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Hunting seasons fill supper plates with varied flavours

This week's recipes include Fried Prairie Chicken and Wild Pheasant and Mushrooms.
FromTheKitchen_withJoyceWalter
From the Kitchen by Joyce Walter

The rewards of hunting season offer opportunities to enjoy the flavours of wild birds and other animals covered by provincial hunting regulations.
         

This week’s recipes provide two suggestions for preparing the treasures of the hunt.

• • •

Fried Prairie Chicken

3 lbs. Prairie Chicken pieces
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup flour for dredging
4 tbsps. butter
         

Pluck birds and remove innards. Wash birds in cold water and dry thoroughly.
         

Cut birds into serving pieces (legs, wings, breasts, thighs, etc.) and dunk into cold water and drain on paper towels but do not pat dry.
         

Mix salt and pepper and flour and dredge chicken pieces.
         

Heat butter in a skillet and add chicken pieces. Cook slowly until brown and tender, about 45 minutes.
         

Remove to a serving platter and serve with roasted root vegetables and a cream gravy. Leftover chicken may be frozen.

• • •

Wild Pheasant and Mushrooms

2 pheasant legs and 2 breasts
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsps. butter
3/4 cup pearl onions or 1/3 cup chopped yellow onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups of assorted mushroom varieties, sliced
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken broth
2 tbsps. cornstarch
2 tbsps. water
salt and pepper to taste
         

Preheat heavy dutch oven on stove top with medium heat.
         

Add olive oil and then half the butter and stir until butter is melted.
         

Dredge legs and breasts in combined flour and seasonings. Sear legs first for two minutes on each side. Add breasts and sear until lightly browned but not cooked, 2-3 minutes. Scrape pan and stir in bits of browned flour. Deglaze with a bit of water or wine.
         

Remove legs and breasts and set aside.  Add remaining butter to pan. Add mushrooms. Cover and cook until partially cooked, about five minutes. Add onions and garlic. Turn heat to high and add wine and reduce wine by half.
         

Reduce heat to medium high and return pheasant pieces. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
         

Mix cornstarch and water and add to pan. Stir then cook until sauce thickens.
         

Transfer contents to a serving dish or set pot on table. Serve with rice or as is.
 
Joyce Walter can be reached at ronjoy@sasktel.net