Tory Cobbler Recipe

A succulent pheasant stew topped with parsley and mustard cobbler

Please join us on a cookery course at Hobbs House School.

Our greedy aim is that everyone will leave with a lasting glow, belly and brain happy and full.

Photo: Joe Sarah

Serves 8 individual or 1 large cobbler


  • For the stew:

  • 1.5 kg pheasant, de-boned and cut into bite-sized pieces

  • Knob of butter

  • 40g plain four

  • 250g chestnut mushrooms, whole and cleaned

  • Salt and pepper

  • Few sprigs of thyme

  • Splash of oil

  • 200ml white wine

  • 30g unsalted butter

  • 500ml chicken stock

  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped

  • 1-2 teaspoons of Tewkesbury mustard (or English mustard)

  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

  • 100g crème fraiche

  • For the cobbler:

  • 200g plain flour, plus extra for dusting / shaping

  • a few sprigs of sage, chopped

  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon Tewkesbury mustard (or English mustard)

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

  • salt and pepper

  • 200g cold, unsalted butter

  • 1 egg, beaten

  • 150g rolled oats


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C

  2. To make the stew: place the flour in a large bowl and season well with salt and pepper. Add the pheasant pieces and toss to coat.

  3. Heat the oil in an ovenproof pan over a high heat. Sear the pheasant pieces in batches until browned. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

  4. In a separate pan, on a low heat, add the butter and a splash of oil and fry the onion for a few minutes, until turning golden. Turn the heat up, add a knob of butter and add the garlic and mushroom and thyme and allow to fry for a further 1-2 minutes.

  5. Deglaze the pheasant pan with wine and scrape the bottom. Reduce by about half and add to the mushroom and onion mix. Add the mustard and then the cooked pheasant and stock. Bring slowly to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Finish with crème fraiche and check seasoning and adjust as necessary.

  6. To prepare the cobbler: add the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Add the butter and rub in until you have a breadcrumb consistency. Stir in the oats, parsley, sage, and mustard and mix together. Season well with salt and pepper and add 1 egg to combine (if too dry add some water). Using one floured hand, roughly shape the dough into 24 small rough balls and chill until required.

  7. Arrange the dumplings on top of the pheasant stew leaving a slight gap between them to allow for spreading. Brush the dumplings with one beaten egg. Put into the oven and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the dumplings are crisp and golden.