Duck Hunting photo

One of the overriding themes of the Wild Chef blog has been an attempt to kill any notion that certain species of game–whether it’s duck, antelope, or deer–isn’t edible, or tastes “gamey.” Surprisingly, or maybe not, hunters, and especially duck hunters, are often the hardest to convince. Luckily, there are guys like Neil Selbicky out there. Rather than believe everything he hears, Selbicky, a Wild Chef reader, was brave enough to take the path less traveled and come up with a recipe for northern shovelers, also known as the spoonie. Selbicky is a convert to the Wild Chef way of thinking, and he gladly shared the recipe for his Spoonie Sliders, which he says “made quite possibly the best little burgers I have ever had.”

Spoonie Sliders

– One northern shoveler
– 1 Aidells Spicy Mango with Jalapeño Sausage (LINK:
– 1 egg
– ¼ cup red onion, chopped
– 2 garlic cloves, minced
– 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
– Masa flour as needed

1. Breast your bird and chop the meat into pieces. Chop one sausage into pieces. Mix the duck and sausage together and run the meat through a grinder. (I like to grind semi-frozen pieces.)

2. To the ground meat, add the egg, chopped red onion, minced garlic, and balsamic vinegar. Run everything through the grinder again to mix well.

3. Now make your patties. If the patties are a little soft and runny (like mine were) add just enough corn masa flour to firm them up and form them again. You should get three plump little burgers.

4. Fry the burgers in bacon fat in a cast iron skillet.

5. Top the burgers with Pepper Jack cheese and serve on mini-buns with baby arugula lettuce and mustard greens. Drizzle lime juice and creamy balsamic salad dressing over all.