Wonderful Waterfowl: Tips For Cooking Your Wild Game After The Big Hunt

Posted on: 6 December 2022

If you enjoy waterfowl hunting for recreation, you already know how exciting it is to bag some game to take home and prepare for your family to celebrate your successful hunt. In fact, learning how to prepare your wild game and finding great recipes to try may be the best part of hunting. You can often substitute wild waterfowl in recipes you would use for domestic birds such as turkey and chicken with great results.                    

Grilling wild waterfowl     

A great piece of grilled waterfowl will be tender, juicy, and flavorful on the inside with skin that is crisp and golden. Being careful not to overcook waterfowl is important and should always be avoided. Always use a good brine prior to grilling and cook over high heat to maintain a good sear and keep the meat moist inside.  

If you like marinading meats, choose a marinade that is not overpowering to maintain the delicate taste of the waterfowl. Good options are mild sweet and sour marinades or simple garlic, oil, and balsamic vinegar marinades.  

 Roasting tips for waterfowl 

You can roast waterfowl whole as you would a whole turkey or chicken but will need to take some extra precautions to keep your waterfowl from becoming too greasy or drying out. Since duck is naturally greasier than domestic poultry, avoid rubbing the skin with butter or oil prior to roasting and poke holes throughout the skin with a fork. The natural oils in the skin will give the waterfowl a nice color and a crispy texture.  

For flavor enhancement, add a few gloves of fresh garlic, lemon halves, and a whole onion to the inside of the bird prior to roasting. This not only smells great as it is cooking but adds a delightful taste to the meat.  

What to serve with waterfowl  

Wild rice will complement roasted or grilled waterfowl well and can be served alongside the meat to create an attractive meal. Steamed vegetables or a tossed salad make nice companion dishes for waterfowl and rice. You can also cook potatoes and carrots in the pan when roasting waterfowl to create a complete dinner with ease. 

Cooking with waterfowl can add interest and a new flavor dimension to mealtimes with your family. Many side dishes are a perfect fit for grilled, roasted, or fried waterfowl. Waterfowl also makes a perfect substitute for any recipe that calls for chicken or turkey and can enhance the flavor of your favorite dishes served for everyday meals or special occasions.  

For more information on wild game recipes, contact a professional near you.