The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Summer rabbit casserole recipe for the slow cooker/crock pot

Posted in Pheasant and Game | 5 comments

Summer rabbit casserole recipe for the slow cooker/crock pot

A few years ago Danny and I went to stay in the Cinque Terra in Italy. This is in Liguria and the five towns are seaside or clinging to hillside near the coast. This is a great region for walking and farming. We’d watch the walkers leave as we enjoyed our breakfast and return when we were lifting the first glass of the evening. We were staying in a small town called Monte Rosso. A beautiful old fashioned seaside place with a truly sleepy feel. Despite this it was packed with good restaurants and shops selling foodie delights. We’d guzzle...

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Rabbit and chorizo casserole recipe. Cooked slowly in the slow cooker/crock pot.

Posted in Pheasant and Game | 7 comments

Rabbit and chorizo casserole recipe. Cooked slowly in the slow cooker/crock pot.

  I discovered recently that one of our local butchers sells rabbits that are shot on the local studs. They are cheap too – at £5.00 a pair. Apart from pigeon this probably the cheapest, happy meat that you can buy in the UK. We used to eat a lot of rabbit when I was growing up. A traditional rabbit stew with vegetables. Then I didn’t eat rabbit for years and I know the reason why. Skinned rabbit looks to me a bit like a small, skinned dog or cat. Over the past year or so, I’ve put aside this silly nonsense and discovered the delights...

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Mixed game casserole with shitake mushrooms recipe. For the slow cooker.

Posted in Pheasant and Game | 2 comments

Mixed game casserole with shitake mushrooms recipe. For the slow cooker.

  The freezer bit of our indoor fridge freezer has finally died. RIP you temperamental old geezer. You have no idea of the heartache that you have caused us over the years. The fridge is still working, thank goodness and we have a small backup freezer in the barn. So I’ve been cooking up things that used to be in the defunct freezer. Yesterday it was mixed game casserole. The essential ingredient for this, apart from the game element, are the shitake mushrooms. If you can’t get fresh ones use dried ones (10% of the fresh weight) soak and...

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Slow cooker chef: Steak, venison and duck au vin recipe

Posted in Beef and Steak and Veal, Duck Goose and Turkey, Pheasant and Game | 3 comments

Slow cooker chef: Steak, venison and duck au vin recipe

  Our fridge freezer has been a bit of a trial for quite a few years now. It has problems coping with external high and low temperatures and generally performs best in the spring or autumn. So it was a bit of a surprise when we found the larder floor covered in dark water. We both assumed that the other had kicked the bacon curing pot. The next day I investigated further and noticed red liquid dripping out of the freezer door. This is no super duper frost free machine. It has to be manually defrosted. If we forget to do this, the ice...

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Dukes Teal au Vin or Tippled Teal in Cider recipe. Contributed by Duncan Lang

Posted in Duck Goose and Turkey, Pheasant and Game | 2 comments

Dukes Teal au Vin or Tippled Teal in Cider recipe. Contributed by Duncan Lang

  Photo: Copyright Hanna Zabielska Teal – wild duck – is a lot gamier than ordinary duck and far more compact. We occasionally find one on offer at Waitrose and pop it into the freezer for a special occasion. So I was delighted when Duncan sent me this recipe.  “I first cooked it about six years ago and it was yummy I was then asked by a friend for ideas on how to cook Teal for Valentines evening, so I gave him this recipe.” Duncan explained. “He did the cider variation and it met with great success by all accounts. I decided that...

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Slow cooker chef: warming winter mixed game casserole recipe

Posted in Pheasant and Game | 7 comments

Slow cooker chef: warming winter mixed game casserole recipe

Unless you have a shotgun and access to rough shooting, game can be a very expensive treat in the UK. A small pack of mixed game from Waitrose will set you back around a fiver. So when Danny spotted two bags of mixed game marked down to £1.25 each he grabbed them with a chortle. “Oh dear,” I secretly thought, “This meat needs to be cooked immediately and I haven’t got the right vegetables for a game casserole.” But of course I had dehydrated ones – it’s difficult to switch on to this new source of bounty having just cooked with...

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The slow cooker chef: Venison and shin of beef casserole recipe

Posted in Beef and Steak and Veal, Pheasant and Game | 3 comments

The slow cooker chef: Venison and shin of beef casserole recipe

  This is a really easy recipe that I made last week. I forgot to take a picture of the dish so have put up this photograph as it includes a brass deer that belonged to my mother as a child. I love eating venison but it’s so expensive here in the UK. We buy it when it’s marked down in price and stash it in the freezer for game pies and casseroles. Shin of beef is delicious too - slowly simmered for 8-10 hours the gristly meat transforms into a melt in the mouth treat. Combine the two for a casserole that is deeply satisfying on a chilly...

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Rabbit mushroom and tarragon casserole recipe

Posted in Pheasant and Game | 8 comments

Rabbit mushroom and tarragon casserole recipe

  Finding myself with 600g of diced wild rabbit and no pheasant to go into a game casserole, I decided to glide onto the internet for inspiration and found this delicious recipe on We Are Never Full. Unfortunately I didn’t have some essential ingredients such as bacon so I made my own version using the tarragon, mushrooms, white wine and cream as a starting point. The slow cooker was busy cooking the shin of beef disguised as a pheasant so I cooked the rabbit very slowly on the stove top. It took over three hours and was wonderful – the...

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