Spring menus get a boost from the line of MacFarlane Pheasant products that offer the flavor, consistency, and convenience that food service operators demand. Banquet Chef Roman Lazowski of the University of Wisconsin Memorial Union in Madison is just one of many food service professionals who have discovered that patron-pleasing pheasant is a versatile ingredient that provides the winning combination of light, sweet flavor, consistency and quality. “We’re involved in higher-end catering here, for alumni events, athletic banquets, holidays and fund-raisers. I use the MacFarlane Pheasant Airline Breast. I love the shape of it, and because I do a lot of catering, I need a consistent size. I have done chicken 6,000 ways because everybody is health-conscious. Pheasant gives me an opportunity to do something a little different, an avenue for doing something a little nicer.” Chef Lazowski says.
“I like the flavor profile of pheasant. It actually tastes like a bird. My catering can go anywhere from four people to 400, so I need to make sure every pheasant breast is consistent with the rest. And when I’m cooking it, I love the way the pheasant breast plumps up, so it doesn’t look flat. It looks good on the plate. I can give the customer something special that they wouldn’t get at home,” he adds.
Chef Lazowski features pheasant in recipes such as a duo plate with a short rib over creamed polenta, and pheasant on top of a wild rice cake, served with Cumberland chutney. “We’ve just started using pheasant. At a recent event, we served Airline Pheasant Breast. There were about 80 people there, and they asked the cooks to come out. They gave us a standing ovation.” His other recipe ideas include earthy pasta dishes with mushrooms, sliced roasted pheasant breast, shallots and red peppers. “I tried making the dish with chicken,” he says, “but the grill taste was coming out more than the earthiness. With pheasant, you really get the earthiness of the mushrooms and shallots with the bird and it rounds out the dish nicely.”
For spring menus, Chef Lazowski is looking at ideas such as morel and fava bean risotto paired with Pheasant Airline Breast–herb-crusted pheasant breast, made with fresh herbs and ramps.
MacFarlane Pheasant products—Whole Pheasant, Boneless Pheasant Breasts, Pheasant Airline Breasts, Smoked Pheasant and recipe-ready Fully Cooked Pheasant Breast—offer a quality center-of-the-plate protein with an upscale image and a healthful nutrition profile. Pheasant is lower in fat and cholesterol than chicken, domestic turkey or lean beef. Chef Lazowski adds, “A lot of people still relate to pheasant as being a luxury dish, or are afraid it’s gamey, but once they try it they know this isn’t your parent’s pheasant. It has a very clean taste.”
MacFarlane Pheasants has a tradition of quality since 1929. Today, the All-Natural third party-certified products are produced with pasture-to-plate oversight, on a family-owned and operated farm with its own packaging facility. The pheasants are humanely handled, and are fed all-natural grains, with no antibiotics or animal by-products.
For foodservice-friendly recipe ideas featuring MacFarlane Pheasant, visit the food service section of the website at www.pheasantfordinner.com. You’ll also find product details and nutrition information.