A keen shot and a professionally trained chef. Not many are better qualified to create a recipe for grouse than Lady Melissa Percy.

We also asked her for some tips on cooking this delectable bird.

Missy’s 12 glorious tips for cooking grouse

  • There’s no need to hang grouse, as it already has the perfect game flavour
  • The further into the season you get, the gamier the birds will be
  • For older grouse slow pot roasts and casseroles work best
  • It is important to clean the grouse out thoroughly as any remaining blood will cause the bird to taste bitter
  • With young grouse, take the breast off, season and sear in a hot pan for 2 minutes per side
  • Always rest your grouse for at least half of the cooking time, this lets the meat relax and allows the juices to go back into the centre
  • Use a deboning knife to remove the breast from the carcass, always ensure knives are sharp
  • Use the carcass to make a great stock base for your jus – simmer for three hours for the perfect flavour
  • There are 18 species of grouse in the world
  • The best accompaniments for grouse are: game chips, bread sauce, fried crumbs, rowan jelly, bleaberrie compote and Scottish skirlie.
  • Grouse is incredibly good for you as it is organic, low in fat and  cholesterol
  • When roasting a young grouse, smear melted butter over the breasts and place bacon on top, season and stuff the carcass with garlic and herbs to flavour. Roast in a hot oven for 15-20 mins, basting twice during cooking.

Recipe for pulled grouse salad

Serves 2

Ingredients 

– 1 grouse
– 1 clove garlic
– 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
– splash olive oil
– 300ml chicken stock
– Handful lardons (or 4 rashers streaky bacon snipped) cooked until crispy, Homemade croutons (can be gluten free)
– Toasted pinenuts
– Mixed salad leaves
– good teaspoonful chopped fresh tarragon
– 3 soft boiled quails eggs
– 6 raspberries (halved)
– Homemade salad dressing with a splash of raspberry vinegar added
– Carrot ribbons
– Shredded mange tout
– Pumpkin seeds

Method

Pound the garlic with the fennel seeds in a pestle & mortar adding a pinch of salt and a little olive oil to a paste Rub inside the grouse.

Brown the grouse all over, in a small oven proof casserole – Add stock and turn grouse breast side down – cover (place lid on) – bring to boil – in oven 140 for approx 1.5 hrs (slow pot roast) until very tender & pulls off the bone (Leave to cool in stock)

Take out and shred meat and carefully mix with the rest of the ingredients, drizzling some of the vinaigrette over.

Garnish with some micro herbs / cress.

Lady Melissa Percy with her dogs

Lady Melissa Percy is a keen shot and a professional cook. Credit: Arielle Shear