Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Melt the butter in a large non-stick flameproof dish. Season the pheasants, add to the dish and brown on all sides. Remove from the dish and set aside.
Add the bacon, onion, celery and sage to the dish and cook for 10 minutes until the onion is soft and the bacon is crisp. Carefully pour off any excess fat.
Return the pheasants to the dish and scatter over the apples. Pour over the cider and the chicken stock, bring to a simmer, cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 25 minutes until the birds are cooked through.
Remove the birds from the dish and keep warm. Return dish to the hob over a high heat. Let the liquid bubble until reduced by half, then add the cabbage, cover with a lid and cook for 3 minutes. Add the cream, check the seasoning, and continue cooking for 1 min more. Serve the pheasant on top of the cabbage mixture with some mashed potato, if you like.
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