Friday, March 27, 2015

Gil's Turkey

My friend Gil Stacy is a naturalist- hunter, reader, game cook, and fine gun addict who lives in Georgia and hunts everything with zest and style. While like me not... quite a collector, he has things like a Fox or two, an uncommon ten magnum Ithaca, English boxlocks. He even likes FRENCH guns, putting himself into a very small minority with me. His current snipe gun-- he HAS a snipe gun, and I swear I will get out there to hunt snipe, and maybe Woodcock, before I die,  partially because he does, is a Manufrance Robust 16 bore.

I know from these and other things that he is a man of taste and necessary obsessions, and one who would never cook either of those incredible birds for a half hour in the oven. I put mine in a very hot one for no more than ten minutes after setting them up, with or without "trail"-- I know some otherwise sensible folks who accept all our other traditional food madness, but won't go that last inch, so if we have a good harvest we cook them with AND without, though If I am the cook I will insist on leaving the heads on, just because...

 Guy Valdene once saw one of those recipes that get published in newspapers and local hunters' cookbooks, the ones where you get Jello recipes and the like, that recommended breading and deep-frying woodcock and then cooking them in two cans of Campbell's cream of mushroom soup for hours. His furious and correct response was : "As this negates the very motive for killing the birds in the first place, why not take it a step further and poach the woodcock overnight in equal parts of catsup, pabulum, and Pepto-Bismol?"

But I digress (!) I wanted to put up Gil's first gobbler of the year, with one of his highly modified 1- shot .410s, with which he has made more than a few immediate kills (custom chokes, custom loads, knowledge of the terrain, calling ability, and the patience to wait until they get close-- don't try it unless you have all those factors).
Gobbler, Turkish Yildiz folding .410, and a caller made from a  turtle shell. We will have more to say about that, as Gil has just sent me a package of the "ingredients"... (WE? sorry-- I am neither a king nor Elmer Keith. "I"!)

6 comments:

uplandish said...

Snipe have got to be the trickiest thing in feathers. I would be curious to know what load he uses for them? Here in WA we have to use non toxic shot for snipe and it makes things even trickier, as large steel pellets and tiny birds don't mix well nor does tiny steel pellets and longer snipe ranges. I do like kent tungsten matrix with my 16gauge fox, but it gets expensive fast shooting at snipe- which tend to fly like tiny barn stormers.

Gil said...

I prefer #8 lead, but will also shoot #9. When I hand load, it's 3/4 oz. for my 16 gauges.
We aren't required to use non-tox on state lands. Gil

Anonymous said...

Well hell, snipe ARE hard to get if you are trying to SHOOT them! Ain't you folks ever bin in on a Southern "snipe hunt"? Easy as pie. You just git some outsider/furriner/yankee to take a tow sack down in a gulley somewhere in tha frikkin' middle of nowhere(or in one especially cruel incident I know of, in a cold mountain stream in the middle of Winter), shine a flashlight in the back of the sack(to attract said snipe, of course), and WAIT. And wait.....and wait......and wait. Some especially persistant snipe hunters have been known to wait almost all night!.....L. B.

Anonymous said...

....and okay, I exhibited a rude prejudice in my last comment when I referred to "yankee" as a general category. To be fair, I shoulda said, specifically, "urban yankee"--and that probably by several generations to be gullible enough fer an old fashioned Southern Snipe Hunt!....L.B.

Anonymous said...

snipe is a noble game. Specialy over setters .French guns are also special but the robyst is unbalanced like a stik, and kikcs like a mule . Although MF has prooved that could make masterpieces like ''ideal''. French guns have the priviliege to be build on a very high quality , for hard use , a quality that otherwise is very expensive!

nikolaos K said...

snipe is a noble game. Specialy over setters .French guns are also special but the robyst is unbalanced like a stik, and kikcs like a mule . Although MF has prooved that could make masterpieces like ''ideal''. French guns have the priviliege to be build on a very high quality , for hard use , a quality that otherwise is very expensive!