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May 29, 2007 02:26 PM

How to de-bone a!

I am getting a 3lb rattlesnake for a BBQ. Has anyone deboned one?

Any favorite recipes..or should we just grill it?

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  1. OH MY GOSH!! I have zero experience with reptilian entrees, but would you be so kind as to report back on both the process and the final meal. I'm curious what a 3lb "rattler" goes for these days! You sound so ambitious, good luck :)

    2 Replies
    1. re: enbell

      "Reptillian entrees" - I love it - and I second enbell's requests.

      1. re: enbell

        i know quite a bit about rattlesnakes...e-mail me with any questions....ill be glad to help...

      2. Many of us southerners and southwesterners have tried rattlesnake (tastes like chicken) but has anyone tried water moccasin?

        1 Reply
        1. re: steakman55

          I have
          Taste fishy to me I think maybe because of its diet .

        2. Snake I've had was not deboned. You have to eat it like you're eating fish. I think teriyaki would be good.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sam Fujisaka

            To me rattlesnake does not taste like chicken at all. kind of like gator which tastes like veal and fish! I swear both are great, although I only had rattlesnake in ravioli of all things. Maybe you should smoke it?

            p.s I think the bones are too fine, and the flesh too dense to debone...but that is just my guess

          2. Never done it, but I'd give it a red hot go.

            Slit down the length of the belly, remove intestines, wash. cut behind the head and remove downwards, (hopefully) taking the spine with you. Use tweezers to remove any remaining fine bones.

            Let us know how it goes!!!

            (I've eaten it before and it was de-boned, rolled up in a spiral, placed in a cast iron camp oven and cooked over coals.. T'was very tasty)

            1. Here you go ...

              That site says ...
              There are two ways to cook rattlesnake meat: De-boned, or with the bones still intact. If you cook it with the bones intact you will have to deal with them while eating it. This is no big deal really, and in fact many “just the snake” type recipes (baked snake, southern fired snake, etc.) call for the snake to be cut into pieces and cooked with the bones."

              It doesn't sound like you are going for chili where the meat must be removed first. The site tells you to simmer in water for an hour.

              Then it depends on how from-scratch the snake is ... If it is intact here's a link for dressing a snake ... they gotta be kidding ...

              After removing head, rattles, and entrails they say ...
              "drop in fresh cold brine water (either cover container or be sure to stand by it because the snake will crawl out of water) ... When body of snake has stopped crawling, remove and wash in fresh cold water, chop in lengths 3 or 4 inch long.

              NOTE: Be sure to dispose of head immediately as they can bite for several hours."

              Some snake recipes ...

              5 Replies
              1. re: rworange

                now I am thinking the southern fried sounds good. I would soak in buttermilk though. now I woneridering: where can I get rattlesnake and who on earth do I know htat would eat it with me? It does sound like you can it prepare it on the bbq with the bones though, doesnt it?

                1. re: lyn

                  Sounds that way. Here's a BBQ snake recipe

                  I haven't found anything on snake etiquette in terms of eating and discarding the bones. Where is Emily Post when you need her?

                  From Chow ... with a pic of a skinned snake ... looks like a big chicken neck ... also tips on how to choose your rattler and flavor affitinies ...

                  "Flavor Affinities:Ancho chiles, bacon, corn, cumin, garlic, honey, onions, poblano chiles, tarragon, thyme, tomatoes."

                  I think you could check at Chinese markets. I got interested in the subject of snakes when someone reported about snake soup earlier this year on the SF board.

                  There was an old report about someone spotted snake at a local Chinese fish market

                  If all else fails

                  1. re: lyn

                    My dear friends, who are developing a large subdivision in Wickenburg, Arizona, have killed seven already this season. Knowing them as well as I do, I can confidently say they will give you all the rattlesnake meat your lil 'ol heart desires :--)

                  2. re: rworange

                    The head can bite for hours after decapitation? And it can crawl out of the water without it's head? That sounds like horror movie cuisine!

                    I can't wait to hear how this turned out. Sounds wacky and wonderful.

                    1. re: ballulah

                      True about the head. At a friend's ranch in south Texas, I exhibited more curiosity about rattlers than shooting quail, and the ranch foreman took me out after supper when the desert comes alive, and he captured a 50 incher with the butt of a shotgun and had me carefully pick it up with a firm grip below the head, and the face to face hissing showdown began. They are very powerful animals. After that adrenaline rush, we cut the head off and Smitty advised me never to go near that head. 2 or 3 hours later after the rattling stopped I eviscerated the snake and the heart was still beating. Rattlers kill a lot of expensive hunting dogs in quail country there. Smitty would often go out at twilight and shoot a few -he had a freezer full of them - but you really can't keep up.