“Squirrel and dumplings” ranks high on my list of all-time-favorite wild game dinners. My mother and grandmother often prepared this delicious, filling meal when I was growing up, and I still get a hankering for it when autumn chills the air.
Preparation is simple and inexpensive. Take some tough old squirrels (or rabbits, if you prefer) and stew them several hours in seasoned broth until the pink meat falls from the bones. Remove the bones from the broth, then drop in dumplings you prepared earlier. (Frozen dumplings from the supermarket can be substituted.) In minutes, you will have before you a glorious dish that will titillate the taste buds of even the most jaded diner. Serve in large soup bowls with a sprinkling of finely chopped fresh parsley on top and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Tradition dictates that you include on the side several slices of light bread for sopping up the rich gravy.
- 3 squirrels
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Salt, black pepper
- Dumplings (recipe below)
Place the squirrels in a large pot. Add chicken broth, then add enough water to barely cover the squirrel pieces. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Simmer until the meat is tender and falling from the bones. Transfer to a plate or bowl, allow to cool, and remove the meat from the bones. Discard bones.
Return the squirrel meat to the pot, and bring the liquid to a simmer. Add dumplings you have previously prepared. Cover; boil gently for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the broth has thickened. Serves 4 to 6.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon parsley flakes
- 1/3 cup vegetable shortening
- 1/2 cup milk
Combine flour, baking powder, salt and parsley flakes. Cut in shortening. Add enough milk to make a stiff dough. Shape the mixture into a ball, and roll to a thickness of 1/8-inch on a lightly floured surface. Cut into 1-inch strips, and drop into boiling squirrel stock.