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Pigeons on a Bed of Rice

ingredients

serves 4
4 pigeons, each weighing approx. 300 g (11 oz)
200 g (7 oz) 1 1/3 cups long-grain rice
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 stick (2 oz) 50 g Butter, Softened
2/3 cup (150 ml) 1/4 pt single/light) cream
125 ml (4 fl oz) 1/2 cup dry white wine
1 large onion/approx. 250 g (9 oz)
800 g (1 3/4 lbs) cucumber
2 tbsp butter
2 pinches seasoning salt
1 pinch white pepper
2 tbsp fresh dill

method

1. Bring rice to the boil with 500 ml (16 fl oz) 2 cups water and set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 220°C (425°F) Gas Mark 7.

3. Wash pigeons, rub well inside and out with salt and pepper, then spread with a thick layer of softened butter.

4. Put into roasting pan breast side down and roast for 20 minutes.

5. Place pot of rice in bottom of oven.

6. Turn pigeons over after 20 minutes, pour cream over them and roast for 10 minutes more, basting frequently with cooking juices.

7. Finally pour in white wine.

8. Switch off oven and leave pigeons there for 10 minutes.

9. Meanwhile, peel and finely chop onion. Wash cucumber and cut into julienne strips. Saute both gently in butter until transparent, adding seasoning salt and pepper to taste.

10. Continue to cook gently for about 15 minutes until cucumber is very tender, then combine with rice, cooking juices and dill and spoon onto serving dish. Arrange pigeons on top.

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