Last Saturday I took part in a fun annual tradition of the Pass Christian Yacht Club: the post-carnival pheasant shoot.
Held at the scenic Taylor Creek Shooting Preserve in Theodore, AL, it was a classic continental shoot, with twenty stalls wrapped around a tower near a picturesque pond. Retrieving dogs were spaced roughly every other stand (lots of dogs!), and neither they nor their guides could have been more attentive. A red beans and rice lunch followed, and by the time we had finished eating, a 150+ birds had already been cleaned and bagged. The efficiently organized day definitely served as a relaxing chaser to the prior week’s Mardi Gras frenzy. I look forward to it becoming one of my own annual traditions.
I took home a few pheasants and made use of the recipe below, but shooters also had the option of donating their game to the Pass Christian Yacht Club for a wild game-theme dinner there this Saturday night. And, fun fact: theirs is the oldest yacht club in the county.
3 tablespoons of butter
Salt and pepper to taste
2 lemons, halved
1 tablespoon of rosemary
1 apple, sliced
1 teaspoon of cloves
8 slices of bacon
Rub the birds with salt and pepper to taste, then brown in two tablespoons of butter in a large skillet.
Remove browned birds.
Squeeze the quartered lemons inside the pheasants, then coat with rosemary.
Place squeezed lemons inside the birds.
Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the skillet, stir in cloves, and brown the apple slices.
Remove browned apples from the skillet, and stuff as many apple slices as you can inside the birds.
Wrap each bird in two slices of bacon. Fasten with a toothpick if necessary.
Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes.