How did 2009 treat ya?
For the most part, we were glad to kick 2009 to the curb at the stroke of midnight, but we do acknowledge that a lot of good things happened, too. Among them, Britta.
Yup, a dog changed our lives. This post is dedicated to Britta, because without her, we wouldn’t have met Anne, and without Anne, we wouldn’t have just lunched on chukar.
Let’s back-track. Yesterday morning, the city girl got a latte, threw the dog in the car and drove out to the middle of nowhere, CA. There, we met with Anne and Steve (among others) to tag along while Steve worked with some weims in the field. At the end of the day, we got 10-mo. old Britta out, just to see what she’d do.
Waiting for her turn to go.
Britta’s first point. Not perfect, but we’re still proud!
It was Britta’s lucky day; she wormed her way into Steve and Anne’s hearts, so they let us take home not one, not two, but FOUR! chukars!
Days’ end commodities.
Look at that breast meat!
Here’s Riley munching on leftover chukar feathers and Indy saying “eew, eew, keep that away from me, I don’t DO chukar feathers.”
Britta had a big day. She was passed out in the car before we even made it down the first corner.
We promised Anne and Steve we’d cook ’em up real good. So below, the proof and what we ate for lunch: Panko-crusted chukar breasts with some sautéed chukar legs and a garden salad from our yard. PEFECT 2½ oz. chukar lunch portion per person.
Note from the kitchen: We had planned to roast the whole bird, but changed it up at the last minute because skinless, we were afraid the chukar might dry out. End result: baked breasts and sautéed legs (one of the legs was badly broken, and all that were leftover were small bits by the time we got the shards out). We went “herbless” because we wanted to be able to taste the meat of the chukar. Next time, we’ll experiment with sage or rosemary.
We also paired the chukar with a garden salad because our lettuce box is out of control.
Stay tuned for what we end up doing with the other three chukars… [K]
Panko-crusted chukar breast with garden salad, tossed in champagne vinegar, grape seed oil, Dijon mustard and fresh chives, topped with aged gruyère and toasted panko crumbs.
Sautéed chukar legs. There was originally twice as many, but Britta counter-surfed her way into eating half of them pre-cooked. Boo dog, boo.
The clouds are rolling in. We’re about to be hit with three back-to-back-to-back storms. Repeat after me… CHUKAR STOCK, CHUKAR SOUP AND CHUKAR STEW.
Panko-Crusted and Sautéed Chukar with Garden Salad
~ Serves ~
~ Ingredients ~
- 1 whole chukar, gutted and feathered
- ¼ cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- Grind of black pepper
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- Grind of sea salt and black pepper
- 2 oz. garden lettuce
- 1 tbsp. champagne vinegar
- ½ tsp. Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp. grape seed oil
- 1 tsp. finely chopped chives
- Grind of sea salt and black pepper
- 1 oz. grated gruyère cheese
~ Preparation ~
ation Time: 45 minutes
Preheat oven to 425˚F. Inspect chukar for stray bullets (remove if found) and wash thoroughly, picking through any leftover feathers.
Cut away chukar breasts from ribs; cut away leg bones from legs. Chop up leg meat into bite-sized pieces. Save neck and back bones for another use. Pat dry all meat pieces with paper towel.
Lay out small baking sheet.
In a small sauté pan, warm 2 tbsp. of butter to melt. Turn off heat.
In a prep bowl, combine ¼ cup panko bread crumbs with 1 tsp. kosher salt and a grind of black pepper.
Coat chukar breasts in butter, then roll into panko mixture. Place breasts onto baking sheet, and top with leftover panko. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. Meanwhile:
Prepare the salad. In a small bowl, combine Dijon mustard with champagne vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Whisk to combine; then slowly whisk in oil to emulsify. Then chop chives and add into dressing.
In a prep bowl, combine flour with salt and pepper.
Five minutes prior to taking breasts out of the oven, coat the leg meat in flour. Turn heat on sauté pan with remaining butter and sauté legs in butter.
Set plate with garden salad, chukar breasts and sautéed chukar legs. For texture, use leftover panko from the baking pan to top the salad. Shred gruyère over lettuce and serve immediately.
Nutrition content per serving: 335.5 calories, 16.5g carbs, 15g protein, 24g fat, 0.5g fiber
Cost per serving: $ 0.84
Source: Rustic Garden Bistro
Cross-section detail of the chukar breast.
Boops, begging dad for a small bite.
Britta has a secret crush on Riley; don’t tell her we already know.