Wood pigeon with cobnuts

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Alan Murchison uses cobnuts as a garnish in this glorious wood pigeon recipe. Cobnuts are a variety of hazelnuts and can be found growing naturally around the UK, particularly in Kent. When fresh, cobnuts have a distinctive coconut flavour, which becomes sweeter and juicier as the nut matures.

First published in 2015




Wood pigeon breast

Carrot purée

Bok choi



  • Blender
  • Fine chinoise


For the carrot purée, melt the butter in a saucepan on a low-medium heat. Add the shallots and sweat until translucent. Add the carrot and cook for a further 4 minutes. Add the carrot juice, thyme and water and simmer until the carrots are soft
Strain the liquid and blend the remaining contents. Add the reserve liquid slowly until a thick, smooth purée is formed. Season to taste and pass though a fine chinois. Set aside in a small saucepan
Prepare the bok choi by cutting in half length-ways and washing thoroughly. Blanch in salted boiling water for one minute and refresh. Set aside on absorbent towel for later use
For the wood pigeon breast, place a large frying pan on a medium to high heat. Season both sides with salt. Add the butter to the pan, as soon as it begins to foam place in the breasts, skin side down. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until golden, turn and cook for a further 4 minutes, remove from the pan to rest and reserve the juices in the pan for later
Saute the bok choi in a hot pan until slightly golden, season with salt and remove from the heat
To plate, pour the warmed through carrot purée onto each plate. Place the bok choi in the middle of each plate, slice each breast into three and arrange over the bok choi. Finish by sprinkling each plate with the cobnuts, baby carrots and juices from the pan
First published in 2015

Alan Murchison began working in family-run hotels in Scotland at 14, but it was a stint at Inverlochy Castle in Fort William that gave him his first taste of cooking fine food.

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