Are you wondering can you eat gophers? are they eatable?
Well, if yes, you are just one of the many people who ask themselves this question without getting an absolute answer.
Can You Eat Gophers?
Yes gophers are eatable! Therefore, if you’ve been wondering whether it’s safe to make one part of your recipe for dinner, it makes for a delectable dish!
But for the sake of the uninitiated, let’s begin by looking at what exactly gophers are. So, what are gophers? How do they look like? Where can you get them? Well, those are just a few of the many things we are going to look at shortly.
While you may have heard most people call them Gophers, these beings are called pocket gophers. The Pocket in their name come from the fur-lined cheek pouches these animals use to transport food.
They come in as many as 34 species. However, there’s no much variation between most of these species. In fact, you may not tell the difference between some species unless you examine them keenly.
The sizes of the species differ slightly, but they are all within 5-14 inches long and weighing about 5 pounds on average. A typical pocket gopher has soft fur, a flat head, small eyes and ears, thick whiskers, and a short tail that measure four inches long on average.
And as small as they may appear in the look, these little rodents can quickly ravage a lawn. The long claws and super-sharp teeth give lawn owners a nightmare once they set their minds on excavating underground burrows and tunnels.
Are Gophers Edible?
If pocket gophers are eatable, then they definitely are edible! A bit confusing, right? It doesn’t have to be— eatability is with regard to taste. Edibility means it’s safe and fit to eat, whether with taste or not!
Hence, just as they enjoy feasting on carrots, shrubs, seeds, garlic, tubers, sweet potatoes, bulbs, onions, grass, and almost all other types of plants that grow in your garden, they can as well turn into a delicacy!
What Does A Gopher Taste Like?
Now that they are edible, the next thing you may want to know is what these beings taste like. Answer? They taste like chicken! Actually, some people claim that it wouldn’t be easy to convince you that you aren’t eating chicken!
But again, some don’t find chicken to provide a sufficient description of how pocket gophers taste. When eating a gopher, you may think that you were served with a plate containing a mixture of chicken, fish, pork, and beef.
Nevertheless, just like with any other type of meat, one thing to keep in mind is that the resulting taste will depend on a few factors. These factors include one’s culinary skills, cooking procedure, ingredients, and perhaps the species.
So, Are Gophers Tasty?
Well, do you find chicken, fish, pork, and beef meats tasty? Of course no one would ever give NO for an answer to this question. Pocket gophers are just as tasty as any of the other common kinds of meat.
How To Prepare Gopher To Eat?
Since we just found out that pocket gophers are edible and tasty, some of us may find the temptation of trying out this new recipe almost irresistible.
Fortunately, gopher preparation is one of the most straightforward tasks! Below are some of the steps you can use once you successfully trap one!
1: Begin With The Head
Some may find the first step to be the most distasteful task. However, one thing to bear in mind is that removing the head is a common step for all meat products. You should find this easy even with a standard chef knife.
2: Time To Get Rid Of The Internal Organs
Once you remove the head, the next thing you want to do away with is the gut and other internal organs. The genital opening serves as a perfect spot to begin the cutting. Once you sink the knife, drive it slowly upwards all through to the neck.
3: Remove The Skin
Since it’s a small being, you may not need a knife for this step. Just pull the loose skin beginning from the neck down to the limbs. This process should reveal smooth muscles and bare claws, which you can either remove or leave.
4: Spit Your Gopher
Once you get rid of the skin, one step you shouldn’t skip is washing the meat. Like any other type of food, ensure that you use running water for this process.
After washing the meat, find a way of cooking it over the fire. You’ll need a spit for this process.
The spit needs to be sharp at one end. This way, you will find it easy to pierce through the thickest parts of your meat.
For the small size, a single spit should work just fine. However, if you love meat as I do, I recommend that you use two. In addition, the spits should be from living branches since those from deadwood can catch fire burn down in the process.
5: Time To Cook
After you have the meat ready for the fire, it’s time to place it over it. If you can get coals, they will work superbly for the job. If not, a small fire should work just fine. Nonetheless, one thing to avoid is placing the meat in the flame.
You want the meat to cook evenly. To get such results, have it positioned high enough over the fire. Constant mild heat will eventually get the job done.
Excessive heat makes the meat cook unevenly and even causes it to dry out quickly. That’s not what you want, not after all the work you’ve done!
You may need to be a little patient if at all you want to enjoy the unique delicacy. If you aren’t sure whether the meat is cooked thoroughly, you can check it keenly to see whether you’ll see blood or uncooked areas.
6: Time To Feast
Once you cook it until it’s evenly cooked, it’s time to eat it up! If the meat is well-cooked, you don’t need a meat knife for the job- you should pull segments with ease!
Although there still exists a hot debate on whether or not gophers are eatable, they actually are! Some of us have tried them out and they make for a great delicacy.
Surprisingly, they are easy to prepare for almost anyone! You can cook it alone over the fire or prepare it alongside other ingredients like other meat products.