Fourteen shots fired and just two snipe in the bag — not a good ratio, but in my defence it was raining hard. Very hard. As I picked up the wet snipe I had he idea of soaking them overnight then grilling them and serving with salad.

Ingredients (for two)

• two snipe • half a bottle of white or rosé wine • juice of half a lemon • half a tbsp white wine vinegar • one tbsp soy sauce • three garlic cloves, chopped or crushed • a handful of fresh tarragon • salt and pepper • olive oil

1. Mix the wine, lemon juice, wine vinegar, soy sauce, garlic and tarragon in a saucepan. Season and bring to the boil. As soon as it boils remove from the heat and leave it for at least three hours to cool completely, then empty the contents into a bowl.

2. Meanwhile, pluck and draw the snipe and remove its head, neck and legs. Turn the carcase over in your hand, breast-side down and using a sharp pair of scissors, cut up both sides of the backbone to open it out (spatchcock). Place the snipe in the cold marinade then cover the bowl and leave it in the fridge for 24 hours.

3. Place some tinfoil on a grill pan. Dry off the snipe and place them breast upwards on the foil. Brush over some olive oil, give a good grind of salt and pepper and cook on a medium heat for around 15-18 minutes until the juices run clear when pricked with a knife. Serve with some salad.


Make sure the snipe are fully covered in the marinade — if not, add some more wine. The flavour of the overnight marinade permeates right through the meat — trust me, you will never have tasted anything like this before. Spatchcocking the snipe makes it flatter so it will cook evenly. Cooking on tinfoil retains the juices, allowing you to baste if necessary.