Pan Fried Grouse with Blackberries and Blackberry Dressing by Artisan Food Trail

This recipe is by Lisa and Graham at The Artisan Food Trail

Ingredients (serves: 1 grouse pp)

  • grouse (1 grouse per person)
  • blackberries
  • small sprig of thyme
  • cider vinegar plus some water
  • caster sugar
  • lambs lettuce
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


How to prepare the grouse

Remove the breasts from the grouse. To do this you first need to remove the legs by cutting through the joint close to the ribcage. Then take a very sharp small knife and cut parallel with the breast bone on one side first, making quick light cuts keeping as close to the bone as possible to release the meat – then repeat with the second side. The breasts will come away easily.

To make the dressing

This a very much an adhoc recipe, hence no specific quantities. In a small saucepan add a splash of cider vinegar and some water, chuck in a handful of blackberries along with the thyme and simmer until the fruit is soft and breaking up.
Pour the juice and fruit into a jug through a sieve.
Squash and rub all the juice and pulp from the berries through the sieve and mix the puree into the juice. Add some caster sugar to taste – this is where you’ll need to be a judge of the balance of sweet and sour. If it needs more sourness add a drop more vinegar.
Return the juice to the saucepan and simmer until the volume of the liquid has halved and become syrupy in consistency. Set aside to cool.

Note: We made our own fruit vinegar reduction as we didn’t have any of our producers’ own to hand. We recommend you take a look at Agnes Rose and Womersley Fruit & Herb Vinegars.

To cook the grouse

In a frying pan, heat a little oil. When the pan is really hot place the grouse breasts skinned side down and cook for 2 minutes, turn them over and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the grouse breasts to rest for another 2 minutes before slicing.

Assemble the salad (for 2)

Put some lambs lettuce on to serving dishes, scatter with a few blackberries. Place the sliced grouse breast on top, season with salt and pepper and drizzle over the dressing. If you want to make the salad more substantial the addition of sautéed potatoes will make it more hearty