Grouse with glazed figs, heritage carrots and Chocolate Porter sauce

  • medium
  • 4
  • 2 hours 50 minutes
Not yet rated

Shay Cooper's dazzling grouse with figs recipe is a feast of autumnal delights, pairing the rich game bird with sweet caramelised figs, beautifully glazed heritage carrots and a velvety Chocolate Porter sauce.

First published in 2015







Caramelised figs

  • 2 figs, large and ripe
  • 50g of caster sugar

Heritage carrots

Game chips

  • 1 baking potato, large, peeled in water
  • 1.5l vegetable oil, for frying
  • salt, for seasoning


  • Deep fat fryer
  • Fine chinois
  • Mandoline with ridged blade


Begin by preparing the sauce. Add the alcohols and aromatics to a pan and reduce until almost dry. Stir in the veal jus, reduce to a sauce consistency and pass through a fine chinois
Add salt and the chocolate, stir until smooth and season with sherry vinegar to taste. Set aside until ready to serve
To prepare the grouse, clean the birds thoroughly, removing any remaining feathers and all of the offal (you can reserve the hearts and livers for other dishes). French trim the wings and remove the legs. Set the crown to one side
Clean the legs, leaving only one of the claws for presentation. Place the legs into a pan of duck fat with the garlic, thyme and juniper, place on the stove and cook over a gentle heat for 1 hour until tender
To prepare the carrots, peel each carrot and cut into elegant shapes. Place in a pan, cover with water and salt and boil until tender. Drain and set aside until ready to serve
For the game chips, remove the potato from the water and push across the ridged mandoline blade
For the next slice, turn the sliced face of the potato 45 degrees before slicing the potato again - this will create a criss-cross pattern on the potato slices. Repeat until you have used the remaining potato
Leave the potato slices under cold running water for 1-2 minutes to remove excess starch
Heat the oil to 180°C in a deep fryer
  • 1.5l vegetable oil, for frying
Fry the crisps until golden brown. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on a piece of kitchen towel. Season with salt and set aside until ready to serve
Preheat the oven to 190°C/gas mark 5
Colour the grouse crowns in a pan until evenly coloured and golden brown. Remove the pan from the heat and place on a tray. Cook in the oven for 6-8 minutes, depending on the size of the birds
Remove from the oven and allow the birds to rest for 6 minutes. Turn the oven down to 180°C/gas mark 4
Cut each fig in half and toss with caster sugar to coat. Caramelise with a blowtorch, then place in the oven for 2 minutes, until warm
  • 2 figs, large and ripe
  • 50g of caster sugar
To finish the carrots, make a glaze in a pan with the butter and water. Reheat the carrots in the glaze, then season with salt and pepper
Reheat the Chocolate Porter sauce on the stove until warmed through
Carve the rested grouse breasts from the crowns. Mix together the crust ingredients in a bowl, brush the top of each breast with a little sauce then lightly press the brushed breasts into the crust to create an even coating
Arrange onto serving plates alongside the confit legs, glazed carrots and caramelised figs. Grate a little dark chocolate over each dish to finish, then garnish with carrot tops. Serve the Chocolate Porter sauce in a jug to spoon over at the table
First published in 2015

One of England’s up-and-coming, ultra-talented chefs with Michelin pedigree, Shay Cooper started cooking as a commis chef in 1997, before he was even out of school.

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