bush meat bbq

Yesterday I held my annual BBQ. This year’s menu was as follows:

Aperitif
Pisco Sour

Starters
Fois Gras with Honey and Sauternes Jelly
John The Baptist Locust Stir Fry
Slow Roast Pork with Chinese Five-Spice Crackling

Mains
Bush Meat Tasting Menu
Zebra
Crocodile
Wildebeest
Bison
Kudu


A Kudu, yesterday.

Beef
Brazilian Picanha
Brazilian Fillet Mignon
Scottish Aberdeen Angus Rib-Eye

Baby Leaf Salad w/French Laundry Staff Dressing
New Potatoes in Parsley Butter

Deserts
Rhubarb and Ginger Cheesecake with Syrup
Pear and Chocolate Pie
Lemon Sabayon-Pine Nut Tart with Honeyed Mascarpone Cream
Bacon & Egg Ice Cream with Maple Syrup

All very nice too, except for the egg & bacon ice cream, which I forgot to remove from the freezer, and thus remains untasted and untested. While the safari selection of meats proved popular, most controversy was reserved for the Locust stir-fry, which polarised opinion like no other dish. These crunchy creatures were cooked in a little sesame oil with spring onion, diced green pepper, dates, orange juice and honey. Quite delicious, in my opinion, although they do take a fair bit of chewing.

I obtained my locusts (and the other unusual meats) from Osgrow, an excellent Bristol-based exotic meat consortium. They deliver anywhere in the UK, and are recommended. Most of the meat came from South Africa, but I like to think they could be sourcing their produce from Bristol Zoo, sneaking into the compound after hours armed with little more than a crossbow and a hunter’s cunning, stalking and slaying their prey to order before the zookeepers turn up for morning feed.

On the downside, one unfortunate side-affect of all this recent culinary experimentation is that people have started to view anything I make with great suspicion. At one point I handed someone a small jug of salad dressing, and they responded by looking at me with trepidation and asking what it contained, as if otter urine or breast milk were probable constituents.

Hmmm. Otter urine. I wonder if you can buy that online…

27 Comments

  1. The locusts look excellent. Actually, the whole menu is pretty impressive. I presume the annual barbecue is an invitation-only affair. Perhaps on this exact weekend next year I’ll triangulate your location using your panoramic photograph and arrive unannounced. Knowing my luck I’ll arrive just as the last baobab-sap granita is finished, leaving only several untouched jugs of Pims and otter urine. Nevermind.

  2. Your beef photo: Excuse me for having a one-track mind, but are you sure the middle cut isn’t, in fact, “pork”?

  3. No, my pork is much bigger than that, 6.5 kilos of flesh and bone.

  4. Hate to think how much it must have cost… But it sounds like you and your guests had a great time so hang the expense. Certainly makes my weekend’s culinary experiment seem tame by comparison. (Will blog it after repeating—at least once—as there are a few tweaks needed to get it just right.)

  5. What did you make? Or is it a secret?

    As far as cost goes, a 5am trip to Smithfields meat market can save you 70-80% off the supermarket price. Things become much more affordable.

  6. This is one of those moments I feel my decision to turn veggie was entirely vindicated. Did you see that a company near Cheltenham is apparently now producing the Scotch Ostrich Egg commercially? You should sue ‘em for nicking your ideas.

  7. Now thats what am talking about!

  8. I love Pisco Sour, and your menu looks fantastic, I’m jealous.

  9. Woo. Thanks, Mr YS.

    I was taught how to make Pisco Sour in Chile, so I’m hoping my version is reasonably authentic.

  10. I had some plums that needed using up, but only six small ones, which was a bit awkward, not being enough for a nice pie or whatever. So instead I made a whisky and plum syrup with them and poached some pears in it. The flavours were lovely but I’ll need to try it again to get the consistency just right.

  11. Mmm. Sounds yummy. Nice mix of sweet and sour.

  12. It was. Plus the syrop turned a lovely rich ruby colour. I’m just glad I remembered to make a note of how much of everything I was using. I can’t remember what kind of plums they were, but I doubt that would make a huge difference if I used a different variety. Served it with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream, which finished it off very well. Will do it again soon with riper pears and perhaps a bit more sugar…

  13. I told my sister the other day about blogjam and how it approaches food. She asked me if the guy “behind the blog” was really fat.
    I said: I don’t think fraser eats all of it.
    But then I realized that I really don’t know.
    So
    What do you do with all the food and are you really fat?

  14. Catchy post title, by the way.
    “Bush meets Bbq – politicians in the fry!”

  15. Charming.

    I don’t eat it all – at the weekend I cooked for about 18 people. And I’m a little overweight, but it’s not life-threatening. Yet.

  16. What does zebra taste like?

  17. I thought it would taste like horse, but it was more similar to beef, although perhaps a little sweeter. The biggest surprise was the crocodile, which to my mind had the texture of fish but tasted like turkey.

  18. you are, once again, an inspiration to men with fires everywhere. Funnily I bloggd John the Baptist stirfry a few weeks ago. I shall now try it and watch my fussy eatting friends squirm, and hopefully rethink their dull ways.

  19. Can you copyright a food creation?
    Well you must be able to because the BBC food site always has a footnote which reads “Recipes are copyright of their respective owners.”.

  20. Can I copyright my whisky-plum-pears under a creative commons licence?

  21. By the way, you CAN probably buy otter urine from a site called PredatorPee. Although the Wild Butterfly Urine seems interesting as well…
    I would link you to it, but my 16 yr old isn’t here….

  22. I can provide otter urine – I normally convert lager to this byproduct if your intrested in a sample just ask…

  23. Loving this site mate, been watching for a while now keeps me amused at work.

    The BBQ looks great!!!! Though not sure about the John The Baptist’s.

    PS is your moustache really that big?

  24. BBQ meat, hard to beat. But I have to say that any adventure into BBQ land is not complete without the perfect foodie aperitif… a bit of homemade Biltong.

  25. Yes. Biltong. Very nice stuff that.

  26. it is wrong to kill animals just for food soon we will hav no animals on earth!!!

  27. Daniel M. I suggest you get back to hugging your trees. People have been killing animals just for food for thousands of years and they haven’t disappeared yet. It’s commonly known as the food chain. If you want to make a noise, try targetting those who kill for profit – just think “ivory poacher”.

    Incidentily, very impressed with the menu! I’ve done a selection of your dishes myself, but to do all of those on one day? I take my hat off to you sir!