Sunday 24 January 2010

Pheasant Biryani

Last October (and, if I'd been there, probably every other October) the colours around the Melbourne Hall Estate were beautiful. The trees were in varied stages of the Autumn change and the fields were a mix of ripened crops or newly ploughed soil. Some of the soil was a rich dark loam, while other fields were bordered by the kind of stuff which superglues itself to the bottom of your boots and makes you feel like you're lifting half a hundredweight with every step!

As we walked, however, we kept spotting these curious blue-barrel shapes on tripods - up the far hillside, over the thick hedge or in the distant corners of fields. It wasn't until we made an accidental diversion (wrong side of the hedge, full lap of the field looking for a non-existent stile - oops!) that we came across one close up. BIRYANI PASTE???

Closer examination revealed the hanging hose full of grain. Home-made pheasant feeders! I'm thinking that the estate manager must have some kind of arrangement with a local curry-house supplier! And the really clever thing - as a friend pointed out - is that the birds come ready curry flavoured!

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