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Old 09-06-2005, 07:03 AM   #1
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Glorious Twelfth!

The grouse season starts in Scotland on what is known as 'The Glorious Twelfth' - 12 August... I have a friend who shoots and likes to share the spoils, so I've got a brace ready for dinner this evening.

Brace of young grouse, plucked and drawn
Giblets of said 2 grouse!
2 oz butter
6 rashers of streaky bacon (? is this known as Canadian bacon in the USA?)
2 slices white bread (remove crusts)
2 heaped tablespoons redcurrant jelly
Salt and pepper to taste

Set oven to 400F/Gas mark 6. Rub a little of the butter into the well-washed and dried inside of each bird. Season the outside of the grouse with freshly milled salt and pepper and cover the breasts with the bacon rashers. Place in a roasting tin and cover with foil. Allow 15 mins per pound + extra 15 mins. The grouse have a tendency to dry out so ensure that they are cooked, but do NOT overcook - short cooking time at a good heat is the secret!

Toast the bread, place giblets in saucepan cover with water and simmer until tender. Strain and reserve the stock to make the gravy Remove the livers, mash them with buter, salt and pepper and spread on the toast. Slip the toast under each bird for the last 15 minutes of roasting. Place the grouse and toast on a serving dish and garnish with watercress. Make a gravy from the meat juices, add the reserved stock and when thickened with a little cornflour, add the redcurrant jelly. Traditionally, in Scotland, roast grouse is served with game chips, redcurrant or rowan jelly and bread sauce.

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Old 09-06-2005, 09:45 AM   #2
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Ishbel:

I've never had grouse. I won't ask what they taste like (tastes like chic...). About how much does a dressed grouse weigh? My sense is that they are smaller than a chicken.
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Old 09-06-2005, 10:13 AM   #3
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Ishbel, "Canadian Bacon" is not really bacon. If I remember right, it's the strip loin, cured, and shaped into a round log.

From what my Austrialian friends told me years ago, a "rasher of streaky bacon" is the same as what we Americans call "a piece (strip) of bacon".
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Old 09-06-2005, 10:22 AM   #4
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I've never had grouse either, but I looked at a site about grouse-hunting, and it said they average about 1.5 lbs each, and you flush them out like you would quail.
Having once stepped into a covey of quail, I can tell you it's quite an experience. It startles the pea-waddens out of you!

I'm thinking, Ishbel, that your recipe would be a great way to cook Cornish Game Hens, which is about the closest I can get to game birds any more.
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Old 09-06-2005, 10:55 AM   #5
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Constance: The interesting thing is that Cornish hens are unheard of in the UK, especially in Cornwall!

I think an American cook friend told me that they were a breed of small chickens - but I don't know if that's true!

Allen: re the bacon thingy...... no.... US bacon eats and tastes nothing like British bacon!

Andy: the brace (2 grouse) I'm cooking weigh about 1.75 lb each.
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Old 09-06-2005, 11:21 AM   #6
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Did you hang the grouse?
If so, for how long?

What about the grapeshot?

TIA,
Alex
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Old 09-06-2005, 04:16 PM   #7
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My friend prepared the grouse and hung them - he delivered them to me last night and said they were ready to be cooked today or tomorrow.. - And what would a grouse meal be without the occasional pellet?
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Old 09-07-2005, 08:03 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
Ishbel:

I've never had grouse. I won't ask what they taste like (tastes like chic...). About how much does a dressed grouse weigh? My sense is that they are smaller than a chicken.
Grouse, at least here in the U.P. is a bit smaller than a Cornish Game Hen and has a distictive gaminess to it. Where the breast meat joins to the breast is especially gamey. The meat is fairly white and has the texture of turkey. Personally, I love fresh grouse. I'm not crazy about picking the BB's out of a poorly shot bird though.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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Old 09-07-2005, 09:47 AM   #9
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Goodweed:


Poorly shot????
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Old 09-07-2005, 10:17 AM   #10
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Andy - a bad shot will pepper the small birds with shot...! You spend ages picking them out of the flesh if you don't find them all before you cook them.

They are delicious - one of my favourite game birds - although I like pheasant and capercaillie, too.

Musing out loud: I'm not sure that capercaillie are seen outside scotland.... I'm off to have a google.

It would appear that the capercaillie numbers have been declining again and that it is recommended that they are not hunted... no wonder I haven't seen any in my butcher's shop for a while! I think I last ate some way back last summer in Caithness or Sutherland.
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