Thursday, 20 November 2008

On the 15th day of November my neighbours gave to me...

... one Chocolate Orange and a brace of pheasants for our tea.

*ends singing*

At 6pm Badger and I are taking said brace of pheasants down to the local pub where the lovely and eccentric landlord (who used to produce Thomas the Tank Engine) will give us a demonstration of how to make them eatable. For they are not, yet. They are just hanging by the front door just as they were when they arrived. Heads, feathers, etc.

This brings us to a dilemma. We happen to live somewhere that offers a plentiful supply of free meat most of the year round. The local farmers have said we can have rabbits for free, provided we do all the yukky bits for ourselves. 

Free range? *check*
Zero food miles? *check*
No carbon footprint? *check*
Low cholesterol? *check*
Cute snuffly noses and floppy ears? *check*

After much discussion we have concluded that if we aren't prepared to eat the local, free meat offered to us then we probably shouldn't eat meat at all. And, having been veggie and also done the almost-veggie-but-I-eat-fish thing, I don't want to give up meat again. We do eat veggie at least half the time, and we only buy free range meat, but that's as far as it goes.

Now, proper veggies I can respect. My little sis hasn't eaten animal bits for a long time and is very serious about it. Fishy-tarians I can also dig - there is something different about fishes, they don't have limbic systems and raise their young like other mammals... and we don't rear them in horrible battery farms. (Oh ... actually we do, but we pretend not to and can choose to buy fish responsibly).

But, it turns out that I might just be a dont-make-me-think-about-it-etarian. Which sounds to me like a synonym for 'hypocrite'. So, I searched YouTube for a video that might instruct me how to prepare a pheasant, in the hope that I might be de-sensitised by the time we go for our lesson this evening. And, OMG it's horrific. Badger and I are in pieces.

Not the blood and guts... that wasn't too bad actually.

No, much worse than that.

The video soundtrack is "You're beautiful" by James Blunt.

Some people are just twisted.


McBöbø said...

OMG, what a vicious sting in the tail. Could you not save the bunnies and eat free range Blunts instead?

Enjoy your lesson in advanced yokel skills.

Stray said...

I know Bobo - and I LOVE your suggestion that free range Blunts should be on the menu.

Badger is a hero - I bottled it (this time - I am working and helping with homework) and she went and did the deed all by herself! She's an advanced country-Badger now. It's official.

We have one pheasant in the freezer and one to be made into a pie tomorrow.

trousers said...

That is indeed horrific. I presume there's no option for subtitles if you turn the sound down, what with this being youtube. Then again, hearing the song you mention (I can't even bring myself to type the title) would be enough to make me feel like wanting to bludgeon some recently-departed edible animal, so maybe it has it's uses on that video...

trousers said...

Oh bugger, please excuse the extraneous apostrophe, it should be has its uses (unless I'm getting confused).

Misssy M said...

We get pheasants and other feathery things from our gamekeeper mate regularly and I have only one tip for you and that's shut the cat out whilst you are doing the necessary. They go mad! We didn't realise til we got our girls (now 2) but they were acting like lionesses and attacking the dead bird. It was funny at first but they kept running off with bits whilst growling.

Our old boy cat, who is pathetic when it comes to anything physical, did nothing.

JJ said...

Hmmm, I'm afraid I'm in the "dont-make-me-think-about-it-etarian... hypocrite" camp.

I have very strong (stomach) memories of pheasants being prepared by my granny and my dad... but I suspect you don't want to hear about them.

But Why? said...

I'm just appalled at the waste of legs, wings and carcass. All that bird for a couple of shallow-fried breasts?

Kahless said...

Nope, I am not viewing the link after your description!
I am feeling rather to squeamish at the mo! And no, my curiosity hasnt gotten the better of me!

I would be vegetarian if I liked vegetables, but unfortunately I dont do them.

sheepish said...

I agree, what about all the other bits of the bird? I'm sure Badger did a much better job.
As someone who has butchered everything from poultry to pigs including furry bunnies, I am of the "glad to know where it's come from and what a nice life it had" etarian.Hope you enjoy.

uphilldowndale said...

It brought back happy childhood memories of opening the pantry door to come face to face with pheasant or fluffy bunny waiting for the pot. I've a friend who aspires to make a crow pie for his colleagues, he already does a good line in 'game pies' that contain anything and everything, he won't disclose the recipe, for obvious reasons.

Stray said...

Sheepish - You have just reframed the whole deal for me. Thanks :)

We had an amazing pheasant and chestnut mushroom pie, a joint effort between the three of us. It was lovely!

Kahless - you don't like vegetables? *Does not compute* ... you're not secretly a 13-year-old boy are you?

trousers - it's a good point well made. Perhaps there's not even a need to bludgeon the animals? Maybe if we blasted a bit of Blunt down the rabbit hole the little critters would surrender?

Dr But Why? - you don't surprise me. I seem to remember you and Badger eating rabbit in the treehouse?

JJ - thanks for not sharing :)

Misssy M - the animals were completely obsessed. Dog and cats alike. And ruby had been staring at the hanging pheasants outside the door for days as well, trying to work out if she could possibly levitate herself high enough to reach them I suspect.

uhdd - wow, crow sounds ... adventurous! Yes, the trick is not to know too much about it I suspect. Mind you, it's easy to forget that we eat chicken-period on a daily basis ... boiled, fried and scrambled.

nmj said...

hey stray, i can barely touch raw fish (though i love fish), so i can't ever see me plucking a pheasant ('i'm not a pheasant plucker' just came into my mind, have to be careful of typos!); i have tasted pheasant once & i have to say i did enjoy it. however i think associations with james blunt will put me off it forever... btw you have introduced me to a new collective noun - a brace of pheasants. lovely.

PurpleSparkleBright said...

James Blunt? sick!!!