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  1. #1

    Default Squirrels! It's Whats for Supper

    I saw in a thread I had and in another thread that some people were wondering about cooking and eating squirrels. While there are some exceptions there are few things in this world as lovely as a squirrel gravy and a fun small game hunt makes it even sweeter. Unfortunately I will not have an "after" picture of delicious squirrels and gravy over a plate a rice. I am cooking these for a friend and fellow hunter. In a short amount of time I learned a good bit about deer hunting high pressure public land and rekindled my love for squirrel hunting from him. Unfortunately he recently suffered from a stroke. This meal will be for him and his wife when I go to visit him tomorrow. If yall would keep him and his family in thoughts and prayers during his recovery it would be greatly appreciated.

    Step 1:
    Enjoy a cool major chasing squirrels. Saturday morning was very slow movement. The squirrels were kinda out but weren't moving around feeding. Luckily after killing 5 (the number I wanted for this meal) and walking back towards the boat I found 6, 7, and 8 all in the same tree. It's always great to walk out of the woods with a limit of squirrels! All were good size and some were the absolute fattest I have ever seen. Suckers have been eating good on those big cow oak acorns (aka swamp chestnuts).
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  2. #2

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    Appreciate your passion for squirrel hunting and eating. I grew up on squirrel hunting, teaching me 1-shot kills, being stealthy in the woods and more. Eating is just as much fun, fried or made into a pot pie. The special treat is the heart, too bad it is small. Keep the tradition going.

  3. #3

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    Step 2: Seasoning
    For these I killed Saturday and left in the fridge marinading until I cooked them tonight, Moday. I used a mixture of Italian dressing, Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, Tony Chacerie's seasoning, and Best Stop seasoning. Both Tony's and best stop are Louisiana seasonings and may be hard to find outside the area, but I'm sure your preferred seasoning choice should work as well.

    I didn't have any pictures and won't go into detail of the skinning and quartering process unless requested but I will mention that I keep the four quarters and the lower back of each squirrel. Some keep the ribs but I prefer not to. The ribs will be the first thing to cook down and separate leaving you to pick out bones in your gravy. To keep as much meat while not including the rib I'll make cut down the back strap the fillet the meat off the ribs and work it up the squirrel and leave it attached to the front shoulder as pictured.
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  4. #4

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    Step 3: Cooking
    When browning the squirrels don't be afraid to BROWN them. My pot is kinda small for cooking 5 squirrels so I browned half and them then other. You can see the brown on my pot when done and really I could've browned more. Once you finish browning the squirrels add 1 onion and 1 bell pepper the squirrels and 2 dashes of kitchen bouquet browning seasoning and cover the lid. The added moisture will break up the "gradu" on the bottom on the pot and the next time you stir it'll all come off and add flavor.

    In a separate small pot I have water boiling and add two heaping spoon fulls of Savoie's roux. Feel free to make your own roux but I find it comes out easier and the same to use the store bought. If you make your own roux do that and then add it to your pot plus some water. If using a store bought roux boil until fully dissolved and then add to your pot. Either way make sure you have enough liquid to more of less cover the squirrels. Turn to heat down and cover.

    The browning and cooking until this point took me about 45 minutes. Squirrel is a meal meant for sharing and socializing. Rule of thumb is to cook 2 squirrels per person. It's always better to have too much food so I will cook one more than the rule plus add sausage. I like for the sausage to stand out with it's own unique taste so I will add it along with some green onion to the gravy after it has been cooking on low for the first hour. Then continue to cook until tender and add water occasionally if necessary. You can cook it and make it too tender and will be picking bones out your gravy. You want it tender enough to easily come off the bone when eating but stay intact. You can test the tenderness with a fork. Total cook time is about 2.5 hours.

    This is just my method and recipe, and as with anything else in hunting and cooking it is best when you're able to find your own method. I hope this helps and a few of yall venture out and enjoy a fun hunt and meal with friends!
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpauli View Post
    Appreciate your passion for squirrel hunting and eating. I grew up on squirrel hunting, teaching me 1-shot kills, being stealthy in the woods and more. Eating is just as much fun, fried or made into a pot pie. The special treat is the heart, too bad it is small. Keep the tradition going.
    Thank you very much. I believe it is how every kid should start hunting and many of us grown hunters should occasionally come back to. It is humbling when hunting big game to see so many and to think how easy it would be only to try to kill them and struggle to get a limit. Although I would like to hear the pot pie recipe!
    Last edited by JTHOMP; 12-04-2017 at 08:56 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    South East Colorado
    Posts
    9,007

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    I definitely need to do more rabbit and squirrel hunting this year.
    I'm an addict...archery, rifles, shotguns, handguns, muzzleloaders, hunting, fishing, fly fishing..and I don't want rehab

    CWEH...Colorado's Worst Elk Hunter 2007-2017 (but I'm still damned sexy) 10 years of consistency!! Taking 2018 off

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    SW Michigan
    Posts
    1,556

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    John make sure you bring a 22 with you up here. No one has hunted them in our block for years, we are over run with them.

  8. #8

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    Very nicely done, told, and shared! Squirrel hunting is my favorite small game pursuit here in IN. Just too much fun! I just wish I could find a few less grays and a few more fox squirrels...

  9. #9

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    Oh yeah that looks great. I really miss those tasty critters. Pine squirrels are not even close on flavor.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Western Montana
    Posts
    2,338

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    That looks darn good. Thanks for sharing!
    “It is well to go all out sometimes.” - Elers Koch

  11. #11

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    Those squirrels are almost as big as our cottontails. Squirrel gumbo if that's what you call it, looks delicious.
    When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breathe, only then will you discover you cannot eat money.

    Cree Prophecy

  12. #12

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    I'll try almost anything, but draw the line on eating rodents or snakes.

  13. #13

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    Greenhorn, is that a no on the Hasenpfeffer then? Your missing out...

  14. #14

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    Nice write up. I cut my teeth n squirrel hunting as I'm sure most on here did also. I've been known to take a bad day of deer hunting and turn it into a great squirrel day.

  15. #15

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    Does it taste so bad you have to cover it up with all those spices, onions and sausage?

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by MN Public Hunter View Post
    Does it taste so bad you have to cover it up with all those spices, onions and sausage?
    Nope, but sausage and onions makes everything taste better. My grandmother used to fry them and they were good. Really the only bad thing about squirrels is that they tend to be tough. A lot of people cook them in a pressure cooker before frying them.
    "The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Newhartford Iowa
    Posts
    2,658

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    That looks great.

  18. #18

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    Got any good sewer rat recipes?

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by MN Public Hunter View Post
    Does it taste so bad you have to cover it up with all those spices, onions and sausage?
    If you ever get a chance to eat a meal cooked in Louisiana you will change your mind about that statement. There is a reason we bring our own seasonings when traveling out of state. I grew up eating them fried and many times cowboy cooked them while camping. Like Southern Elk said they are just tougher.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greenhorn View Post
    Got any good sewer rat recipes?
    Many will turn their nose up at it even a lot of people from here, but the absolute best thing to eat is a nutria. It's about like eating a 15 pound rabbit with a thigh bigger than a chicken leg. It's a lean meat and very very tender. One of my old roommates girl friend is very picky about eating game meat. Cooked it for the first time and she had no shame in fixing a second plate.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTHOMP View Post
    If you ever get a chance to eat a meal cooked in Louisiana you will change your mind about that statement. There is a reason we bring our own seasonings when traveling out of state. I grew up eating them fried and many times cowboy cooked them while camping. Like Southern Elk said they are just tougher.
    The best food in the world is in New Orleans and south Louisiana. Good cajun and southern cooking is the thing that I miss most since moving up here from Mississippi. My wife and kids and I have a list of places that we are planning on eating at when we get to go back to visit.
    "The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Northern Wyoming
    Posts
    707

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    I travel a LOT for work, domestically and internationally, and have to absolutely agree that New Orleans has the best food. Even if you get italian or something not cajun, it will still be phenomenal. And as usual Greenhorn doesn't add much to this convo
    Coal. Guns. Freedom.

  22. #22

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    I suspect some of you guys have never had a good breakfast of squirrel gravy and homemade biscuits from scratch at grannies house growing up. It was about three days a week at mine. I'll take that meal over a tenderloin any day of the week that's a fact.
    Luckily it is about 50/50 Fox squirrel mix where I hunt them.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    4,320

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    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Elk View Post
    The best food in the world is in New Orleans and south Louisiana. Good cajun and southern cooking is the thing that I miss most since moving up here from Mississippi. My wife and kids and I have a list of places that we are planning on eating at when we get to go back to visit.
    i had a conference in New Orleans. Spend the days redfishing to the south and then would find holeinthewall restaurants downtown in the evening. Best food ever as long as you stayed away from that chain restaurant chit.

  24. #24

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    Was flipping through channels tonight and saw Sugar Bear convinced his wife to eat a squirrel on Mama June’s show.

  25. #25

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    Greenhorn, I'm glad you're too closed-minded to eat squirrels. There aren't that many in Montana, and it leaves more for me.

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