Sunday, December 5, 2010

Squirrel Lamps and Squirrel Stroganoff

Walking is such a great thing, especially in New York.  Every day I walk home and every day I discover something new.  Exhibit A would be these lovely and whimsical Squirrel Light Sconces.  I'd have to double check, but I think The Future Perfect store that I saw them in on Great Jones street is asking $825 a piece for them.

Of course in New York we have an over abundance of squirrels, both gray and black.  I have in my darker moments pondered why squirrels were never eaten and pretty much came to the quick conclusion that there really is so little meat on these varmints that it doesn't seem worth the effort to catch one and cook it.   Then when I saw them being used as lighting fixtures I wondered what happened to all the edible parts?  I mean if you're going to kill an animal, even if it is nothing more then an urban rodent you might as make the most if it, right?  So I did a search and was amazed at just how many squirrel recipes there are.  One site, whose tag line at the top of the page is "It's not just for Breakfast any more!", has an exhaustive selection of recipes for how you can cook your squirrel, and not just for breakfast.  I had no idea squirrels were ever considered breakfast food...squirrel with biscuits and gravy anyone? The site is called Mike West's Squirrel Site, your one stop destination for all things squirrel.

Here is his recipe for Squirrel Stroganoff:

Squirrel Stroganoff
6-7 slices bacon, diced
2 squirrels cut into serving pieces
3/4 cup flour
2 1/2 tsp dry mustard
1 1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup chicken broth
1 large onion, diced
4 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups sour cream

handful of grapes, halved
1/4 cup sherry

minced parsley
Fry bacon until crisp and set aside.
Roll meat pieces in the flour mixed with herbs/spices, using all of the flour mixture if possible, and brown meat over medium heat.
Takes about 15 minutes to do this.

Add the chicken broth, cover and simmer until the saddle pieces seem tender (15 minutes)
While the meat is simmering, saute the onion and then the mushrooms in butter and set aside.
When done, remove the meat temporarily and stir in the sour cream, grapes, onion and mushrooms. Make sure the sour cream melds with the other ingredients and if necessary, add a bit of hot water.
Simmer for 5 minutes but do not let it boil.
Now stir in the sherry, add bacon and meat and simmer just until the meat is heated again. Garnish with parsley.

Bon Appetit!

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