Canned goods are always a good idea. Y'know, for The End of the World and occasions like that. So how can you add some interest to your survival meals? With canned edible smoked rattlesnake of course!
Canned rattlesnake is not just a novelty gift to display on your kitchen shelf. It is indeed edible. Rattlesnake is a lean meat with plenty of protein, but it also has a lot of bones which seems to be the biggest downside of this exotic meat.
If you plan on smoking your wild caught rattlesnake yourself, well first, congratulations on your bravery! Second, wild game experts recommend soaking the meat in milk overnight to remove any gamy flavor or smell. The meat itself is mild and without much flavor so use a rub or marinade. Smoke at a very low temperature over hickory or mesquite, checking frequently because rattlesnake is already low in moisture. Leave the ends out of the foil so they get crispy.
If snake catching is not your thing, you can always go the canned route. Mountain American Jerky sells a can that contains 4 oz of smoked rattlesnake meat and 3.5 oz of rich seasoned broth. Pour the broth over rice and make sure to remove all the tiny snake bones before eating.
Mountain American Jerky is proud that their canned rattlesnake contains no MSG, no nitrates, and no growth hormones. I wouldn't want to meet a snake that took growth hormones.
Customer reviews include the predictable "...tastes like (smoked) chicken..." as well as, "...there were a lot of bones..." and "...more bones than meat and a lot of water..." and "very little meat to eat and a lot of bones." You get the picture. So too many bones seems to be the most common bone to pick (pun intended) consumers have with smoked canned rattlesnake.
Meat Maniac is another website that will give you a taste of the exotic without trekking into the wilderness. This is a larger can (7.5 oz) of pure smoked rattlesnake meat. Meat Maniac suggests adding it to soup stock, or making a gravy from the au jus, adding meat, and serving over pasta, rice, or potatoes.
Newport Jerky Company not only has canned rattlesnake but an awe (and eww) inspiring selection of exotic meats and jerky. They make great gifts for the outdoorsman or just for the adventurous eater. You can find frog legs, alligator, and wild boar summer sausage.
I was particularly intrigued by Newport Jerky's Road Kill sausage. A combination of wild boar, venison, elk, antelope, beef, and rabbit are blended together and hickory-smoked to perfection for a flavor like no other. Disclaimer! These animals weren't really found roadside, but the name is pretty funny. They also carry lots of fun marinades, rubs, and seasonings too with names like Slap Ya Mama, Butt Rub, and Choke Your Chicken.
While you may not find smoked rattlesnake being prepared in New York City restaurants, America is a big country and Walmart actually sells a canned Edible Smoked Rattlesnake. If the word edible is included, I'm already a little nervous.
Smoked Rattlesnake Stew
Stew is one of the best way to use rattlesnake meat because of the tenderizing and liquid. For stew you'll need 8 oz smoked rattlesnake meat and a quart of lamb broth. Use all of your favorite stew vegetables including parsnip and corn. Chop some jalapeno peppers for heat and flavor and your favorite dried herbs. Smoked paprika and fresh corn kernels browned in a little cognac are the secret ingredients in this stew recipe.
You'll be simmering this stew for about an hour to get that thicker consistency. The snake meat will stay moist and absorb all the flavors. Get the step by step of this recipe here.
Invite some guests over without telling them exactly what kind of stew you're serving. Slam that empty can of smoked rattlesnake meat down on the table and laugh your most demonic laugh.