Wednesday, July 25, 2012

How to Cook Squirrel Fricassee...

Source: yimm149, CC-BY, via flicker
It's no secret that I had a disdain for squirrels and the damage that they do to my gardens.  Combine that with their blatant amusement in teasing the dogs which results in barking because I won't let them loose to catch and kill them and I have a couple of problems that all revolve around tree rats.  Traps may not be the total solution to the problem but they sure do help to put a dent in it.  Especially since I found out the tree rats around here have acquired a taste for peanuts.  Turns out it is a very efficient trap bait.

Anyone who finds themselves with an abundant supply of destructive squirrels will appreciate this recipe.  It's taken from one of my vintage cookbooks and is absolutely fantastic.  It reminds me of the way my grandmother used to cook squirrel when I was a kid.  Back then people didn't give you that look of shock and horror when they found out your family hunted and killed their own meat like they do now.  Like I said before, we are a generation that has been totally disconnected with where our food comes from.

If you don't know how to dress a squirrel, here's a great video that I found that explains it all:


You'll need:

2 dressed young squirrels, approximately 1 pound each
1 1/2 tsp. salt
Pepper to taste
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 to 3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups milk
1 teaspoon grated onion

You'll want to make sure the squirrel is completely cleaned, no lingering hair and make sure the scent glands are removed.  Cut the squirrel into serving pieces (see video above).

Combine salt, pepper and flour.  Dredge the squirrel in the flour mixture until it is completely coated.

Heat the shortening in a skillet and cook the squirrel pieces until they are well browned, this will take about 15 minutes.  Add 1/4 cup of the water, put the lid on the pan, reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes until the squirrel is tender.  You'll want to keep an eye on it and add more of the water if the pan starts to dry out.  Take the squirrel out of the pan but keep it covered to keep it warm.

Put the left over flour into the pan (you are making gravy next) and stir to combine it with the drippings.  Slowly add the milk and cook it until the gravy is bubbly and is thick.  Constantly stir it to make sure nothing sticks to the pan and ends up burning.  You can add the grated onion to the gravy then spoon it over the top of your cooked squirrel.

Anyone who said "ewww" when they saw this has obviously never had a good squirrel dinner.  It's absolutely fantastic.

You might also find this appetizing:  How to Cook Chicken Offal.  It's pretty good too! 

Happy Tuesday!



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