2015-11-27 - Coratella

Coratella is the Italian name for all the organs in the thoracic (chest cavity) and the dish includes the heart, lungs, liver, spleen and kidneys of either a young lamb, chicken or rabbit. We were fortunate to obtain a suckling Boerbok lamb from a farmer close to Dunedin and I went to the farm and slaughtered it myself, hence had access to all the organs normally discarded and seldom eaten in New Zealand. Coratella is also the name of the resulting dish.

Clean the organs making sure that all the blood is washed off, then cut it into cubes about 2 cm square. Dice two onions and two cloves of garlic and fry in some butter and olive oil until well soft. Ad all the organs, except the liver, and fry well over medium to high heat. While frying, ad a chopped red chili, two bay leaves, salt and pepper. When the meat is almost done ad the liver and turn the heat to high. Ad a handful of chopped parsley and fry for three to four minutes until livers are done, but still pink on the inside. Ad one glass of dry white wine and let it evaporate. Serve immediately with polenta.

Do not forget the good home made dry red wine!


Rare Coturnix coturnix


Every so often one finds a unique bird in your flock. At present I am breeding four different breeds of Coturnix coturnix, one which is a White breed that was originally developed by the A & M Texas University as a dual purpose bird. The Americans claim their Jumbo Browns to be 450 – 500 g in body mass, but trying to locate such birds or breeders of these large birds appears to be very difficult – I do not know why the Americans want to hide these. Anyway, unlike our friends from abroad, I am not trying to breed the Coturnix coturnix bigger and bigger (if I wanted to breed big birds, I would have started with ostriches), but have put my mind on breeding two of my breeds to be about 280 – 300 g for the females and 220 – 250 for the males – a milestone I have already reached in New Zealand after two and a half years of intensive selection. Hence, I am presently selecting against too big birds in these breeds and made my primary selection criteria egg production, feed conversion, fecundity and body conformation. This is a good size eating bird, which is still an effective producer of both meat and eggs. But back to my unique bird – the A & M Texans are white, but almost always have a black or brown spot somewhere on the body. It is a breed I have had little experience with, but breeding more than 1200 Whites over the past two years, I have bred only three ALL WHITES with no other coloring at all. The first two did not make it on my selection criteria and color not being important to me, they only made it as far as the stock pot. This third all white I have will definitely make it to the breeding pens as he is a magnificent specimen and weighed in at 230 g on 33 days of age. This is my UNIQUE BIRD! (I presume there are other breeders in New Zealand with strains of the pure whites)