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BrentD, Prof, ClapperZapper, John Roberts, Recoil Rob, Stanton Hillis, Ted Schefelbein
Total Likes: 8
Original Post (Thread Starter)
#608278 12/23/2021 11:08 PM
by Lloyd3
Served it last night for the first time for a dear old flyfishing friend who'd requested it as he'd never had it before (a native Texan). Something of an appetizer, served with drinks before the salad and ribeye streak main-course. Nothing fancy, just two birds (breasts only) done bacon-wrapped and aged per Romi Perkins directions in her classic Orvis cookbook. Aged ~5-days undrawn in a refrigerator, then cleaned and frozen (for ~3-months), thawed-out and brined (sugar & kosher salt), boned-out and wrapped in fairly thin-sliced bacon, and then grilled over a hot flame to start (then slowed down to a careful finish). Done to a turn and then rested under foil for a few minutes. By-far, the best ruffed grouse I've ever had. Snow-white and firm (as usual), but... moist, tender, flavorful, and incredibly jucy. Almost like I was having it for the first time(!) My guests and wife were blown away by them (& this wasn't my wife's 1st time). Sometimes the bacon overwhelms the delicate flavor of the bird, but not here. The bacon was clearly part of the show, but these birds were incredibly savory and in almost a new way for me. Nothing like chicken hen or anything else I can think of. My buddy Walt said it somewhat compared to quail for him and I would agree, but better perhaps, and more pronounced than I've ever tasted it before.
Liked Replies
by keith
I tried goose hunting while in college, because one roommate was very enthusiastic about it. We each shot a Canada goose, and he cooked them, doing several things to make them palatable. They weren't, and I immediately lost interest in hunting a bird that tasted so bad.

It's little wonder why geese have become so plentiful compared to good tasting birds like grouse and pheasants. I feel we should harvest geese, and feed them to people on Food Stamps as an incentive to get a job.

I drink bourbon instead of tequila because I don't want to drink a liquor that takes a dose of salt and lime to hide the nasty taste. And I don't want any game bird that needs all sorts of brine, spices, and witchcraft treatments just to make it barely fit to feed the dog.
2 members like this
by mc
Could you taste the grouse?
1 member likes this
by Ted Schefelbein
Ted Schefelbein
Originally Posted by bavarianbrit
I have just read about cooking badger in an old German hunting magazine. It said to skin it then leave it in a fast running stream for five days before cooking it. Hm!!!

I’d have to be really hungry to consider tangling with, skinning, and eating a badger.

Hungrier than I’ve ever been, I’m going to guess.

Bet you have to wrap his ass with a bunch of bacon.....

1 member likes this
by lonesome roads
lonesome roads
Originally Posted by Geo. Newbern
I don't eat the local golf course Canadas we have around home...Geo

We’ll see how picky you are when hamburger hits $25.00 a pound this summer.

I hit a goose with a golf ball once. (not on purpose)
1 member likes this
by Parabola
There is an old country recipe that I have been told is the secret for getting the best out of, variously, Rooks, Pike, Capercaillie and Cormorants.

It goes:-

1. Wrap in clean muslin.
2. Dig a hole in damp soil and bury it
3. Leave for 5 days
4. Forget where you buried it.
1 member likes this
by Hal
Thanks Ted. Just read up on dry brining and will start tonight. All I have is Morton's canning and pickling salt so hope it works.
1 member likes this
by Lloyd3
I am pleased with how this post has evolved. Lots of first-hand knowledge to share about how to make game first-rate table fare. I have learned much in its reading. I recognize that ruffed grouse needs very little to make it wonderful, and that bacon wrapping risks the loss of the subtile flavors these birds possess. One clearly doesn't need to age a ruffie, but I was looking to make these birds as good as could be and I now think aging has some distinct advantages here. I will draw them next time to see if I'm able to discern the flavors that CZ was talking about (& Romi Perkins agress with him that the birds do need to be drawn immediately).
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