Pigeon Salami and cured pigeon breast


One thing the current lockdown has created for us is time to experiment with curing meats. Normally we would be feverishly preparing for the upcoming wedding season in the kitchen, store room and garden.

We always have a fair bit of pigeon available curtesy of Ken who must be, judging by the amounts we receive, a crack shot.

Our loft is conveniently around 72 per cent humidity at this time of year which seems to work well and we have build a cage to keep any interested parties away from our meat.

We found a good recipe on The Guardian Newspapers website and subbed half the pork meat with pigeon breast.

The salami to the left is flavoured with berber spice which is a mix of peppercorn, coriander, cumin, cardamom, fenugreek, cloves, paprika, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. The one at the forefront is flavoured with green peppercorns, myrtle and citrus peel.

Here is a basic recipe

500g pigeon breast finely diced

500g pork loin finely diced

250g pork back fat finely diced

To this add 32g of curing salt and whatever flavourings you desire.

Mix thoroughly with very clean hands

I found some natural pig casing online and soaked it for 2 hours and piped the mix into the casings into lengths of about 30cm.

Hang somewhere safe from animals and with nothing underneath that could be contaminated by raw meat and leave for 2 or three days till the skins feel papery and then put into your curing place.

They are done when they have lost at least 30cm of their moisture, ours took about 10 days.

If you get any black mould then wash down the outsides with a watered down vinegar solution, white mould is fine.

Cured pigeon breast

Another recipe we found on the Great British Chefs website turned out to be delicious as well, almost like a pigeon bresaola and would be good with rocket, lemon and hazelnuts.

Put your cleaned and skinless pigeon breasts into this mix for at least 48 hours and then remove clean off and let dry out in the fridge till very firm. This was for 6 breasts and we blended all the marinade before using

50g of sea salt

50g of caster sugar

teaspoon of dried lemon verbena

3 bay leaves

a few crushed all spice

4 garlic cloves

6 black peppercorns, crushed

3 dried orange slices

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