One of my favorite mild, white meats.
Pan-fried squirrel in a sturdy gravy is one of my favorite dishes come holiday time. Squirrel is regaining its popularity outside of the small pockets of enthusiasts that have traditionally embraced it and I couldn’t be happier. It’s a mild, light, white meat that’s great when cooked properly. Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
Chicken-Fried Squirrel with Pan Gravy
- 3 pounds squirrel legs and loin pieces
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Lard, vegetable oil or bacon drippings for frying
- 1 cup minced onion
- A few sprigs thyme and rosemary
- 12 ounces chicken stock
- 1 cup cream
- Salt and black pepper
Dredge the squirrel legs and loin pieces in one cup buttermilk. Let rest in the fridge for 12 hours.
Remove meat from milk and dredge in well-seasoned flour.
Pan fry in a cast iron skillet (I use everything from lard to vegetable oil to bacon drippings). Just make sure the fry pan has 1/4-inch of ‘oil’ so that you are really frying – it makes a difference. Cook until crispy.
Reserve fried squirrel to a paper towel-lined plate.
Drain skillet. Discard fats.
Return pan to medium heat.
Add one cup minced onion and a few sprigs of thyme or rosemary.
Cook, stirring, picking up the browned bits as you go.
Add 12 ounces chicken stock to pan.
Bring to simmer, cook for 5 minutes and then add the cream to pan.
Bring to simmer. Add squirrel pieces back to the pan and cook in the gravy for 4 to 5 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper, and serve.