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Roasted Raccoon With Sweet Potatoes

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Mark Olis, the editor of Predator Xtreme magazine, recently did a series on trappingtanning and cooking raccoons. Being fairly new here at Grand View Outdoors, I was roped into — ahem, invited — to taste this critter. I’ll admit that I was a bit nervous to consume raccoon, considering the first thing that comes to mind is roadkill. But once I got over my own inhibitions and took a bite, I was pleasantly surprised.

Parboiling the coon made the meat tender, and roasting it with sweet potatoes offered a hint of sweetness to the dish. The parts that were submerged in the liquid from the meat and potatoes cooking down were the best — super juicy and fall-off-the-bone good. Keep in mind that this recipe was kept simple so the flavor of the meat would shine through. Overall, if I were in a position where I depended on varmints like this to survive — as some of our predecessors did — I’d say I was eating large. That said, I’d still choose venison or even squirrel over coon any day of the week.

Roasted Raccoon With Sweet Potatoes

  • 1 skinned and dressed raccoon (torso and hind legs)
  • Preferred seasoning to taste (salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, steak seasoning, etc.); measure out according to your preference
  • 6-8 peeled sweet potatoes roughly chopped in large chunks, enough to line the bottom of your roasting pan

First, trim the fat from the carcass and removed the scent glands from each arm and leg. They will look and feel like small marbles or peas. Next, soak the meat in white vinegar for a few minutes or, depending on your taste, overnight. This will tenderize the meat and cut down on the gaminess.

Then, sprinkle with seasoning and parboil or pressure cook the raccoon meat for 30 minutes or until tender.

Next, peel and chop enough sweet potatoes to line the bottom of an oven roasting pan (approximately six to eight potatoes).

When the raccoon is done parboiling, remove from the pressure cooker or crock pot. Line your roasting pan with the sweet potatoes and place the coon on top. Season again, then cover with foil and bake for about an hour at 350 degrees. The meat should fall off the bone when it’s done cooking.

Lastly, serve it up and enjoy!

Featured photo: Grilled bobcat with Memphis-style barbecue rub; Credit: Keith Sutton.

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