemade chutney.