With all game birds, care is needed to avoid overcooking, which can make the flesh dry.

Younger pheasants roast perfectly if you are careful to rub butter into the skin and wrap them in fat bacon and begin the roasting by covering them loosely in foil.

Older birds towards the end of the season (late January/February) are better casseroled.

The hen pheasant is smaller and will serve two people perfectly, while the cock bird is larger and may even serve three. For a casserole for four people, a brace, one of each, would fit the bill perfectly. And a good thing to remember here is that cold pheasant is excellent in sandwiches.

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