Sharp-tailed Grouse Katsu

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Prep Time: 15 min - Cook Time: 40 min

While chicken is the most commonly used protein in Japanese katsu, you can pretty much coat and fry any kind of tender meat in Panko breadcrumbs. Panko fries up quickly and stays crispy longer than most other breading and batter combinations I’ve tried.

Sharp-tailed grouse aren’t large birds, but with this flour, egg and Panko coating, one bird can be enough to feed two people. Figure in rice and sides, grouse katsu is good for those slim days out hunting. You also won’t have to worry about the flavor of the meat getting lost: sharptail meat is on the darker side and will stand up well to the breading.

In the pan, do not cook sharp-tailed grouse past medium; it tastes best still rosy pink in the middle. I’ve found the taste similar to teal and dove. This recipe also works with other grouse species.



 

Ingredients

2 Grouse breasts and 2 grouse legs (skin on or skin off)
1 large egg
1 1/2 cup(s) Panko breadcrumbs
1/3 cup(s) all-purpose flour
Kosher Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Vegetable oil for frying
Freshly chopped green onion, for garnish
Cooked jasmine white rice
Bottled tonkatsu sauce, to taste


Instructions

Step #1 In a shallow bowl, beat egg until all whites are no longer visible and it begins to form small bubbles. Pour flour into another bowl. In a third bowl, combine Panko breadcrumbs with ¾ teaspoon of kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste.


Step #2 In a medium saucepan or deep skillet, heat 1½ inches of vegetable oil to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. When the temperature approaches 325 degrees, begin breading the grouse: First lightly coat pieces in flour, and then in the egg, and then coat with the Panko mixture.

Note: Watch the oil temperature carefully and get dreading station ready before you add the meat; panko breadcrumbs can burn quickly. Use a candy/deep fryer thermometer and adjust the heat as necessary. Oil also shouldn’t be too cool; the breadcrumbs need to begin browning as soon as they hit the oil so that the grouse stays pink on the inside. The longer the meat needs to sit in the hot oil, the higher the chances that you’ll overcook the meat.


Step #3 When oil reaches 350 degrees, fry breaded grouse until golden on both sides, flipping halfway through. Do not overcrowd the pan, and fry meat in batches if necessary. Drain and rest on a cooling rack or paper towels before serving. Serve grouse katsu with tonkatsu sauce, rice and chopped green onion.

Pictured is Japanese kinpira, a salty and sweet burdock root salad often served in bento box lunches.


Recipe Card

Sharp-tailed Grouse Katsu

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Prep Time: 15 min - Cook Time: 40 min



Ingredients


2 Grouse breasts and 2 grouse legs (skin on or skin off)
1 large egg
1 1/2 cup(s) Panko breadcrumbs
1/3 cup(s) all-purpose flour
Kosher Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Vegetable oil for frying
Freshly chopped green onion, for garnish
Cooked jasmine white rice
Bottled tonkatsu sauce, to taste


Instructions


Step #1 - In a shallow bowl, beat egg until all whites are no longer visible and it begins to form small bubbles. Pour flour into another bowl. In a third bowl, combine Panko breadcrumbs with ¾ teaspoon of kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste.
Step #2 - In a medium saucepan or deep skillet, heat 1½ inches of vegetable oil to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. When the temperature approaches 325 degrees, begin breading the grouse: First lightly coat pieces in flour, and then in the egg, and then coat with the Panko mixture. Note: Watch the oil temperature carefully and get dreading station ready before you add the meat; panko breadcrumbs can burn quickly. Use a candy/deep fryer thermometer and adjust the heat as necessary. Oil also shouldn’t be too cool; the breadcrumbs need to begin browning as soon as they hit the oil so that the grouse stays pink on the inside. The longer the meat needs to sit in the hot oil, the higher the chances that you’ll overcook the meat.
Step #3 - When oil reaches 350 degrees, fry breaded grouse until golden on both sides, flipping halfway through. Do not overcrowd the pan, and fry meat in batches if necessary. Drain and rest on a cooling rack or paper towels before serving. Serve grouse katsu with tonkatsu sauce, rice and chopped green onion. Pictured is Japanese kinpira, a salty and sweet burdock root salad often served in bento box lunches.


About the Author

Jenny and Rick Wheatley
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Jenny and Rick Wheatley both grew up in Southern California and connected over a shared love of the outdoors. They started their wild game cooking blog Food for Hunters in 2011, where they share recipes, photos and thoughts on wild food. Today, Jenny and Rick continue to hunt, fish, forage and cook in the Cornhusker State – Nebraska. Their recipes have appeared in numerous publications, including Petersen’s Hunting, Game and Fish, Nebraskaland and North American Whitetail magazines.

The Nebraska Center for the Book awarded their book Hunting for Food: Guide to Harvesting, Field Dressing and Cooking Wild Game the Wildlife Honor Award in 2016.

 


Photo Credit

Jenny Wheatley
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Website: www.foodforhunters.com
Instagram: @foodforhunters
Facebook: www.facebook.com/foodforhunters



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