For the Grouse Hunter


A photograph of a side by side shot gun with the barrel cracked open and two shells visible. There are fall trees and mountains in the background.
A photograph of three dead Dusky Grouse on the ground with a broken side by side shotgun.
A photograph of an upland hunter holding a shotgun looking out over a mountain vista.

In our household wild Dusky Grouse is revered as one of the most delicious meats out there, especially when they are eating berries. This simple recipe is easy to execute but can certainly hold its own as the centerpiece for a romantic dinner for two with a good bottle of wine. Enjoy.

Ingredients (serves 2): 

- Fettuccine or any long pasta you have on hand 

- 2 wild grouse breasts 

- Mushrooms - whatever you like, I like cremini for the price/taste 

- Garlic (3 cloves) - 1/4 onion (yellow is ideal but not essential 

- Cream cheese (one good glob) 

- Fresh thyme 

- Aged goat manchego cheese - or parmesan is great too 

- Splash of white wine 

- Salt, fresh ground black pepper and granulated garlic

A photograph of creamy past in a bowl with grouse meet and green herbs on top.

Season the grouse breasts well with salt, black pepper, a little granulated garlic and finely chopped fresh thyme - set aside 

Get your pasta water (well salted) boiling  In a deep sided skillet sauté the rough chopped mushrooms in a little butter and/or olive oil - set aside 

In the same deep sided skillet, sauté minced garlic and finely chopped onion on medium heat in a little more butter and/or olive oil 

In a separate skillet, preferably cast iron, heat oil/butter on medium high heat until hot but not smoking - add grouse breasts 

Add a splash of white wine to the garlic/onion and let that simmer on medium low 

Add mushrooms back into the garlic/onion mixture 

Flip grouse breasts when they are nicely crusted on the first side  

Add pasta to salted boiling water and cook until just under-done 

Remove grouse breasts when just cooked and let them rest on a cutting board 

Add a nice chunk of cream cheese to the sauce pan 

Drain pasta but keep a cup of the pasta water Add pasta to the sauce pan and as much pasta water as needed to create a nice, creamy texture 

Slice grouse breast pretty thin 

Plate grouse on top of past and top with cheese, pepper and some more fresh thyme 

 Enjoy! Serve with a nice glass of wine.  - Garrison

A photograph of a man holding a dead Dusky Grouse with its tail spread open in a fan shape.
A photograph of a hat with feathers on it and mountains in the background.
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