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Braised pigeon with asparagus & carrots

Angela Clutton

A take on a 1960s recipe, inspired by Marguerite Patten

Recipe Meta


10 mins


50 mins






  • 4 wood pigeons
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 bunch of carrots with green tops
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 2 bundles of asparagus
  • 3 tbsp plain yoghurt


Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large sauté pan or sauté dish over a medium heat. Brown the pigeons on one side, then keep turning them until gently browned all over. Lift out with tongs or a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the onions to the oil. Cut the green tops off the carrots (but keep the tops for later). Cut the carrots into lengths 1cm wide and 10cm long. Add those to the oil too. Tuck in the unpeeled garlic cloves, toss round, season, then pour over the stock. Sit the pigeons on top of the vegetables, cover and cook for 30 mins over a medium heat.

Snap the woody ends off the asparagus spears. Add the asparagus to the cooking dish, cover again, and cook for a further 10 mins.

Remove the pigeons and set aside to rest. Use a slotted spoon to lift the vegetables onto a serving platter. Squeeze the tender garlic flesh out of the skins and into the cooking juices. Turn the heat up and reduce the liquid to around 200ml – this will take about 5-10 mins. Stir in the yoghurt and spoon the sauce over the vegetables.

Finely chop a handful of the reserved carrot tops. Scatter over the vegetables and nestle the pigeons on top. Serve with buttered new potatoes.

Images: Joe Woodhouse

A walk through the reign

This recipe is from a Jubilee-inspired exploration of seven decades of British cookery. Read the stories behind the recipes in Angela’s blog

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