Vernon Summerlin

While it’s still warm outside, let’s go to the grill one more time for some savory crappie fillets and, in honor of squirrel season, we’ll throw a few of those on the barbie too.

Grilled Crappie with Butter Sauce
2-3 slab crappie fillets per person
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Lemon pepper
Salt to taste
3 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Combine onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, lemon pepper and salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle on both sides of fillets. Prepare butter sauce by combining butter, garlic and parsley in a small saucepan. Once butter has melted remove from heat. Preheat grill for medium-high heat. Place fish on lightly oiled grate, cook for about 5 minutes. Turn fish and coat with butter sauce. Cook for 5 more minutes. Once fish flakes easily, remove from heat, drizzle with olive oil and serve.

Crappie Barbecue
2-3 slab crappie fillets per person
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup salad oil
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup catsup
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Combine Worcestershire, paprika, salad oil, vinegar, catsup, sugar, salt and pepper. Place fish in sauce mixture for 30 minutes before grilling. Grill fillets 3 to 4 inches from hot coals on well greased grate for about 5 minutes per side or until the fillets test done. Brush often with sauce while barbecuing.

Bacon Wrapped Squirrel
Nothing says “autumn” better than the taste of squirrel. Little bushy-butts are full of nuts and ready for your .22. Pop enough of the critters so you can serve a couple to each person to gather around your table (never mind if you have leftovers, they’ll still be good re-warmed). Cut the meat into portions that suits you. I cut off the legs and sever the back into two pieces. Bushy-butts don’t have much tenderloin but the entire back is tenderer than the legs.

Squirrel cut into serving pieces (two squirrels per person)
Beer (Non-alcoholic or not)
Garlic powder
Pepper
Salt
Minced onion
Hickory smoked bacon

Soak the parts in beer for 2-3 hours. Remove and drain. Sprinkle to taste with garlic powder, pepper, salt and the minced onion. Wrap each leg with bacon. Secure with toothpicks. Place on hot grill. Cook over medium heat until cooked through.

Easy Squirrel BBQ
4-5 squirrels cut into serving pieces
Original Allegro marinade
Garlic powder
Salt
Pepper
Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning
Your favorite BBQ sauce (or use the sauce in the BBQ crappie recipe)

Place meat in a large Ziploc bag and cover with the marinade. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. Overnight is better. Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with foil. Make the foil big enough so you can fold over the top and seal. Place the meat on the foil and season with garlic powder, salt, pepper and Creole seasoning. Wrap the foil over the top and seal. Bake for 2 hours at 350 degrees.
While squirrel is cooking, pre-heat your grill to medium heat. When squirrel is done, remove it from foil and place on oiled grill grate. Baste with BBQ sauce. Grill over medium heat until sauce starts to get sticky. Do not overcook to prevent the meat from becoming tough. Remove from grill and serve with your favorite side dishes.