Tandoori Partridge

Difficulty: Medium

Serves: 4

Preparation: 5 mins plus 3 hours marinating

Cooking: 10 mins


  • 4 oven ready partridges
  • Lemon wedges, chopped iceberg lettuce, red onion and naan bread to serve

For the marinade:

  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 ½ tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • a good grating of nutmeg
  • 6 cloves
  • seeds from 10 cardamom pods
  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp flaked sea salt
  • 1 thumb fresh ginger, peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ½ small onion, roughly chopped
  • 250g full-fat plain yogurt
  • juice of ½ medium lemon


Put the spices, salt, ginger, garlic and onion in a blender and blitz until as smooth as possible.

Turn the paste out into a large bowl then stir in the yoghurt and lemon juice.

Remove the skin from the partridge and cut each bird in half, first along and through the breastbone and then the spine. Score the thighs and breasts lightly several times with a sharp knife.

Drop the halved partridges into the tandoori marinade and turn them over until all are well coated.

Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 3 hours. About 45 minutes before serving, light a small charcoal barbecue and let the flames die down to hot coals.

Take the tandoori pieces out of the marinade and tap off the excess. Put the birds on the barbecue and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until the meat is nicely charred but tender (or cook on a griddle). Serve with lemon wedges, chopped iceberg lettuce, raw sliced red onion and naan bread.

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