Welcome to our recipe for Squirrel Dumplings. This delicious dish is a traditional Appalachian favorite that’s been around for generations. It’s a unique and flavorful way to use squirrel meat, and is sure to be a hit with family and friends alike. This recipe is easy to make and can be cooked on the stovetop or in the oven. The dumplings provide a tasty and filling base, while the squirrel meat gives the dish an added richness.
This dish is sure to become a favorite in your home, so give it a try today! Be sure to also check out our 10 recipes for beaver.
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Squirrel Dumplings Recipe
Squirrel Dumplings is an old Southern recipe that combines sautéed ground squirrel with a savory dumpling dough to create a delicious dish. The ground squirrel is seasoned with a blend of spices, including garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and cayenne pepper. The dough is made with all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and butter. The dough is formed into dumplings and boiled until fork-tender. The dumplings are then served alone or with a creamy gravy. This rustic recipe is a comforting and tasty way to enjoy squirrel meat.
- 1 pound squirrel meat, marinated for at least 4 hours
- 1/2 cup allpurpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1/2 cup chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup frozen green peas
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, basil, thyme, and paprika.
- Add the water, olive oil, and butter, and mix until the dough starts to come together. Knead the dough for a few minutes until it is nice and smooth.
- Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and roll each piece out into a circle about 4 inches in diameter.
- In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots, and peas, and cook until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the marinated squirrel meat and chicken broth, and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Place a spoonful of the squirrel filling in the center of each dumpling. Gently fold the edges of the dumpling over to seal the filling in the center. Place the dumplings on a greased baking sheet.
What do squirrel dumplings taste like?
Squirrel Dumplings are made with a savory ground squirrel filling that’s wrapped up in a soft, fluffy dumpling dough. The flavor of the filling is earthy and meaty, with a hint of nuttiness. As the dumplings cook, the dough turns golden brown and crisp, while the filling releases it’s rich and intensely flavorful juices. The savory filling is complemented by the sweetness of the dough and the crunch of the crust. The dumplings are best served hot, with a side of sweet and sour sauce or a sprinkle of herbs and spices.
What is the history behind the dish?
Squirrel dumplings are a traditional Appalachian dish that has been enjoyed for generations. The dish originated in the mountains of North Carolina and has since been adopted by many other cultures. The dish is a savory mixture of diced squirrel meat, onions, potatoes, and spices. The meat is traditionally wrapped in biscuit dough and boiled or steamed until the dough is cooked through.
The origins of squirrel dumplings are unclear, with some speculating that they may have been introduced to the region by German immigrants. The dish was likely popularized in the early 20th century, and by the 1930s it was a regular part of Appalachian cuisine. During the Great Depression, people in the area cooked the dumplings with whatever ingredients were available, including squirrel meat.
Squirrel dumplings have since become a beloved Appalachian tradition. Today, the dish is often served with a side of gravy and sometimes accompanied by other vegetables. It is a reminder of the resourcefulness of Appalachian families, as well as the region’s dedication to cooking with locally sourced ingredients.
What type of squirrel is commonly used for the dish?
Squirrel dumplings are a traditional Appalachian dish that combines squirrel meat, onions, and spices wrapped in a flour-based dough and boiled in a flavorful broth. The most commonly used squirrel for dumplings is the eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). This type of squirrel is native to the eastern United States and is one of the most abundant species of squirrel in the area.
The eastern gray squirrel is a medium-sized squirrel that has a gray fur coat with tinges of black and white. It can grow up to 15 inches long and its average weight is 1 to 2 pounds. Squirrel meat is considered to be a lean, dark meat that is high in protein and low in fat. It is also a good source of B vitamins, iron, and zinc. When preparing squirrel dumplings, the meat should be cooked thoroughly before adding it to the dumpling mixture.
What are the health benefits of eating squirrel dumplings?
Squirrel dumplings are a traditional southern dish made from boiled, shredded squirrel meat, vegetables, and seasonings. They can be served with various sauces or gravy and are often served as a main dish. Eating squirrel dumplings can offer a number of health benefits, including the following.
- High in Protein: Squirrel dumplings are a great source of protein, providing around 11g of protein per serving. Protein is essential for the repair and growth of cells, which is important for healthy skin, muscles, bones, and organs.
- Rich in Iron: Squirrel dumplings are an excellent source of iron, providing nearly 20 percent of the daily recommended value. Iron helps maintain red blood cells, which helps transport oxygen throughout the body.
- Low in Fat: Squirrel dumplings are low in fat and free of trans fats, making them a healthier option than some other meats. This helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and other health problems.
- Rich in Vitamins and Minerals: Squirrel dumplings are also a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12, zinc, and selenium. These vitamins and minerals help support the immune system and can help protect against certain diseases.
- Low in Calories: Squirrel dumplings are relatively low in calories, making them a great choice for those on a calorie-restricted diet. They can also help to satisfy hunger, while still providing essential nutrients.
Overall, squirrel dumplings offer a number of health benefits, including a good source of protein, iron, vitamins and minerals, and a low calorie content. Eating them can help to improve overall health and well-being.
Are there any variations of the dish?
Yes, there are variations of squirrel dumplings that are made around the world. In some places, ground squirrel meat is mixed with onion, garlic, herbs, and spices and then stuffed into a dumpling wrapper. In other places, the squirrel meat is diced and mixed with vegetables and mushrooms, then cooked in a dumpling wrapper.
In the United States, some variations of squirrel dumplings include using ground beef instead of squirrel meat and adding vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, and celery. In addition, many recipes call for adding herbs and spices to the ground beef and vegetables to enhance the flavor.
How long does it take to cook squirrel dumplings?
Cooking squirrel dumplings can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour depending on the recipe. The dumplings are usually boiled in a pot of water for about 20 minutes, then finished off in the oven or skillet for an additional 10-15 minutes to ensure they’re cooked through.
If you’re using a skillet, you may need to add a bit of oil to prevent the dumplings from sticking to the bottom. Additionally, if the dumplings are frozen, they should be defrosted before cooking to ensure they cook evenly. Once cooked, the dumplings should be golden brown on the outside and juicy on the inside.
Are there any wild herbs or spices that go well with the dish?
Yes, there are a few wild herbs and spices that go well with squirrel dumplings. To start, a pinch of sage or a bit of rosemary can add a savory, earthy flavor to the dish. If you’re looking for something with a bit of heat, a pinch of red pepper flakes or a sprinkle of cayenne can add a nice kick.
Finally, a bit of thyme or oregano can help to round out the flavors of the dumplings. All of these herbs and spices can be found in the wild, though they may be easier to find in a grocery store. Regardless of where you source them, be sure to use them sparingly and with an eye towards balance and moderation.
What is the most traditional way to present squirrel dumplings?
The most traditional way to present squirrel dumplings is in a stew. This type of stew is usually made with chunks of squirrel meat, vegetables, and dumplings. The dumplings are made with a mixture of ground squirrel meat, onions, celery, carrots, and herbs. They are then boiled in a stew until they are cooked through and fluffy. This type of stew is a favorite among many people and is often served as a hearty meal in the colder months. It is also a great way to use up any leftover squirrel meat from a hunting trip.
The Squirrel Dumplings Recipe is a unique and delicious way to prepare squirrel. The dumplings are easy to make and combine both savory and sweet flavors to a bring a delicious and unique dish to the table. Whether served alone or as part of a larger meal, the Squirrel Dumplings Recipe is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.