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#3351243 - 09/07/13 10:44 PM Grilled Doves "a La Mancha"
TAFKAP
14 Point


Registered: 11/06/09
Posts: 9514
Loc: Memphis

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Poser linked Hank Shaw's dove recipes last year, and I had a hard time getting them cooked. So this year, I decided to really go after it. On opening day, I breasted all but (4) birds out. I decided to try plucking them out to see how difficult it would be. Not terrible, but certainly not a simple alternative to the tried & true breasting out of the meat. So I put them on ice, then used my dorm fridge to dry age them for 6 days @ 49 degrees.


The next day, I limited out very quickly, so rather than breasting out all my birds, I just threw them in the cooler, feathers and all. Slammed all 15 of them up in the fridge to dry age....guts, feathers, & all. Turns out, the skewer rig isn't necessary. A normal dove's head is just big enough to fit through the slats of my dorm fridge rack. Those are the previous day's breasts in there brining. They are now de-boned, and the bones will become dove stock very soon.


So today, I was going to cook this recipe. http://honest-food.net/wild-game/dove-pigeon-recipes/grilled-doves-a-la-mancha/ It looked REALLY good, but part of me hoped it wasn't going to turn out well. Messing with the whole birds is really time consuming and is much messier than just breasting them out. Getting them to this point wasn't easy to do for the first time. The worst part was trying to reach in and make sure the lungs were out.


BEST. DOVE RECIPE. EVER. These things were spectacular. Gnawing on a tiny little dove leg, eating the skin behind the shoulder, and just the flavor....WOW. IT makes you want to find the guy that invented poppers and just slap the crap out of him. As much of a pain (and stink) as it is gutting a week old dead bird, this stuff was incredibly good. I'm not sure how much the dry aging helped, but there aren't enough adjectives for how good this was.


You must try it!
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#3351342 - 09/08/13 07:07 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: TAFKAP]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12724
Loc: Tennessee

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#3351420 - 09/08/13 08:18 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: Poser]
mike243
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Looks great.my next knife will be a bird knife.it has a wire hook to reach in & pull the guts out.my fingers are too big for small birds
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#3351431 - 09/08/13 08:39 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: mike243]
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Bambi Killa
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Looks great man.
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#3351494 - 09/08/13 09:31 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: mike243]
TAFKAP
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Registered: 11/06/09
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Loc: Memphis

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 Originally Posted By: mike243
Looks great.my next knife will be a bird knife.it has a wire hook to reach in & pull the guts out.my fingers are too big for small birds


It wasn't terribly difficult.....just a bit of a challenge after never having done it before. Honestly, I think a specialty tool will be useless. I had an apple corer (90 degree blade with a serrated edge) to help scoop out the lungs, but it didn't do much good or bad.
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#3352029 - 09/08/13 08:02 PM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: TAFKAP]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12724
Loc: Tennessee

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This is the next level of game cooking. Funny thing is, it is simply a return to the way people cooked for generations until the "popper" generation of hunters came along in the last 50 years.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3352312 - 09/08/13 11:31 PM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: Poser]
TAFKAP
14 Point


Registered: 11/06/09
Posts: 9514
Loc: Memphis

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We did it again tonight. This time, with duck fat.

The Hank Shaw roulades were pretty good, as well. But the grilled whole dove remains my absolute favorite.
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#3353544 - 09/10/13 12:29 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: TAFKAP]
BamaProud
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Registered: 04/03/11
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Looks great! Never tried dry aging them.

I've probably plucked several thousand doves. That was the only way we did it up until about 10 years ago. A good pair of shears instead of a knife helps breaking them down, and a water hose with a sprayer attachment helps cleaning out the cavity. Plucking doves(or any bird) is definitely an outdoors chore.

We used to pluck a lot of them in the boat the next day while fishing, the drive back to the dock made cleaning up the feathers a breeze (no pun intended) \:\)

The adorable red-head is lil-BamaProud around 1980
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#3353689 - 09/10/13 07:44 AM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: BamaProud]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12724
Loc: Tennessee

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BamaProud,

Why do you think that this practice has fallen out of favor in recent years?
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3354116 - 09/10/13 02:53 PM Re: Grilled Doves "a La Mancha" [Re: Poser]
TAFKAP
14 Point


Registered: 11/06/09
Posts: 9514
Loc: Memphis

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 Originally Posted By: Poser
BamaProud,

Why do you think that this practice has fallen out of favor in recent years?



People don't like feathers in their poppers.

I average a little less than 10 mins/bird. Even when I'm meticulous, it takes less than 2 mins to breast out a bird. That's probably the biggest issue.....sheer amount of time.
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Everything important in life was learned from Mary Jo Kopechne.

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