Serves 4

Ingredients

For the Pigeon

  • 4 anjou pigeons
  • 4 cherries
  • 4  mini red beetroots
  • 100ml beetroot juice
  • 10ml red wine vinegar
  • 20g butter
  • 80g cream of almonds (recipe below)
  • 40g crème of umeboshi (wakayama) (recipe below)
  • 50g brunoise of Lardo di colonnata
  • 50g toasted almonds
  • 20g gel of cherries with elderflower (recipe below)
  • 4 nasturtium leaves

For the Pigeon Gravy Royal

  • 40 kg pigeon or duck carcasses
  • 10kg bouquet vegetables
  • 800g shallots
  • 100g garlic
  • 2 red chilies
  • 2 vanilla pods
  • 100g thyme
  • 500ml crème de cassis
  • 250ml red port
  • 500ml cherry juice
  • 1000ml jus de veau
  • oil
  • 200g duck liver terrine

For the Almond Crème

  • 1000g Jerusalem artichoke slices
  • 200g butter
  • 200ml cream
  • 500g white almond
  • 950ml milk
  • 15ml amaretto syrup (Monin)

For the Crème of Umeboshi

  • 50g umeboshi from wakayama
  • 500g cherries
  • 10g dried hibiscus flowers

For the Cherry Gel

  • 1500ml cherry juice
  • 150ml elderflower syrup
  • 14g agar agar

Method

For the Pigeon Gravy Royal

  1. To make the stock, roast the carcasses in the oven until nice an brown.
  2. Place the carcasses in a big pot and cover with water.
  3. Bring to a simmer and then discard the fat.
  4. Add the sliced vegetables and cook for 8 hours, then sieve.
  5. Reduce the stock to a thick glaze. Then set aside.
  6. Slice the shallots and gently fry them in oil.
  7. Add the garlic, red chili, thyme and vanilla and then fry for 5 minutes.
  8. Add the crème de cassis, red port and cherry juice and then reduce.
  9. Add the jus de veau and 4000ml of the pigeon glaze.
  10. Cook gently for 2 hours, then mix in the duck liver terrine.
  11. Pass through a sieve and keep in containers until needed. Makes 6 liters.

For the Almond Crème

  1. Make a Jerusalem artichoke cream gently glazing the sliced Jerusalem artichoke with butter and a pinch of salt in a pan for 10 minutes without coloring the artichokes.
  2. Add 200ml of the milk and the cream and close with a cartouche.
  3. Cook for 20 minutes until soft, then transfer to a thermoblender and blend until you form a smooth cream. Set aside.
  4. To make the almond cream, place the white almonds in a pan together with 750ml of milk and bring to a boil, then transfer to a thermoblender.
  5. Add 500g of the Jerusalem Artichoke cream and the amaretto syrup and then blend on high speed until smooth,
  6. Pass through a sieve and then place in piping bags.

For the Crème of Umeboshi

  1. Wash the cherries and place them in a pan with the hibiscus flowers.
  2. Cook to make a compote, then pass through a sieve.
  3. Unpit the umeboshi and put with the cherry puree into a blender.
  4. Blend together to form a fine puree and pass through a sieve again.

For the Cherry Gel

  1. Reduce the cherry juice to 850ml.
  2. Add the elderflower syrup and agar agar and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Put the mixture in a container and let it set in the fridge.
  4. Mix with a blender until smooth and place in bottles.

For the Pigeon

  1. Cook the mini red beetroots in water for 10 minutes, then refresh in ice water and peel them and cut in half.
  2. Heat the reduced beetroot juice with red wine vinegar and butter just before serving. Then add the split cherry’s in the last 10 seconds to warm and glaze them.
  3. Clean the pigeons and discard the insides. Keep the bones to use for the gravy.
  4. Brown the pigeons in oil and put on a tray, season with salt and blowtorch to remove any last feathers.
  5. Cook the pigeon in the oven for 28minutes at 65°.
  6. Once cooked, rest the pigeons for 5 minutes and then cut off the filets.
  7. Brush the skin side with umeboshi crème and cover with the almond mixture.
  8. To make the almond mixture, mix the toasted almonds in a blender until crunchy, flame torch the brunoise of lardo di colonnata and mix together.
  9. Reheat the pigeon covered with the almond mixture under a grill.
  10. Place the filets on the plate together with the almond cream, cherry gel, beetroots, cherries and nasturtium leaves. Serve with the gravy.

 

Recipe Courtesy of Jonathan Zandbergen of Michelin-starred Restaurant Hotel Merlet.