The Venerable Popper. This little appetizer is a Labor Day tradition — it’s what you do with the first doves of the year, a way to celebrate the return of hunting season.
Quick and Easy
Blackened fish is so 1980s, I know, but I still love it. Here I use catfish, a Cajun staple, but you can blacken any fish sturdy enough for this ferocious cooking process. Blackened redfish is the classic example. Alongside the fish is Cajun succotash, called maque choux.
Growing up in New Jersey, this classic Italian-American pasta dish was one of my favorites: Linguini or spaghetti with white clam sauce. Clams, herbs, olive oil and lotsa garlic! I make this normally with West Coast littleneck clams, but lots of different clams will work.
It is time to harvest nettles here in NorCal, and the first thing I make with them each year is a lurid green nettle pesto to put on pasta or mix into rice or spread on bread.
OK, I’ll admit it: I like Sad Panda’s orange chicken. The combination of crispy, sweet, spicy and tart is more or less crack cocaine to humans, and I am not immune. Here’s my version of that recipe, done with pheasant, grouse, quail, turkey or partridge.
Wapato, arrowhead, katniss, duck potato. This is a plant of a hundred names. All translate into fantastic. This is American’s premier starchy tuber (actually a corm) can be stewed, boiled and mashed or fried – eat it any way you would a potato. And like the potato, arrowhead chips are my favorite way to eat wapato.
A quick, easy and tasty way to enjoy the fruits of your waterfowl hunt. Deviled duck hearts are a British thing, and they’re hearts, dusted in flour seasoned with mustard and cayenne, cooked quickly and served with a watercress salad. A damn good appetizer or snack.
If you like the classic Chinese dish kung pao chicken, you’ll love kung pao venison. This is a pretty authentic Chinese version of the dish, which isn’t as sweet as the typical steam-table Chinese stuff you get at Sad Panda.