Butter “Chicken” Pizzas with Tandoori Squirrel

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This is one for those who get all squirrely at the mention of pizza!

This recipe came about after a summer battle royale with the squirrels in my garden. They ate nearly everything I planted, no matter what types of squirrel repellant I employed to get rid of them. Eve...

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Butter “Chicken” Pizzas with Tandoori Squirrel

For a simplified version of this recipe, simply exchange the marinade for store bought tandoori sauce, or tandoori spice mixed with 125mL plain yogurt, and the pizza sauce for store bought butter chicken sauce. www.theintrepideater.com
Servings 4
Cook Time 2 hrs 10 mins


For the Marinade

  • 2 squirrels (I used Eastern Greys) cut into 6 pieces each: legs, saddle, and ribs/neck
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 tsp Kashmiri chili powder or Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp dried methi leaves (optional)
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt

For the Sauce

  • 1 1/2 tbs butter (split)
  • 1/2 onion, peeled and chopped small
  • 1/8 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/8 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/8 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp Kashmiri chili powder or Paprika
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely minced
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup half and half (18%) cream

For the Pizza

  • 4 pieces naan bread, preferably garlic naan
  • 1/8 red onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1/8 cup cashews, chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, grated (more if you like it cheesy)
  • 1/8 cup aloo bhujia chaat (optional)
  • 1 handful cilantro leaves, picked
  • 1 tbs mayonnaise
  • 1 tbs plain yogurt
  • juice from 1/2 a lime
  • 1/2 lime, cut into wedges or cheeks for garnish


  • DAY BEFORE: Combine all of the marinade ingredients (except for the vegetable oil) well and transfer to a bowl or ziplock bag. Drop in the squirrel pieces and make sure the marinade completely covers all surface area. Refrigerate and let marinate for at least 8 hours.
  • DAY OF: Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread out the vegetable oil in a cast iron pan or casserole dish. Place the squirrel pieces in the pan, then spoon all of the leftover marinade on top of the pieces. Bake in the oven for about 2 hours, or until the squirrel begins to turn golden and the marinade dissipates.
  • Take the squirrel out of the oven and let cool. Crank up the heat in the oven to 450°F.
  • While the squirrel is cooling, prepare the sauce. In a pot or frying pan, melt 1/2 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for about 6-8 minutes until they’re soft and starting to pick up some colour. Add the spices, ginger, and garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add the tomato paste and stir everything well to combine. Cook for another 2 minutes, stirring regularly. Pour in the cream and reduce the heat to low. Stir it in and keep cooking until the sauce has thickened, another 1-3 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter. Stir it in until it completely dissolves. Set the sauce aside for the time being.
  • Now that the squirrel has cooled, use your fingers to pull off all of the meat, leaving it in small shredded bite-sized chunks. Try to make sure there are no bones left in the meat. Set aside the bones to make stock if you desire, or dispose of them.
  • Arrange the 4 pieces of naan bread in front of you. Split the sauce between them and spread it around each piece with the back of a spoon. Now add the squirrel meat, onions, and cashews evenly between the 4 pizzas. Top with cheese, and put in the oven directly on the upper rack. I like to put a sheet pan underneath to catch any dripping cheese. Cook for 6-10 minutes (depending on the thickness of naan bread and personal oven temperature), keeping a close eye on the pizzas so they don’t burn.
  • While the pizzas are cooking, combine the mayo, yogurt, and lime juice in a bowl, or better yet, a squeeze bottle. Once the pizzas are crispy on the bottom and nice and melty on top, remove them from the oven.
  • Top the pizzas with the aloo bhujia if using, and cilantro leaves, then drizzle the mayo-yogurt sauce over them. Enjoy!
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Other

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