The Essence of Life

The Essence of Life

Friday, October 18, 2013

Of Wild Flushes and Wild Meals

Woodcocks on the way...

Yesterday Del and I went out bird hunting again. It was a fresh and moist morning and the fall colors were glowing in a particularly beautiful way. I love the burnt reds and coppers.

In the early part of the hunt we had a lot of walking, which should please Dr. March as he insists that I exercise daily, some false points and many wild flushes, mostly woodcock, but also one young and illegal whitetail buck with short spikes over its head. The buck was illegal because we had shotguns for the birds we were after and it is now bow season for deer, and because of the new antler restriction regulations based on Quality Deer Management principles that protect bucks until they have at least three points in one side.

After coming back to the car we drove around to another area and let out both Gina and Zap, and we went out in another long walk. Finally when we were no more than one hundred yards from the car the dogs started pointing woodcock one after another. We would have had a limit between the two of us if Del's auto-loading shotgun had not misfired twice and if we had found one of the birds I shot.

I think that Del knew all along where the birds were, but he is under orders of Dr. March to make me exercise and walk every inch of the Michigan north woods, or at least every inch of Grand Traverse, Benzie and Leelanau counties, before we can collect a couple three birds for dinner.

For a change we did not go out for lunch in respect of our respective diets.

For dinner I prepared the woodcock (beccaccine) skinned (poultry skin is bad for triglycerides) and cut in half, lightly browned over just a bid of lard, and then cooked with shallots and cipollini on a white wine and rosemary sauce. As contorni I had grilled eggplants (melanzana) white beans (fagionlini) salad. The wonderful dinner was washed down by a glass of I Tre Vescovi, and excellent Barbera d'Asti.

There may be more pleasurable things in life, but few can surpass good friends, hunting and a wild game dinner.

to become a meal!

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