Woodcock Medallions in Blackberry Marinade

You may think that a bird that feeds primarily on invertebrates would not make the most appetizing table fare and in many cases you would probably be right. However, this recipe is sure to please even the choosiest eaters. The rich, natural flavor this dish brings forth will take you right back to the crisp autumn morning you swung up your doublegun and connected with the prince of gamebirds. 

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After breasting and removing the legs, soak the meat overnight in a saltwater brine. This will pull a lot of the blood and gaminess out of the meat. Add salt generously. 

The next day, marinate the meat for at least 6 hours using the following:

·      2 c. raspberry vinaigrette dressing

·      ½ c. blackberry jelly

·      2 cloves minced garlic

·      a dash of liquid smoke 

Finally, sear the breasts and legs over high heat on the grill. It is very easy to overcook so be careful- 1 minute per side should be fine.

You will find the birds to be full of a mild earthy flavor that resonates in smoke. These will make an excellent appetizer or pair well with a breast of grouse.