How do you like your meat?

Meat products can be cooked to different stages, you can see the differences in:

• Internal Temperature • Inner colour • Moisture
• Outer colour • Firmness • Shape


Please note that if more tender pieces of meat are cooked to well done or even overcooked,
the results can be disastrous. The meat will be dry, tough and stringy and the eating quality
compromised. Please make sure to choose the correct cooking method and timings for
each product.



Internal Temperatures


How much meat?Medium


We are often asked how much meat should be
served as a single portion, so we've produced
this simple guide to help you calculate
quantities when cooking.

The weights given are for raw, uncooked
products. All suggestions are for a single main
course for a typical adult. As appetites vary
depending on age, profession, lifestyle and
also time of year, please treat this as a guide
only. If you are serving more than one course
you can reduce the quantities.



Serving Guide


Note: Please follow one set of measures, do not mix them. Metric Conversion 25g/1oz

How to use a meat thermometer


Cook delicious game and poultry cuts and
joints with confidence using a digital
meat thermometer. Set the required internal
temperature and insert the probe horizontally
into the centre of the cut. The probe remains
inside the joint during cooking, setting off
a beeper alerting you when your meat is cooked
to perfection.





Freezer tips

So many ways to enjoy fish and seafood

Your products will last longer and stay in excellent culinary meat terms condition if you keep them frozen at -18°C or below. For this reason, you should regularly check the temperature of your freezer and adjust your thermostat accordingly. Older freezers should be defrosted on a regular basis. It is also advisable to check the rubber seal on your freezer door at the same time. Most modern freezers have autodefrost, and do not require regular defrosting.

  • Keep a list of everything in your freezer and the 'best before' date. That way you can ensure that you use everything while it is at its best. It will also help you plan when you need your next Donald Russell order.

  • Upright freezers should not be overloaded, as this can prevent them operating correctly.

  • Chest freezers, on the other hand, should be filled up, as this helps to keep the temperature down, so your freezer runs more efficiently.

  • Tabletop freezers or freezer boxes are ideal for storing a few smaller items but should not be used to store larger cuts of meat.

Nutritional health & benefits


The nutritional quality of wild game meat differs considerably from most other meats available in the supermarkets. A natural diet and free-range lifestyle help to produce meat of character that is lean and flavoursome, with five times more polyunsaturated fat (the good kind) per gram than is found in domestic livestock.

Wild game is also a good source of protein and contains large quantities of vitamin B and iron which can boost energy levels. It also provides potassium (which helps the body's cells to work properly) and phosphorus (essential for healthy bones and teeth).

Its low saturated fat content, along with a healthy ratio of
omega-3 and omega-6 fats, can help to lower cholesterol
and decrease the risk of heart disease and cancer.





Poultry offers a lower fat and lower cholesterol choice (particularly when eaten without the skin) and the flesh is more easily digested than red meat. It is also a great source of protein.

Protein is needed mainly for muscle and bone growth. Once the phases of growth have past, protein has a valuable role in brain function and tissue repair. Good quality protein will supply a balance of amino acids to help regulate your moods and boost your brain power.

Because all of our poultry is entirely free-range, you can be sure that you're eating wholesome, nutritious, authentic poultry, just as Mother Nature intended.





Preparing game & poultry

So many ways to enjoy fish and seafood
Game & game birds

All wild game products appear very dark in colour and can
have an odour when first removed from the vacuum pack. Pat
dry with kitchen paper and allow the product to come
to room temperature - any odour will fade away after
approximately 20 minutes of exposure to fresh air.


Please follow strict but simple hygiene rules when handling
poultry in your kitchen:

  • Chill properly during storage.
  • Never bring raw poultry or any drip loss into contact with other food, cooked or raw.
  • Always clean knives, boards, work surfaces and hands scrupulously after handling the raw meat.

Before cooking poultry, remove all outer packaging and
carefully rinse the meat under cold running water. Rinse whole birds inside and out. Make sure no liquid remains inside the carcass by turning it over several times. Thoroughly pat dry with kitchen paper. Allow all poultry products to come to room temperature before cooking as this helps them to cook more evenly.


Game & Poultry - a few rules
  • Allow all products to come to room temperature before cooking as this helps them to cook more evenly.
  • Be very careful not to overcook your game and poultry as this can make it dry and tough.
  • Once cooked to your liking, leave in a warm place to rest for at least 10 minutes for individual portions and up to 30 minutes for roasts.

Passion for quality

Our Game

We source our genuinely wild game from Richard Townsend at his SQWV approved plant. Richard is a passionate hunter and butcher and selects only the best prime specimens for us which he matures in the traditional way by hanging and then prepares to the same high standards as we do our meat. The products are then professionally frozen straight after cutting to lock in quality and preserve their freshness and flavour.

All our game is fully accredited by Scottish Quality Wild Venison (SQWV) an independent scheme that upholds the highest standards of managing estates and handling the game. All our venison can be traced back to the estate of origin.

Please note: Our game is genuinely wild, and whilst every effort is made to remove shot from the meat, please be aware that some may remain.

Our Poultry

We source our free-range poultry from the beautiful Loué region of France. The Loué farms provide us with real old-fashioned chicken, duck, geese and guinea fowl which are naturally firm and full of flavour, with no added water like most supermarket poultry. Whilst we would love to be able to source our chickens from closer to home, we simply haven’t been able to find chickens of the same quality as these superb birds from the Loué farmers.

Where you see this symbol in Donald Russell catalogues you know you're buying Loué quality raised birds. In the UK, the average conventionally raised chicken has a life span of just 39 to 40 days. British free-range birds have a minimum of 56 days, British organic means a minimum of 70 days*. Donald Russell Loué chickens reach a minimum of 84 days.

*All figures quoted are for 2 kilo live birds.







The finest packaging for the finest products

Donald Russell products are sealed in hygienic vacuum packaging. The heavy-weight, food-grade, vacuum sealed bags help protect against freezer burn and prevent drying out during defrosting. Top chefs prefer their meat packaged this way because it's a natural way of keeping the meat fresher for longer. No artificial preservatives or gases are used.

Value for money

We believe you should be paying for prime meat and not for fat that needs cutting off before you can start cooking. That's why all our meats - including game and poultry - come 'kitchen ready' for perfect cooking results. There's no more trimming for you to do and nothing needs to be thrown away.

Size, shape & colour

Wild game and free-range poultry are natural products, so the size, thickness, colour and shape may vary, particularly with the smaller cuts, such as Venison Loin and Haunch Medallions, Game Bird Supremes, Hare Fillets and Poultry Supremes. This should be regarded as characteristic of its origins and genuinely wild nature rather than a flaw.



Every product you receive is labelled with a unique code number. This number is part of a set of records which gives us a full and detailed history of the product. Should there be any queries or complaints (or even compliments) about any of our products, we can trace the product back and investigate fully the source of the problem. It is a vital system to help us maintain our standards of excellence and also constantly improve. Your label is packed with useful information;

• Product description

• Weight
• Storage information

• Best before date
• EEC mark • Traceablity



When you receive your order

Donald Russell packaging

We have pioneered new ways of packaging food to ensure it arrives with you in perfect condition. Most of your goods are packed in sturdy presentation boxes and securely wrapped in bubble wrap. Your order is then placed in a strong, reusable cool-box which keeps everything frozen during transit, and protects your goods from knocks and bumps.

We are aware that packaging can have an impact on the environment and we are always looking for ways to reduce, re-use and recycle our packaging. If you have any comments or queries, please email

Your professionally frozen products

Our game and poultry products are frozen extremely fast and to ultra-low temperatures.

As butchers, we want you to enjoy your meat in superb condition. That's why we use state-of-the-art freezing techniques immediately after cutting, and vacuum packing. Whenever meat is frozen, ice crystals can form which then pierce the cell structure of the meat and cause damage. The faster food is frozen, the smaller the ice crystals. Our meat is frozen extremely fast, to ultra low temperatures. This method means that any ice crystals formed are tiny, which really helps to lock in the freshness, texture, taste and nutrients. There is a noticeable difference in quality compared with home freezing and it's a free service.

For quality and safety, place frozen products into the freezer immediately. Use by the date stated on the label.


Thawing game & poultry

Allow plenty of time for your products to defrost. Leave game and poultry cuts in their packaging and thaw out slowly in a refrigerator overnight.

To defrost whole birds, remove the packaging and place on a rack in a big container (like a baking tray). Cover with a lid or cling film and place on the lowest shelf of the fridge (so that the raw meat juices cannot drip onto items stored below and spoil them). Once defrosted, throw away any drip loss making sure it does not touch any other food which could cause contamination.

Defrosting times (approximate)
Game & poultry cuts: 24 hours
Joints & whole birds:  7-10 hours per 500g
Cook game within 5 days and poulrty within 24hrs after defrosting. Do not re-freeze once defrosted.

If you are short of time, place the product, still in its vacuum pack, in a clean sink or bowl and leave it under a cold running tap. The more cold water that can circulate around the product, the faster your fish or seafood will defrost. This method can reduce the defrosting time by a third or a half, but should only be used in an emergency.

We recommend that you do not cook these products from frozen or defrost in the microwave, as this can make your game and poultry tough and dry.

If you have a query

Quality, service and above all taste, are of the utmost importance to us. We guarantee your complete satisfaction, so if anything is not to your liking please get in touch, so we can put things right.


How to cook Game & Poultry to perfection

When you cook with the finest ingredients, you need no fancy recipes to make a fabulous meal. However, even the best meat can be compromised if it's cooked incorrectly.

This booklet has been prepared by our in-house chef to help you get the most from your game and poultry. Instead of hunting for recipes, use this handy guide to choose the right method for each cut of meat. Just follow the simple step-by-step instructions for outstanding results every time.