Tomorrow is October 1st and it kicksoff the fall small game species hunting season across the state! Squirrel, Rabbit and other small game animals offer kids and us adults
some golden opportunities to sharpen our predatory skills, gain a higher degree of expertise with our guns and hitting small targets in a moving environment. In other words, it is better than any video game and is a lot more fun!
And after the hunt, you get to enjoy the unique taste of fried squirrels and gravy, squirrel dumplings, stewed squirrels with rice and broth, squirrel dressing or any number of great recipes that use the nutritious and very low fat, all natural meat of the “Alabama Limb Chicken”.
The other small game favorite I enjoyed alot in my boyhood days was rabbits. To this day, nothing beats a nice big, “caine cutter” (RABBIT) back strap or hind leg that has been parboiled about 20 minutes, then flour coated and fried in hot peanut oil! My mother and grandmother both excelled at their ability to take rabbit preparation to the level of executive chef and beyond! The rabbits they cooked us were tender, and packed with the fresh flavor of the southern hard woods swamps where we hunted.
Most of them were prepared fresh. although mom frozen them often, wrapped in that white butcher paper and we used to get a happy smile when we saw rabbits thawing in the kichen sink or the refrigerator. Paired with sides of fluffy white rice or real mashed potatoes and always homemade broth based gravy. The meal was as lavish as any restaurant of the day. Mom would prepare it for dinner guest who sometimes thought it was fried chicken. We boys would often watch the face of an unsuspecting “city” guest for that “shock and awe” moment of delight when they chewed the bite and tried to decide if they should comment now or later. More than once, I heard a “grown-up” guest tell mother that was the best chicken they ever tasted and “wanted her recipe”. She would often laugh and reply “just start with a few fresh caine-cutters” and then they would laugh.
A doctor friend of my dad use to pay us boys to go “get him some rabbits” while he was visiting and mother would fry them up for the guys as they sat under the big red oak in our yard doing their best country music singer impressions and strumming guitars while the air filled with the heavenly smell of fried rabbits, fried squirrels, and sometimes a few fresh farm house chickens that I got to wring the neck on..
Eating the fried squirrels or rabbits is some of my favorite childhood memories. Hunting them in the oak flats between our home and the Black Warrior River. Other times we would track through the hills north of our home to find the big fox squirrels that inhabited the hickory hollows and red oak covered hills.
Take a kid squirrel hunting this week or this weekend! Make some hunting memories and harvest some of the finest eating you have ever tasted!
~POSTOAK~ OUT IN THE SQUIRREL WOODS!