Your new favorite recipe for a perfectly browned partridge, quail, grouse, or pheasant
To elevate your upland bounty, all you have to do is give a pluck.
The itinerant uplander knows just how much effort goes into the procurement of a partridge, particularly on public land, so why not make sure that your time and passion for these birds is reflected in the produce? I like to take special care of cleanly-killed birds, that is to say the ones that aren’t too shot up, by preparing them whole and letting their subtile wildness shine through.
- 2 whole chukar, partridge, or small forest grouse plucked and brined
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 small lemon cut into wedges
- 2 Tbsp Glace di Viande preferably from light-meated fowl
- 2 Tbsp white wine or lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp flour
- Rosemary fresh
- Coarse salt
- Black pepper
- Pluck and brine your birds (basic brine recipe available here).
- Remove from brine, drain thoroughly, and pat dry. For real crispy skin, you can go one step further here and dry the birds in your refrigerator, or outside, if it’s cold enough.
- Once dried, thoroughly season the cavity of each bird with salt and pepper. Add a sprig of rosemary, a smashed clove of garlic, and a lemon wedge.
- Set your birds in a ceramic dish, brush generously with 1 tbsp melted butter and add a sprinkle of salt.
- Place dish in a 515*F oven on a middle rack for 20 minutes
- Remove, tent with foil, and let rest 5 minutes before serving.
- Combine drippings, 2 tbsp Glace di Viande, flour, and a splash of white wine to a saucepan, reduce by half, and whisk in remaining cold butter. Serve over wild rice or barley au jus.
Tristan Henry is a lifelong Oregonian and perennial student of wild food and wild places. Tristan spent his youth in wetlands and on farms of rural western Oregon, where he cultivated a sense for stewardship and love for cooking. After college, he relocated to central Oregon, where he manages a small advertising agency, co-chairs the Oregon Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, chases elk with his bow, and wanders the hills with his wife and dog in search of food and fun.