Southern (Shelby) Fried Wild Turkey or Pheasant
I didn’t start cooking hardcore until about 5 years ago and if you ask my husband Chris he will tell you that I was an amazing chef from the start. NOT. When we first got married the only things I really knew how to cook was spaghetti and pizza rolls. Growing up I really didn’t show much interest in learning how to cook new things or venture out and cook things for myself; I usually just left that up to my parents to decide. Into year two of our marriage is when I really started trying different foods, Southern food that is. Being raised in the south by two Yankees from Pittsburgh, I didn’t see collard greens and turnips at my house. My husband Chris was constantly cooking greens, cornbread, pot roast, fresh fried fish…treats that I was definitely not accustom to and after some time he warmed me up to trying everything. I was over whelmed with the simple, easy recipes and just how good they tasted! Collard greens are my absolute favorite vegetable now. Once I decided to branch out and try new recipes I found that the simpler the recipe, the better the taste. Now, coming up on our 4th wedding anniversary, Chris might tell you I am a little better cook then at the beginning. (At least I hope he does ha!) One of my most requested recipes from family and friends is my fried turkey. This recipe stems from my Papa, Carson Sweeney. I have added a couple ingredients of my own as well. I also use this very same recipe to fry up pheasants as well. Both equally delicious! During this write up I will be using pheasants due to the fact that I used up all my turkey already. These pheasants were shot by Chris and I this past season in Kansas. So here we go…
What you will need:
3 Pheasant Breast (or 1 Turkey Breast)
1 Cup All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Fine Ground Cornmeal
½ Gallon Buttermilk
Gallon Ziplock Bag
2 Tbsp Cavenders Greek Seasoning
2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1 Tps White Pepper
First and foremost, prepare your meat. With turkey breast you will most likely have them already cut into boneless filets. While Pheasant we leave on the bone and freeze until we are ready to cook them. When frying them you’ll need to cut them off the breastbone. When done correctly you will end up with 2 tenderloins and 2 boneless filets per breast. See pictures below for the proper cut.
Next, pound your meat. Pound each filet and loin until they are about ¼ inch to ½ inch thick. Place all the meat in a bowl and cover with buttermilk until all is covered completely. Cover with lid or cling wrap and place in fridge over night. (You can do two days if you are dealing with older birds that need the extra tenderizing)
Make your breading. Combine flour, cornmeal, and all seasonings into Ziploc bag and shake up. After meat has set in fridge, pull it out and get ready to fry. Add oil to fry pan and bring up to 350 degrees. Toss you filets straight from the buttermilk into the dry mix. Cover completely and place in the grease.
Once all the filets are fried up and crispy you can add your choice of sides. I usually pair fresh cut fries and something green to finish the job. This recipe feeds around 4 people.
There is just something about harvesting your own game, cooking it up and knowing exactly where it came from that just makes you feel good about life. I hope you find this recipe easy and yummy! Thank you, ENJOY!