Saturday, June 23, 2012

Squirrel sauce for pasta

I usually jump at the chance to eat something new, so when I noticed some grey squirrel meat for sale at Edinburgh's Stockbridge Market I decided to give it a try. It looked fairly rabbity, so I decided to give it the same treatment and make a squirrel version of the classic Tuscan pasta dish, pappardelle sulla lepre (pappardelle with hare sauce). It was good - less meat than rabbit but more flavour. I even made some fresh pasta to go with it but, like a great klutz, managed to delete all the photos! Fortunately I had this one in my library:

2 grey squirrels, quartered
500ml red wine
6 cloves
olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
3 tinned tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 tbsps tomato puree
1/2 tsp salt
black pepper


  1. Marinade the squirrel with the red wine and cloves overnight.
  2. The next day, fry the onion in plenty of olive oil, and when nearly done add the finely chopped garlic.
  3. Add the squirrel together with its marinading liquid, bring to a boil, turn to minimum and simmer gently for 2 hours, until the squirrel is very tender.
  4. Remove the squirrel from the pan, set aside and allow to cool.
  5. Meanwhile, add the tomatoes, tomato puree and salt to the pan, bring to a boil and simmer gently until you have a thick sauce.
  6. Remove the squirrel meat from the bone (it's easiest just to pick it off with your fingers), return to the pan and cook slowly for another 5 minutes. Season with freshly ground black pepper before serving.

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