Squirrels are commonly hunted anywhere in the United States and Canada they are found. That is to say, they are hunted nearly everywhere. Since they are typical rodents, they repopulate fast and can have several litters per year, so there isn’t much danger of them becoming scarce, even though they are heavily preyed upon by many carnivorous animals.
Many people might not consider eating them, thinking of them as mice or rats, though they are neither. Both ground and tree squirrels are primarily vegetarian and the meat is tasty. The following recipe is for creamed squirrel over egg noodles, which is a delicious way to cook them. I came up with this recipe because I was taught not to kill something I didn’t intend to eat.
Any squirrel can be used, however the recipe is written with pine squirrels in mind. The recipe should be varied according to the size and kind of the squirrels that are being prepared. For instance, Golden Mantled Ground Squirrels tend to be a little smaller than pine squirrels, while marmots tend to be far larger.
Initial preparation of the meat is to skin and gut the squirrel, rinsing it well, and then to let it soak for about a half hour in salted water. The squirrel is then dried off and broken in half through the middle, yielding a front and a rear half. At that point, it is simple to make the creamed squirrel.
Ingredients for Creamed Squirrel (serves 2)
- 4 squirrels, about a half pound each
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons instant potatoes (as a thickener)
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon garlic, crushed
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 1/2 teaspoon sage
- 1 one pound package of egg noodles, cooked and served hot
Instructions for Creamed Squirrel
1. Put the squirrels, chicken broth and onions in a medium pot. If the meat and onions aren’t covered with the liquid, add a little water or more chicken broth until it is. Heat to a boil over medium heat, then add the garlic, basil and sage. Reduce heat to a simmer and allow the squirrel to cook for a half hour, covered.
2. In a bowl, mix the cream and instant potatoes together, then pour these into the pot with the cooked squirrel. More instant potatoes can be added to adjust the creamed squirrel to your desired thickness. Allow this to cook for a couple of minutes, stirring.
3. Pour the creamed squirrel over the egg noodles and mix well, serving the meal hot.
Creamed Squirrel Suggestions
If you wish, you can add a can of peas to the creamed squirrel during the last few minutes of cooking time. Peas can alternately be served as a great side dish.
This meal is a little bit bland, so spinach, mustard greens or similar robust flavored vegetables go with the creamed squirrel quite well. This dish is also excellent with fried green tomatoes or eggplant and some people enjoy it with fried okra.
The creamed squirrel and egg noodles doesn’t take much time to prepare and the flavor is great. It is also a healthy meal, while being a filling one as well. If you are going squirrel hunting anyway, the creamed squirrel is a wonderful way to fix the meat. After all, there is no reason to waste the food when it can be so delicious.