Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Eastern Diamondback

Two weeks ago I moved to Ft. Myers, Florida, where I'm now living and working on a tropical agriculture farm run by ECHO (echonet.org). The farm exists to equip people and organizations who are working with poor farmers in developing countries. I'll be an intern here for the next year. I'll write more on that subject in a future post, but that'll suffice for now as a backdrop to this post.

Last night I had just decided to cook up some tomato-spaghetti-chaya soup for dinner and was trying to find something to make as a side when our CEO, Stan, drove up to the intern housing in a golf cart. He had a pail with him, and next thing I knew he was lifting the end of a long, snake-like rope out of the pail. It kept coming for quite a while, like when Mary Poppins pulled that floor lamp out of her carpet bag. It actually did turn out to be a snake, a 5' behemoth rattler that the neighbor had found in her chicken pen. Her organic, free-range chicken pen. She called Stan, who shot it in the head and was now headed home to skin his trophy. He was kind enough to offer us interns the carcass after he was done skinning and gutting it.

Stan and Brandon (a fellow intern) with the snake:

Eastern Diamondbacks are among the most dangerous snakes in the US.

It had three fangs!

Anyway, obviously, our dinner problem was solved. We chopped it up, dipped it in goat milk and duck eggs, and then rolled it in seasoned flour before frying it in a pan:

Snakes aren't very meaty and the meat is a little tough (or at least, tough to scrape off of the ribs), but this one sure had a mild and delicious taste. Though perhaps we have its diet of organic free-range chickens to thank for that!


  1. Soo snake tastes like chicken?

  2. Well, I'm not sure, but fried snake does taste a lot like fried chicken!