Georgia Pellegrini approached me last spring to let me know she had a book coming out later in the year, and asked me if I would be interested in getting an advanced copy of it. The opportunity sounded great, but then I realized something – this book was slated to be called Girl Hunter. At that point I remained intrigued, yet a little bit scared. What was I going to get out of a book with that title?
As it turns out, I got a whole lot out of it. Well, at least I got a lot out of it until I lost it one day while hiking through some thick creek bottoms on a whitetail hunt. Girl Hunter is part memoir, part adventure, part cook book. It is something altogether unique and refreshing. The best thing I can say about Girl Hunter is that after losing my advanced copy, which I was only half of the way through, I couldn’t wait until this day to have a chance to get another copy. Girl Hunter comes out today!
Girl Hunter contains many wonderful stories of hunting in pursuit of food, but my favorite aspect of the book is that each chapter ends with some delicious recipes. For example, take a look at this…
Buttermilk Fried Rabbit
Serves 4 – Also try: chicken, turkey, squirrel, dove, upland game birds, or any other young game meat
1 young cottontail rabbit, cut into serving pieces
2 cups buttermilk
1 medium-size onion, sliced
3 garlic cloves, diced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried tarragon, or 1 teaspoon each of your three favorite dried herbs
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon cayenne
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
Salt and pepper
2 to 3 cups grape seed or vegetable oil
1) Soak the rabbit overnight in the buttermilk, along with the onion, garlic, herbs, paprika, and 1 teaspoon of the cayenne.
2) Drain in colander, leaving some herbs on the rabbit. In a large resealable plastic bag or in a large bowl, mix the flour with the garlic and onion powder and remaining 2 teaspoons of cayenne, as well as a pinch of salt and pepper. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat until a pinch of flour starts to sizzle when dropped in the hot oil, but not so hot as for the oil to be smoking.
3) Place the rabbit pieces in the bag with the flour mixture and shake until thoroughly coated. Do this in small batches, dredging just enough rabbit to fit in the pan at one time.
4) Add the rabbit to the skillet and fry on one side for about 10 minutes, until golden brown, then use tongs to turn the pieces over and fry for another 10 minutes, again until golden brown. Be careful to keep the oil hot enough to fry the rabbit, but not so much that it burns.
5) Remove the rabbit from the skillet and place it on a wire rack over paper towels. Season immediately with salt and pepper to taste, to help preserve the crispiness for the table. This is good served immediately or also good cold for lunch the next day.
This book has made me want to hunt more, to pursue different species, and ultimately to try new things! Am I a Girl Hunter?…No. But, I sure have appreciated learning from one!
For more information about Girl Hunter, please visit GeorgiaPellegrini.com.