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Braised Chukars Smothered In Cabbage

4 slc Bacon, dried (or equivalent of salt pork)
1/4 lb Prosciutto or other ham, diced
1 med Onion, diced
2 x Carrots, sliced thin
1/2 tsp Crushed rosemary
1/4 tsp Tarragon
2 x Bay leaves
Salt & pepper
1 lrg Head of cabbage, quartered
3 x Chukars, dressed, each stuffed with a small onion stuck with a clove, and then trussed
1 cup Game bird or chicken stock
1/2 cup White wine


Game birds have been cooked with cabbage for a very long time... this dish is a composite from an eighteenth century recipe.. It is recommended for an old rooster whose tenderness may be suspect.

In the casserole you expect to use, try out ( render ) the bacon until you accumulate some fat, then add the prosciutto and cook until both begin to brown.

Add the onion and carrots and cook 2 to 3 minutes, then add the herbs and the salt and pepper.

In a kettleful of boiling, salted water blanch the cabbage sections for 5 minutes. Drain and dismantle one quarter to make a bed of its leaves on top of the vegetables, herbs, etc.

Lay in the trussed birds, fit in the remaining three cabbage sections, and pour in the stock and the wine.

Bring to the boil, then simmer, covered, for 1 to 1-1/2 hours.

Note: You can add livers to this dish: saute 4 to 5 chicken livers with the onion and carrots, then when the livers have lost their pinkness, smash and stir them into the bacon, ham, and vegetables before you lay in the cabbage leaves.


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