Melany Vorass feeds goats in her backyard, a place where she also traps squirrels to put on the kitchen table. (97.3 KIRO FM/Rachel Belle)
Melany Vorass is conscious about her diet. The Wallingford resident is so aware of what she eats, that it, more often than not, comes from her backyard, rather than the grocery store.
Rachel Belle talked to Vorass back in August about her “weed salads,” but now her family is turning to a fluffy-tailed critter to get their protein.
“I was very fearful at first,” Vorass says of her first squirrel meal. She thought it would be tough and gamey. Instead, “It’s tender, flavorful […] a little bit like dark chicken, but more like rabbit meat, but with less fat content.”
She lures the grey squirrels into a trap using peanut butter and crackers, and they are finally caught in a battery operated trap designed to humanely trap and kill large rats.
Vorass says her rat trap is an instant death, and is much more humane then other ways that people euthanize the common critters.
As for squirrel recipes, Vorass recommends “squirrelitos” where the meat is seasoned and rolled up in a tortilla, as well as risotto rodentia, made with local white wine and mushrooms. She first got the idea to cook with squirrels after discovering a recipe, and skinning guide, in a 1980’s Joy of Cooking book.
The kitchen table isn’t the final chapter for squirrels that once scuttled about Vorass’ backyard. “I have a small pelt that I’ve salted and it will go into the cure probably in the next week or so.” She says that although she hasn’t decided what she’ll make with the pelt, she did have a Davy Crockett hat she enjoyed when she was a child.