Muttonbirds or mutton birds are petrel species, particularly shearwaters, whose young are harvested in New Zealand and Australia for food and other purposes before they fledge. To cook mutton bird for food, patiently follow this detailed guide
1. Mutton birds
2. 2 bay leaves
3. 8 finely chopped shallots
4. 1 liter of chicken stock
5. 1 lemon (zest and juice)
6. 1/4 cup of olive oil
7. 1 cup of Arborio rice
8. 80 mL of White wine
9. 120g of Feta
10. 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese
11. 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
12. 1 handful of fresh herbs, chopped, sage, basil, thyme, mint, coriander, parsley, and rosemary, plus additional to serve
For the muttonbird
1. Place the mutton bird in a big pot of cold water and add bay leaves.
2. Place it on a cooker, then reduce to a gentle simmer for 1½ to 2 hours. Leave for one hour
3. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Drain all liquid from the muttonbird and lay it, skin side up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
4. Grill for 10-15 minutes, or until the skin is crisp. More oil is going to be released by the birds. Set aside
For the risotto
1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan
2. Add the shallots and lemon zest and simmer for 1-2 minutes
3. Add the rice and stir for about a minute, or until the grains are fully coated and gleaming.
4. Then pour in the wine and whisk until entirely absorbed.
5. Add a ladle of boiling stock and simmer, either stirring or allowing the mixture to soak without being touched.
6. Cook, ladle by ladle until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is cooked but firm for about 20 minutes. Set aside the remaining ladle of stock.
7. Combine the reserved stock, herbs, parmesan, feta, lemon juice, and half of the extra virgin olive oil in a mixing bowl. Season with pepper to taste.
8. Remove from the heat, cover, and set aside for 2 minutes to rest. Stir in the remaining extra virgin olive oil.
9. Remove any fatty portions and skin from the muttonbird and shred them into small pieces before adding to the risotto.
10. Serve immediately with the reserved chopped mixed herbs.
Salted Mutton Birds
Everyone has an opinion on the best way to prepare salted mutton birds. People have told me about soaking them in water for three days, changing the water several times while boiling them, and cooking them in the microwave without boiling them. People have even been known to fry them with a rock. This is the greatest recipe I've discovered for salted mutton birds.
In a big saucepan of water, place the necessary amount of salted mutton birds. Add your favorite boiled veggies, such as onions, kumara, carrots, cabbage, potatoes, peas, and whatever else you have on hand.
How To Cook Salted Muttonbird
1. Place the saucepan on a high-heat burner. Allow the water to boil, then reduce to low heat for 5 minutes. This prevents the mutton birds from tasting overly salty; if you want salty foods, skip this step. If you don't like salt in your food, repeat this step.
2. Fill the pot with fresh water while keeping the heat on high. Allow the water to boil vigorously for 5 minutes
3. Reduce the heat to low and leave the pot to simmer for about an hour. If you are unsure whether the mutton birds are properly cooked, try removing a leg. If it easily comes off, they're done.
4. Remove the mutton birds from the pot and lay them in a roasting dish. Grill for about 15 minutes, or until they are as crispy as you desire.
5. Serve the mutton birds with the veggies, which will have taken on the flavor of the mutton birds. To add flavor, I prefer to prepare a packet of gravy.
6. Savour the distinct muttonbird flavor and feel the health. Your body will appreciate you for this omega-3-rich supper. Some folks keep the water and use it the next day to boil poultry or ducks.