Sous Vide Pigeon | Recipe by

Pigeon cooked sous vide, coffee-cured foie gras, cherries and spiced bread

Pigeon cooked sous vide, coffee-cured foie gras, cherries and spiced bread Game
  • COOK TIME: 1 hour
  • PREP TIME: 12 hours
  • DIFFICULTY: Medium
  • SERVES: 4



  • 4 pigeons
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 4 slices of lardo, blended and passed
  • 4 sprigs of fresh thyme

Fois gras

  • 500g of foie gras
  • 500ml of water
  • 1l of milk
  • 300g of Rock salt
  • 200g of ground coffee
  • 10 single espresso shots, chilled

Sour cherry purée

  • malic acid to taste
  • 500g of cherries
  • 200ml of stock syrup
  • 200g of sour cherries

To plate

  • 4 slices of spiced bread
  • 1 handful of Greek basil




This delicious sous vide pigeon recipe by chef Luke Holder has been recreated for our website with kind permission from Great British Chefs


  1. Firstly, you will need to cure the foie gras. To do this, begin by combining the water and milk in a large container and then pierce the foie gras along the veins. Soak in the milk mixture and add plenty of ice cubes. Leave for 4 hours
  2. Next, combine the rock salt with the coffee. Remove the foie gras from the milk mixture and use kitchen towel to pat dry. Cover with the rock salt and coffee, being sure to push some underneath. Leave to cure for 8 hours
  3. For the second stage of curing, wash the rock salt mixture off the foie gras before placing in vacuum pack bags along with the chilled espresso shots. Leave to cure once again, for a further 8 hours. Once the curing process has finished, remove from the bags and transfer to a steamer for 7 minutes. Leave to cool until it reaches room temperature. Set aside until ready to serve
  4. For the sour cherry purée, pour the stock syrup into a pan. Add the sour cherries and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, pit the fresh cherries and carefully wrap the pips in a piece of muslin. Smash the pips until they are broken up. Securely tie the muslin so that the broken pips cannot escape
  5. Take the pan with the sour cherries off the heat, add the pitted fresh cherries along with the bag of pips. Transfer the mixture to a vacuum pack bag and use a vacuum sealer to seal. Allow the mixture to marinade overnight then remove the muslin bag with the pips. Finally, blend the syrup before passing through a sieve. Season if desired
  6. To prepare the pigeon, fill and preheat your water bath to 53°C
  7. Use a blowtorch to burn away any feathers from the breast, then use a sharp knife to cut the breasts away from the pigeons
  8. Transfer the breasts to individual vacuum pack bags along with thyme, lardo mousse and a small amount of oil
  9. Submerge the pouches into the bath and allow to cook sous vide for 12 minutes
  10. Once cooked, remove the breasts from the bags. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan until hot. Add the breasts and seal the skin
  11. When ready to serve, begin by toasting the spiced bread and slicing the cured foie gras
  12. Spoon a small amount of the cherry purée into the centre of each plate and arrange the pigeons breasts on top. Place the toasted bread alongside the breasts with the sliced foie gras on top
  13. Scatter the poached cherries around the plate. Finally, use the Greek basil to decorate
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