I ate roadkill today

I’ve been meaning to do this for a while, but the opportunity and convenience seldom coincide - today though, they did.

I was driving home from an afternoon rehearsal for a Christmas variety show and there was a pigeon in the middle of the road - dead, with feathers scattered everywhere, but intact and not crushed under wheels or anything.

I stopped and picked it up into a carrier bag to take home - it had obviously only just been killed, as it was still warm and limp.

It was a young bird and not enormously plump - I just plucked and filleted out the breast - not a bad little morsel of meat, which I sliced thinly, floured and quickly fried, then finished off with a splash of red wine. It was delicious.

Nice, you now stand a better chance of surviving the apocalypse than 90% of the populace.

You know, I’ve read through your website and thoroughly enjoyed all your foodie articles, but in the back of my mind I’ve always had a little doubt.

That’s gone however. Now I truly believe you live up to your username. :smiley:

Just what I was going to post!

I keep seeing these dead deer by the road…

We get dead deer around here a bit too - apparently they’re one of the trickier roadkill items to deal with, because their bulk keeps their core temperature high for too long - and they tend to spoil quickly.

But as I say, it’s rare for opportunity and convenience to coincide - nearly every time I see roadkill in fresh and decent condition, it’s either impractical to stop and safely retrieve them, or else I’ll be on my way out somewhere for the day and there would be no way to collect the item and keep it fresh until I return home.

That’s exactly how I explained it to my neighbor when I called him to tell him he could have that dead 'possum that was in front of my house on the road. It had just been run over and I didn’t have time to deal with it that day. He politely declined my offer, the ingrate! :smiley:

And just about every active poster on the SDMB. :smiley:

We did something like this for… oh, about two years.

The RCMP in the town we lived in had a list of people to call when they got called to an accident involving a large animal (moose, elk, deer… mostly deer), whoever got there first got the meat, and my Dad’s friend was on the list. Well my Dad had a truck. So friend would get the call, would call my Dad and they would go out to get the deer take it back to wherever and butcher it and split between them. It’s perfectly fine to eat, just have to cut away anything ruined by the accident and the rest is good.

I saw a freshly dead, plump pheasant in the middle of the road driving back from Cornwall this afternoon. It did occur to me to go back and get it, but I wouldn’t have a clue how to pluck and gut the bastard. How did you learn?

I just worked it out, based on experience of bird anatomy from having eaten many a chicken.

In fact, the other day, I wanted to buy some chicken breasts for a curry, but the price was the same in Tesco for a pair of chicken breasts as it was for a whole chicken - so I bought the chicken and filletted out the breasts with a small sharp knife (the rest of the chicken is now in my freezer - I’ll probably cook it with breast implants made of sausagemeat or something.

I’ve heard of some people cutting out the whole front of the pigeon’s ribcage with strong scissors, then removing the skin and feathers together before taking the meat off the bone, but that seemed like a lot of work.

Plucking the breast was incredibly quick and simple - just grab tufts of feathers and pull them out very easily and cleanly.
Then I washed the feathers off my hands, slit the breast skin and cut vertically down alongside of the breastbone, pulling the meat away from it as I went - once you’ve cut almost all the way down, it’s easy to work out which bits you need to cut to free the fillet for removal.

For a larger bird like a pheasant, I might be tempted to pluck and draw it, as there is worthwhile meat in other places besides the breast - that’s not something I’ve ever attempted before, but how hard can it be? I guess spatchcocking it might be the easiest way to ensure all the guts are out.

It’s very intuitive once you get started. Skip plucking (pain) and skin it. Remove head, feet, and wings. A pair of garden pruners works better than a blade for this. Cut open the “abdomen” and get all the guts out - the lungs sometimes stick in there, so use a fork if you need to. Rinse.

No need to spatchcock for gutting and cleaning, Mangetout. It’s really very easy. I’ve done a half dozen in under a half hour.

Orange Skinner’s mom hit a phesant once, brought it to her mother’s house and she cleaned and cooked it. I also know that whenever there is a deer hit that the local police have a list of people to call and get the animal for the meat. I had a friend on the list, and drove his Camaro to pick up the deer. :smack:

Remember if you get caught taking roadkill you may have a fine to pay. It doesn’t matter how the animal died if it’s an animal you don’t have a license for.

In the UK?

Keep pluckin that chicken!

Not everybody in this thread are in the UK.

I’m just giving the warning before somebody gets nailed. I would think the UK still has some laws about wildlife in your possession if you don’t have a license.

I believe it is generally the case in the UK that a person can collect roadkill, as long as they were not responsible for its death (presumably to prevent people using their cars for deliberate hunting).

Interesting coincidence, eh, that the front of a car is called a grill?

That’s definitely the case with pheasant so I’d assume it’s the case with other wildlife too.
I think this got mentioned on QI a while back.

I deer ran into my vehicle. I reported it to the police. The officer who attended asked if he could have the deer.