Yield: Makes 8 servings
- 3/4 cup gin
- 3/4 cup vermouth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 4 pheasants, dressed*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup red wine
- 1/2 cup orange-flavored dried plums, chopped
- 1 (10-ounce) can chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Combine first 5 ingredients in a large heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag, reserving 1/2 cup of the mixture. Place pheasants in the remaining mixture in the plastic bag. Seal and chill at least 30 minutes.
- Remove pheasants from marinade, discarding marinade in bag. Sprinkle with salt; brown pheasants on all sides in hot oil in a large roasting pan over medium-high heat.
- Bake at 400° for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove pheasants from roasting pan; keep warm.
- Bring reserved marinade to a boil in roasting pan over high heat, stirring to loosen browned particles. Stir in red wine, and cook 4 to 5 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half. Pour mixture through a fine wire-mesh strainer in a medium saucepan, discarding solids. Add dried plums and broth, and simmer 5 minutes; remove from heat, and stir in butter until melted.
- Cut pheasants into quarters; place on serving platter. Drizzle with sauce and serve.
- *Eight (1- to 1 1/2-pound) Cornish hens make a delicious substitution for the pheasants.
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