The ‘Glorious 12th’ marks the start of grouse season each year, and this deliciously rich game bird is the perfect match for strong Scottish flavours, as Paul Welburn uses in this recipe. Douglas fir adds a hint of pine, while the traditional haggis, neeps ‘n’ tatties are updated in a crisp, fried croquette. Serve with a wee dram of whisky for the ultimate experience!

This recipe was created for us in partnership with the Moorland Association and Great British Chefs by Michelin Star Paul Welburn who was originally from Yorkshire but now works for Tonic and Remedy in London

This recipe uses a water bath but if you do not have one, it can be pan/oven cooked using this link

If you wish to impress at a dinner party this is the recipe to do.

Recipe courtesy of

Pine-scented grouse with cobnuts, haggis, neeps 'n' tatties

By Annette Woolcock Published: August 24, 2015

  • Yield: 2 Servings
  • Prep: 2 hrs 0 min

The ‘Glorious 12th’ marks the start of grouse season each year, and this deliciously rich game bird is the perfect match for …



  1. 1. Add the spelt to a large pan, cover with water and boil for 45 minutes or until tender and soft (almost to the point of overcooking). To dry out the spelt, preheat the oven to 60°C and dry the spelt on a baking sheet for 5-6 hours
  2. 2. Thinly slice the turnip with a mandolin, sprinkle with a little salt and rest for half an hour before rinsing off any excess salt. Place the wine, vinegar, water, sugar and thyme in a pan and bring to the boil. Take off the heat and use to cover the turnip, leaving it to pickle for at least 3 hours
  3. 3. Joint the grouse (or ask a butcher to do this first), removing the wings and legs to leave you with these and the two crowns
  4. 4. Heat a water bath to 64°C and put the crowns in separate sous vide bags. Add 25ml oil, one of the juniper berries and some Douglas fir. Seal and cook for 15 minutes
  5. 5. Remove from the sous vide and remove the breasts from the bones, reserving the bones for the sauce
  6. 6. To make the sauce, brown the grouse legs in some oil in a pan then set aside while repeating for the grouse bones. Add the butter to the bones and continue to cook until golden and thoroughly caramelised
  7. 7. Reserve the bones and place the shallots, thyme, peppercorns, juniper and bay in the pan to colour. Use the whisky to deglaze the pan before adding the stock. Place the bones back in the pan and bring up to simmer. Place the legs in the stock and braise for an hour or so, until tender
  8. 8. Leave to cool, then remove the legs from the liquor and shred the meat off the bones for the croquettes. Sieve the sauce to remove the herbs and spices, then return to the heat and allow to thicken. Add salt and pepper to taste
  9. 9. Take 100ml of the sauce and allow to reduce a lot further until you have 25ml for the croquettes. Add some more Douglas pine sprigs to the remaining sauce so that it infuses before serving
  10. 10. Place the carrot, swede and 50ml vegetable oil in a pan for the croquettes. Cook down for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, colour the haggis in another pan with a little more oil
  11. 11. Mix together the haggis, carrot, swede and other ingredients (except flour, egg and oats) in a bowl with the reduced 25ml of sauce and the leg meat (about 50g worth). Add salt and pepper to taste
  12. 12. Once cool, roll small balls of the mix (about 35g each). Chill in the fridge until firm and ready to cook
  13. 13. Add the butter and swede to a pan for the purée and allow to cook down until soft, then blitz in a blender with the mace and cloves until smooth (this can also be passed through a sieve for an extra smooth texture, or the swede could be part replaced with carrot for a brighter colour)
  14. 14. When ready to serve, heat a knob of butter in a frying pan until it foams. Place the grouse breasts in skin-side down with some Douglas fir and allow to roast for 5 minutes, basting all the time with the butter. Remove once the skin is golden and rest prior to carving
  15. 15. Heat a deep-fryer to 190°C and fry the spelt until puffed up. Drain any excess oil on kitchen paper
  16. 16. Take the chilled and firm croquettes and pane in flour, egg and oats before deep-frying. When gold and crisp, remove and blot of excess oil on paper. Season with salt and pepper to taste
  17. 17. Gently toast the shelled cobnuts, and sweat down the rainbow chard in a little butter and seasoning
  18. 18. To plate, swipe some purée on each plate, before topping with long slices of the grouse breast, some spelt and cobnuts, and a haggis croquette. Add a few leaves of the chard and some slices of the pickled turnips
  19. 19. Serve the sauce on the side and perhaps a dram of whisky
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