Herb Grilled Capon, Blueberry Salsa
Sitting at the computer one evening some weeks back and catching up on some news a Headline caught my eye, something like ‘Let’s just stop already it on the grill stuff for Dad’s on Father’s Day.’ So I read it out loud, enough for those on the first floor to hear.
The response from the Dad in our house was to immediately shoot up from his office seat remarking in a nervous sort of tone ‘But that’s what I really want, Grill Stuff.’ I could feel a relieved hush from the other side of the room as my eldest, Sooky the Stylist, had already planned a grill follow- up to last years Smoker. Dad was quite keen to give a go on the newest version of the egg shaped grill for barbecuing as this year’s Father’s Day gift.
Now we might all generally agree that Dad’s sometimes have selective hearing, and this point of announcement hit the blinking red flash, select to hear, button.
Having a fashion maven daughter, Dad was likely immediately terrorized on the idea of a trendy wrapped designer wallet or pair of shoes instead of his dream grill, and this was more than enough to even interrupt watching the Phillies game just to set the point clear. I clicked out of the article.
Egg style grill secured, the same as last year, after receiving one of his favorite gifts of all time, the Smoker, Dad then immediately made a visit to the butcher to check out the meat selection and scheme out the plan for the following day.
One of the day’s choice selection was a 6 pound Capon. Now a capon is not a pigeon, just to set the record straight, as I do know some who used to believe such on what is an appreciated succulent prize treasured in many parts of Europe, though not commonly available here, except through a private butcher.
A capon is a castrated rooster and relieved of its frustrations is less hyper active and aggressive, thus much more tender with generous flesh and ample breast meat, as compared to a gamier taste produced by the un-castrated rooster.
Though having knowledge in recognizing the distinction between a pigeon and a Caponized bird is a given in the household, a slight bit of confusion might occur if the capon is placed bagged in the refrigerator alongside bagged small roasting chickens that I regularly cook for stock or clean and freeze for later use. Oops. Well in this case, the Capon meant for grilling on the new Egg style grill was accidentally tossed into the freezer.
After a lovely day picking blueberries out at Terhune Farms in Princeton, New Jersey last week, a fresh Blueberry Salsa was definitely on the menu agenda.
Blueberry Salsa is quite diverse in its use and could have been shared in any number of ways; this lively colorful combination simply scooped onto cup style tortilla chips, topped on a piece of fresh fish, or perhaps as part of a salad, but the deciding factor today on this Capon was due to another, well another, Oops again.
Still thinking the capon in the bag in the freezer was a small roasting chicken for stock, I pulled it out and accidentally defrosted it. Hence, for Sunday dinner the following day Dad was ready and eager firing up his new egg style grill, the ‘grilling’ gift he really did most want for Father’s Day and its accompaniment simply displayed diverse complementary combinations, Herb Grilled Capon, Blueberry Salsa.
- 6 pound capon
- 1 lemon, cut in half, stuffed into capon cavity
- 3-4 six inch long branches fresh rosemary, approximately
- 10 clippings thyme
- 6 sage leaves
- 6 lemon balm leaves
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- coarse kosher salt
- cracked black pepper
- 2 cups blueberries, washed, picked through and pulled of any stems or imperfect blueberies
- 2 nectarines, stone removed, fruit cubed
- 1 small red onion, chopped
- 1 cucumber, sliced in half lengthwise, seeds removed, sliced into lengthwise strips, chopped
- 1 long red hot pepper, chopped fine
- 1 jalapeno, chopped fine
- 3-4 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro, chopped
- 1 lime, seeded, juiced
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- small pinch of coarse kosher salt, optional
- 1 large Pizza Stone, optional
- Preheat wood or briquets. Salt pizza stone all around, if using. Pour a tablespoon or two of olive oil onto bird, sprinkle over some coarse kosher salt and pepper then rub all over. Place the lemon halves into the cavity of the capon, use kitchen string to tie bird if desired, then cover with the fresh herbs. Set capon onto the pizza stone, place onto grill and cover maintaining grill temperature at around 250 degrees for around 3 to 3 1/2 hours depending on type of grill and ability to maintain heat temperature. Capon may also be finished off in an oven at 300 degrees and same as a roasted chicken cooked until the juices run clear. Tent for ten minutes before slicing. Top with Blueberry Salsa.
- Combine all ingredients together in a glass bowl, pour in the lime juice and cider vinegar, stir. Serve on top of grilled capon. May also be served on chips, fish, pork, or any poultry.