This recipe makes for meltingly soft and tender partridge, and the lemon inside the birds turns wonderfully caramelised and sweet. The birds are smeared with redcurrant jelly and roasted with red wine, making for an easy dish with a complex flavour.
- 2 partridges, backbone removed, ready to cook
- 6 rashers smoky bacon
- 1 lemon, unwaxed
- 2 tbsp. butter
- 2 tbsp. redcurrant jelly
- 100ml red wine
- 4 sprigs thyme
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 140C. Slice the lemon in half and rub the cut half all over the flesh of the birds, squeezing the juice out. Put a lemon half into each partridge cavity, along with 1 sprig of thyme and half of the butter. Season the birds inside and out.
Spread one tbsp. redcurrant jelly on top of each partridge, dot with the rest of the butter and sprinkle with the rest of the thyme leaves. Wrap each bird in 3 rashers of bacon.
Place the birds breast side down in a large deep baking tin. Pour over the red wine. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour - 1 hour, 20 minutes, until tender and the juices clear. Leave to rest for a little while under foil before serving.