Bourbon Buffalo Pheasant

Wow, talk about a delicious recipe! A co-worker gave me the following recipe and it turns out to be just as good with sage grouse as it is with pheasant.

The light colored strips are Pheasant and the dark strips are Sage Grouse.

I used Jim Bean Devil’s Cut for my bourbon and my ranch dressing was Chiz’s, locally made and our favorite. The strips were fried in extra virgin olive oil.

Bourbon Buffalo Pheasant Strips

4 to 5 pheasant breasts

For bourbon sauce
1 yellow onion
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup bourbon
2/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar

For seasoned flour
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Dice up half a yellow onion. Place onion and 2 tablespoons butter in a saute pan and cook over medium-high heat until onions become translucent (about 3 minutes).

Add 1/4 cup of bourbon and be careful with the flame. Add 1/3 cup of brown sugar and cook on low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Add 2/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce and simmer on low heat for a few minutes.

Note – I added the hot sauce before the bourbon to cool the pan.

Check 4 or 5 pheasant breasts for shot. Cut breasts into strips (about 5 pre breast).

Dredge the strips in seasoned flour: Shake any excess flour off the strips and fry in 360-degree oil until golden brown. Toss the strips with bourbon sauce and enjoy with ranch or bleu cheese dressing for dipping.

 

 

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Family Outdoor Festival 2017

Doc and Mia on point

A winter advisory greeted participants of this year’s Family Outdoor Festival, with rain until about 10:00 a.m. then turning to snow. The afternoon hunts were cancelled due to bad weather.

Doc on point as a junior hunter and mentor move in to flush

I ran Doc and Mia for two junior hunters. We had a good hunt with both hunmters bagging two birds apiece. Mia decided that she wasn’t going to honor Doc after his second retrieve, and began stealing his birds.

Doc and Mia with the bird between them, as a junior hunter moves in to flush.

Doc did make one impressive blind retrieve. The junior hunter flushed the pheasant and hit it hard enough to knock out a few feathers, but not slow it down. The bird flew over the ridge we were hunting with both Doc and Mia in pursuit.

Doc and Mia on point, which will be Doc’s blind retrieve.

When neither dog returned after awhile, I climbed the hill to look for them. Mia came back but no Doc. I neared the crest of the ridge when Doc came over it with the bird in mouth.

Doc on point

Doc making a nice retrieve

Later, one of the hunters winged a pheasant and it gave both Doc and Mia a merry chase through the brush. From time to time they lost the bird and had to track, but eventually they ran it down and retrieved it. It was poor form but humorous to see both dogs retrieving the bird, Doc with the head and Mia with the tail.

Mia on point

Our hunt ended, and I was leaving when an officer asked if I’d handle the dogs for a junior hunter who had not gotten a chance to hunt. I agreed and after new birds were planted, we headed out for another hunt.

Mia retrieving a pheasant

The guys did very well and the junior hunter limited out, although Mia continued stealing Doc’s retrieves so that’s something we’ll have to work on.

Mia retrieving a pheasant

Doc and Mia made a big impression on both the mentors and Fish and Game officers. Specifically, they loved the pace that Spinone hunt, the way they work the bird’s scent before going on point, and as one officer told me, “these dogs are very thorough, when they hunt an area, you know they didn’t miss a bird.”

Mia follows Doc on a retrieve

A blustery bird hunt

Mia on point

Both wind speed and temperatures were in the 30’s for our pheasant hunt last Monday and perhaps invigorated by the cold, Mia brought her A-game.

Mia exits the slew with the pheasants

Mia retrieves the pheasant

While hunting cattails near where I had parked, Mia went on point but lost the scent in the heavy wind. She continued working the cattails and kicked up a nice rooster. I dropped the bird in the slough and it took Mia awhile to find it, but she did and made a nice retrieve.

Mia refuses to come off point, but no birds

We continued hunting and Mia went on point again. I searched the brush and found nothing, but she refused to come off her point. It took awhile before I was able to convince her that there was no bird, and after doing her own search just to make sure, we moved on. It must have been a real hot spot.

Mia on point

Mia quartering nicely with the wind to our back

Hunting with the wind to our backs, we put up two hen pheasants and a rooster. By the time I put a bead on the rooster, it was flying away with a 30 mile-per-hour tail wind, so I let it go.

Mia on point in a grove of Russian Olive trees

We then hunted a grove of Russian Olive trees and put up two more roosters, but the trees were too thick to afford a shot.

muddy Mia and her pheasant