Hunting cuisine consists of dishes made from meat products of wild birds and animals. The art of game cooking is rooted in the past of mankind and is an obligatory festive attribute of the process of cultural hunting!
The hunting fauna of our country is diverse. Its vast expanses are inhabited by waterfowl, marsh, upland, field and mountain birds. Hares and wild ungulates live in the forests – elk, wild boar, roe deer, deer.
Many amateurs give their leisure time to sport hunting, who bring not only prey from hunting, but also health, new impressions, and good mood. The taste of game has long been well known. However, the high quality and good taste of game dishes also depend on the correct preparation. The author gives methods of preparing dishes from the most common game at home and field conditions.
On our table comes the meat of game obtained by hunters-trappers and hunters-amateur. Game can be purchased in the Dary Prirody stores, where the meat of wild ungulates (elk, deer, wild boar, saiga, etc.) and fowl (ptarmigan, hazel grouse, black grouse, etc.) are sold. Quails and pheasants grown on special farms also go on sale.
It is often argued which is tastier – black grouse or wild duck, moose or wild boar? These disputes are pointless, since the taste of a dish depends on its preparation, and a dish made from one’s own prey always seems tastier than one from meat bought in a store. The meat of snipe, great snipe and woodcock is traditionally considered a delicacy. The meat of game birds of chicken breeds (quail, hazel grouse, partridge, pheasant, wood grouse, black grouse) has excellent taste. Hare meat is highly valued; no wonder the old chefs called the best piece of beef tenderloin “bunny”. Among wild ungulates, the meat of roe deer, deer and saiga should be distinguished by their taste.
Wild animals eat natural food and instinctively choose the most necessary and useful ones. Many plants contain nutrients that accumulate in the meat of wild animals. Game meat is high in calories, nutritious and has dietary properties. Wild animals and birds lead an active lifestyle, therefore their meat is quite dense and not particularly fatty. Before preparing dishes from such meat, it is recommended to keep it in the marinade, stuff with lard and use more fat.
Of course, game dishes can be prepared in the same way as poultry dishes. But it will hardly sound like praise if the chef is told that the hazel grouse he cooked tastes like chicken. Game dishes should have a specific bittersweet aftertaste. They add wild fruits and berries, sugar. However, it should be remembered that the taste of a dish is primarily determined by the quality of the meat and the correct cooking mode. Various spices and seasonings only add originality and flavor to the dish. Of course, directly on the hunt, in field conditions, cooking game dishes can be easier. The hunting appetite will replace any of the most sophisticated sauce. As a rule, it is on the hunt that men acquire their first culinary skills. A careful attitude towards prey, no matter how modest it may be, is an indispensable quality of a cultured hunter.