Sunday, November 16, 2008

Not Your Mother's Thanksgiving Receipe: Yummy Squirrel in Pie or Fricassee!

In my first book about Florida, I wanted to add a little variety, so I dug into my closet and came up with a cookbook my Aunt Helen gave me when she heard I was moving to Florida. Her husband, my Uncle Tom, had taught at the University of Florida, in Gainesville about forty years earlier and she, like the rest of the family, apparently, had trouble throwing things away. So instead of throwing away this old Florida cookbook, she sent it to me. It had been published in the early 1960s and in it I found two very politically incorrect receipes which I shared in my book and I now share with you here. Things being what they are these days, who knows when we might really need these? I hope it won't be this Thanksgiving, but you never know. This receipe came from the files of the Florida Department of Agriculture, so complain to them if you don't like! By the way you might substitute another kind of meat for the main ingredients, but if you don't, please don't tell me about it.

Squirrel Pie
Temperature 350F degrees Cooking time: 1 hour and 45 minutes ...

1 squirrel
3 Tablespoons flour
1/2 Tablespoon minced parsley
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup fresh cut mushrooms
2 cups stock or milk

Biscuits from mix or make using:
2 cups flour
4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup fat (shortening will do)
2/3 cup milk

Cut squirrel into 2 or 3 pieces. Cover with water and cook for one hour. Remove meat from bones in large pieces. Add flour, parsley, salt, pepper and mushrooms to the stock. Cook until it thickens (5 to 10 minutes) Add the meat and mix well. Pour into baking dish.

Make biscuits by sifting the flour, baking powder and salt together. Cut in the fat and add the milk. Stir until all the dry ingredients are moistened. Roll only enough to make it fit the baking dish. Place the dough on meat in baking dish and bake in moderate oven (350F) until the dough is golden brown, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Fricasseed Squirrel
Temperature: Low heat Cooking time: 3 1/2 hours

1 squirrel
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup flour
3 slices bacon
1 Tablespoon sliced onion
1 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/3 cup broth

Disjoint and cut squirrel into 6 or 7 pieces. Rub pieces with salt and pepper. Roll in flour. Pan fry with chopped bacon for 30 minutes. Add onion, lemon juice, broth, and cover tightly. Cook slowly over low heat for 3 hours.

One thing I will add in closing: if the worst comes to the worst, this is one kind of staple we do not have a shortage of in my neighborhood.

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