Biscuits and gravy is my absolute favorite breakfast. I grew up in Virginia and while I don’t consider myself to be particularly southern, I did end up with a few very southern tastes. There’s something about a nice buttery biscuit smothered in a mess of gravy that just can’t be beat.
This week I went out east a bit onto the plains and brought home a big fox squirrel. Mostly I hunt in the mountains and that means smaller, stronger flavored pine squirrels. So I thought I’d try out something new with this one.
Now there is one issue with this recipe: fried squirrel can be pretty tough. The squirrel I cooked up for this recipe wasn’t too bad, but I’ve have some pretty bad ones in the past. One solution to this is to parboil the squirrel before you fry it. I have read suggestions of parboiling for as long as two hours. The other option is the pressure cooker. It accomplishes the same task in about ten minutes. They’re great for any tough meat. But don’t overdo it, you don’t want the meat quite falling off the bone before you put it in the frying pan.
Fried Squirrel with Biscuits and Country Gravy
1-2 fox or grey squirrels, cut into serving pieces
salt + pepper
½ stick of butter
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ onion, chopped very fine
3 mushrooms, chopped very fine
~3 cups milk
For the Biscuits:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
2 tsp white sugar
¼ tsp salt
½ stick butter, cut into small cubes
1 cup milk
For the Squirrel and Gravy:
Put the butter and oil in a skillet over medium heat to melt the butter.
Pour around ½ cup flour onto a plate. Add salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, cumin, and ground red pepper to create a seasoned flour mixture. Quickly rinse the squirrel pieces to lightly moisten them and then dredge them in the flour.
Add the squirrel to the pan and cook until golden brown, then remove.
Add another tsp or two of flour to the pan and make a roux. Add the onions and mushrooms as well. Once the flour is slightly browned and beings giving off a nutty aroma, begin adding milk. Add the milk slowly, stirring as you do so, and let it reduce. Continue adding milk until you’ve reached your desired volume and consistency of gravy. Add salt and pepper to taste.
For the Biscuits:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Add the butter pieces and work them into the mixture with a fork until they are pea-sized or smaller. Add milk and mix.
Drop the batter onto a lightly greased baking sheet.
Bake until peaks begin to brown, around 10-12 minutes.