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Rattlesnake Skinning and Dining

If you live in the country there’s a fair chance that you live with rattlesnakes. Some folks kill them and throw them aside, but rattlesnake meat is actually pretty tasty and nutritious, and the stretched skins are beautiful, too! Preparing a fresh snake isn’t for the faint of heart. Take your decapitated snake and bury the head to keep pets and critters safe. If it was killed recently, it will probably still be wiggling and coiling. You just have to work around that. Hold it firmly and slit the skin where the head was attached. Stick your finger into the slit, grab the skin and yank downward. You should be able to remove the whole skin; it will turn inside out. Or cut carefully down the middle of the belly and gently peel it off. The rattle can go with the skin. For a 3- to 4-foot snake, melt a quarter of a stick of butter in a frying pan. Sprinkle the meat with salt and your favorite spices. Add snake meat and brown. Once browned, turn heat down, cover (with lid slightly off to allow steam to escape) and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the lid for the last 10 minutes to reduce juices. However you decide to prepare it, make sure to cook the meat for at least half an hour to tenderize. The meat can be eaten from the spine and ribs, similar to fried chicken. We preserve our skins by nailing them on a board and rubbing hand lotion into both sides several times while they dry. 

Tags: Rattlesnake

Views: 116

Replies to This Discussion

I would like to give it a try someday. 

OMG!  Ok Ms. Jan, I have eaten some weird stuff in my day but I can't see eating a rattlesnake, sorry.

That looks interesting , I especially like the tip about curing the skin . Rattlers are a bit scarce here may have to take a trip to the zoo !!

Ms. Data, I am with you although my dad use to tell me it is not bad nor strong.  John, LOL...they might not be happy with that thought.  Maybe you could swing it as an impromptu survival course

Squirrel Legs

Ready in: 1 hour 30 minutes

  • 8 strips bacon
  • 16 meaty squirrel legs
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onions
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  1. Cook the bacon and set aside. Reserve grease in the skillet. While the bacon is cooking, season the squirrel with salt and pepper, and set aside.
  2. In a resealable bag, add flour and cornstarch. Whisk together eggs and milk until smooth. Dredge the squirrel in the flour mixture, shake off excess flour, then dip into egg mixture, shaking off excess egg. Dredge again in the flour, and set aside.
  3. Discard all but two tablespoons of bacon fat from the skillet, and bring back to medium-high heat. Cook the squirrel pieces until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side, then set aside.
  4. Turn heat down to medium; add the onions, garlic, and shallot and cook for 3 minutes, until soft. Pour in the chicken stock, and add the bay leaf and minced thyme. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer.
  5. Add the squirrel, return to a simmer, cover, then turn heat to medium-low. Cook until very tender, about 30 minutes.
  6. Remove the squirrel legs to a serving platter and spoon the sauce over them. Sprinkle with crumbled bacon and serve.

Buttermilk Fried Squirrel

Ready in: 1 hour

  • 2 young squirrels, cut into serving pieces
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon (or a teaspoon each of your 3 favorite dried herbs)
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2-3 cups grape seed or vegetable oil
  1. Soak the squirrel overnight in buttermilk with onions, garlic, herbs, paprika and cayenne pepper.
  2. Drain in a colander, leaving some herbs on the meat. In a large re-sealable plastic bag, or in a large bowl, mix the flour with the garlic and onion powder and cayenne, as well as a dash of salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet on medium-high heat.
  3. Place the squirrel pieces in the bag with flour and shake until thoroughly coated.
  4. Add the squirrel to the skillet and fry on one side for about 10 minutes, until golden brown, and then use tongs to turn the pieces over and fry for another 10 minutes, again until golden brown.
  5. Remove the squirrel from the skillet and place it on a wire rack over paper towel.
Q. What's the difference between a southern zoo and a northern zoo

A. The southern zoo has a description of the animal along with a recipe.



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