Raccoon Stew and more
“First you put the whole skinned and gutted coon in a pot a water, with carrots, celery, onions, garlic and seasonings then cook it for a couple of hours on the stove. Then you put it in one of them there dutch ovens, and this is the secret”…….as he looked around to make sure no one else was listening….”you stuff the inside of the coon where its inards was with canned sweet “taters” and then pour the tater juice over the meat, and then roast it for a couple more hours in the oven. By that time the meat’ll be fallin’ off the bones. It’s the best dang thang you ever tasted!”
Of course ‘you are what you eat’ applies to what the raccoon ate too! So next time you see raccoons eating trash or a dead possum reflect if that’s what you want to eat also. Roadkill cuisine has it’s drawbacks.
The Joy of Cooking, 1931
Raccoon was once so popular that it was featured in that old standard, The Joy of Cooking, in its first edition from 1931. At least it did according to Wikipedia. A check of the actual book reveals no such recipe, however, giving you another harsh lesson in the fallibility of the internet when it comes to information difficult to verify.
Raccoons, 1491, and American Indians
How often did the ‘typical’ North American Indian eat raccoon before the invasion of Europeans? If the answer to this question is out there, it’s beyond Google to find it. Surely some anthropology student somewhere wrote a dissertation on this.
Raccoon isn’t found at Costco. It can be found for sale here and there, usually by a trapper or hunter, failing under the same regulations for sale as deer or other wild game. And there are still events where you can get raccoon, like this public barbecue near Memphis TN.
Roast Raccoon with Stuffing
Try this classic raccoon recipe instead of turkey next Thanksgiving and just imagine the smiles you’ll get around the table when they hear what the surprise is for dinner! And here’s a step by step guide how:
~ 5 – 7lb raccoon, dressed, not cut up
~ 1/2 lb sausage meat
~ 3 tbsp butter
~ 1 onion, chopped
~ 1 cup chopped celery
~ 2 tsp salt
~ 1/2 tsp pepper
~ 1/4 cup cream
~ 2 cups corn bread crumbs
~ 2 tsp sage
~ 3 tbsp chopped parsley
~ 1 tsp marjoram
~ 1/2 tsp mace
~ 1/4 cup orange juice
~ 1 cup red wine
In a skillet, saute the onion and celery in the butter.
Add the sausage meat and cook until brown. Drain off the fat.
In a bowl mix the sausage mixture, cream, corn bread crumbs, sage, parsley, marjoram, mace and orange juice together thoroughly.
Salt and pepper the raccoon inside and out.
Stuff the raccoon and close up the belly cavity. Place on a rack in a roasting pan and cook for 45 minutes per pound at 300 degrees.
Turn over when half done.
Baste frequently with the wine and the pan juices when they cook out.
Serve and Enjoy!