Mesquite Grilled Pheasant with Jalapeño, Sausage and Cornbread Dressing

Ring-necked pheasant breasts are partially boned, then brined for half a day in spring water with onions, garlic, cloves, bay and sea salt.  The breasts are  patted dry and allowed to air dry while the grill is prepared.

Once the fire is ready, the pheasant is painted with achiote-cumin oil and then grilled as you would chicken pieces.  The cooked bird is allowed to rest under cover for 10 minutes before being plated atop white cornbread dressing with onions, jalapeños and sausage.  The dish is moistened with glace de viande just before serving..

Mesquite Grilled Pheasant with Jalapeño, Sausage and Cornbread Dressing

Common Pheasants were introduced in North America in 1857, and have become well established throughout much of the Rocky Mountain states, the Midwest, the Plains states, as well as Canada and Mexico.  In the American southwest, pheasants can be found in the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge 100 miles south of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Most common pheasants bagged in the United States are wild-born feral pheasants; in some states, captive-reared and released birds make up much of the population.

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