Watch How to Cook Well at Christmas with Rory O'Connell Wednesday 21st and Thursday 22nd of December at 6.30pm on RTÉ One.


  • 450ml milk
  • 110g white breadcrumbs
  • 1 onion studded with 2 whole cloves
  • 1 large sprig of thyme
  • 50 g butter
  • 50 ml cream
  • Pheasant gravy


  1. For the bread sauce, place the milk, breadcrumbs, onion, thyme and butter in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook on a very low heat for 30 minutes or transfer to an oven set at 180c.
  2. The sauce can be made up to this point several hours ahead and will be reheated and finished just before serving.
  3. Place the bread sauce back on the heat and remove the onion and the thyme stalk. Many of the leaves will have fallen off the thyme stalks into the sauce. That's perfect. They are exactly where you want them to be. Add the cream and about 4 tablespoons of the gravy and stir to mix well.
  4. The consistency of the sauce should be neither too thick nor too thin but like softly whipped cream. Bring to a simmer, taste and correct seasoning and place in a heated sauceboat.