Brined, buttered and roasted. A real treat!
8 cups water
1/2 cup coarse Kosher salt
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Juice of one lemon
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons dried tarragon
2 slices bacon, halved lengthwise
In a large saucepan, heat water and salt until salt dissolves (no need to bring to a boil). Remove from heat and stir in brown sugar, garlic, cayenne and lemon juice. Allow to cool completely (20-30 minutes). Place pheasant in a large bowl and pour brine over. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove pheasants from brine and rinse off. Place in roasting pan. Discard brine. Mix together butter and tarragon in a small bowl. Rub all over outside of birds. Top each with two pieces of bacon. Roast, uncovered, for one hour to one hour fifteen minutes. Serves 2. Note: This brining method also works well with quail, Cornish game hens and chicken.