Pigeon Rossini

Despite being named after the Italian composer Gioachino Antonio Rossini, Rossini is traditionally a French dish and the foie gras and truffle sauce showcase some of the country's most highly prized ingredients. Adam Byatt offsets the richness of these with the juicy gaminess of the pigeon and salt-baked celeriac, making this a superb winter dinner party recipe.

First published in 2015




Crushed celeriac

Spinach cannelloni

Truffle sauce

  • 50g of truffle, preferably Périgord
  • 200ml of Madeira
  • 200ml of port
  • 200ml of brandy
  • 2l brown chicken stock


Combine the Madeira, port and brandy together in a medium pan and bring to the boil. Add the truffle to the pan and poach for 45 minutes, then remove from the heat and leave to cool. Once cool, pour into a suitable container and leave in the fridge to infuse for 24 hours
Preheat the oven to 230°C/gas mark 8
For the celeriac, mix together the egg whites and salt to create a paste with a consistency similar to that of wet sand. Coat the celeriac evenly in the paste, place on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 3 hours
Meanwhile, finish the truffle sauce. Remove the truffle from the alcohol mixture and set aside. Pour the liquid into a pan and heat until reduced to a sticky glaze. In a separate pan, simmer the stock until reduced by half, then combine with the alcohol mixture. Grate over the poached truffle, mix well and set aside until required
  • 2l brown chicken stock
To prepare the filling for the cannelloni, blanch the spinach in boiling water for 3 minutes and immediately refresh in iced water. In a separate pan, bring the cream to the boil and simmer until reduced by half
  • 500g of spinach
  • 500ml of double cream
Drain the spinach and transfer to a blender along with the foie gras and reduced cream. Blitz until smooth and season to taste, then transfer to a piping bag and keep warm until required
Remove the celeriac from the oven and reduce the temperature to 170°C/gas mark 3.5. Carefully crack open and discard the salt shell, then peel the celeriac and crush the inner flash with a fork
Sweat the diced onion in a little oil over a medium heat. Once soft, add to the crushed celeriac along with the sage. Season to taste and set aside, keeping warm until ready to serve
Brush the sheet of feuille de brick pastry with butter and roll it round a metal rod or thick spoon to form a cannelloni shape. Place on a greased baking tray and bake in the oven for 9 minutes
  • 20g of butter, melted
  • 1 sheet of feuille de brick pastry
Meanwhile, prepare the pigeon. Remove the guts and place the heart and liver onto a skewer. Remove the legs, wishbone and undercarriage from the bird and discard, leaving the breasts.
Remove the cannelloni from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack, increasing the oven temperature to 190°C/gas mark 5
Add a dash of oil to an ovenproof pan and gently sear the pigeon on both sides for 4 minutes. Add the butter and skewered offal to the pan, then transfer to the oven and roast for 4 minutes
Meanwhile, place a clean frying pan over a high heat until very hot. Add the foie gras to the pan and sear in a little oil until caramelised, then remove from the heat and leave to rest
Remove the pigeon from the oven and carefully place the pan over a low heat. Baste the pigeon in the butter and pan juices for a further 4 minutes, then remove from the heat and season with salt. Leave to rest for 8 minutes
While the bird is resting, gently reheat the truffle sauce in a small sauce pan and season to taste if required. Pipe a little of the spinach cream into each cannelloni, ensuring both ends are filled to the edge
To serve, place a quenelle of crushed celeriac in the centre of each plate and arrange the foie gras, pigeon breasts and offal alongside it. Rest a cannelloni on top of the celeriac and drizzle over a little of the truffle sauce

Adam Byatt is a creative and accomplished Michelin-starred chef with a passion for British food. Starting his career aged sixteen, Adam has earned a reputation for honest cooking designed to showcase the very best local produce

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