Rattlesnake Pizza

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rattle snake pizza

What’s Up, Hungry People

Yes, you read that title correctly. Rattlesnake. Pizza. Hssssssssssss.

I’m still on the hunt for creative ways to whip up dishes with the haul from my Jungle Jim’s adventure a few weeks back. Next on my “out-of-the-box recipe” list? Canned rattlesnake.

canned rattlesnake

But not just any canned rattlesnake—smoked canned rattlesnake. Stumbling upon such a rarity in an Ohio grocery store is a tall order, but Jungle Jim’s isn’t your average store. It turns out, this unique ingredient is considered a delicacy in the southern states, where rattlesnakes roam free.

rattlesnake vertibrae

One unexpected fact about rattlesnake meat that caught me off guard is its boniness. Essentially, these reptiles are long ribcages. Following the can’s guidance—which recommends removing the bones for the best experience—I ended up extracting several vertebrae still connected and countless tiny ribs.

rattlesnake meat

After a meticulous bone-removal operation, I was left with about a 1/2 cup of boneless rattlesnake meat. Note to self for next time: try sourcing fresh snake meat, ideally boneless, for a smoother prep.

ingredients for rattlesnake pizza

Here’s What You Need

  • Pizza dough: Provides the base for your toppings; it’s all about that crisp yet fluffy texture.
  • Smoked rattlesnake meat: The star ingredient, adds a unique, slightly gamey flavor to your pizza.
  • Tomato sauce: Offers a tangy base layer that complements the meat and cheese.
  • Habanero salsa: Brings a fiery kick, elevating the heat level for those who dare.
  • Mild salsa: Adds a milder, sweeter heat, balancing the habanero’s intensity.
  • Sweet mini bell peppers: Introduce a sweet, crunchy contrast to the rich and spicy flavors.
  • Fresh ball mozzarella: Melts beautifully, providing creamy, gooey goodness.
  • Butter, melted: Ensures your crust turns out golden and deliciously buttery.
  • Garlic powder: Adds a robust garlicky flavor to the crust.
  • Salt & pepper: Essential seasonings that enhance the overall flavor of the pizza.
  • Fresh parsley: Adds a burst of color and a fresh, herby note to finish.
  • Cornmeal: Prevents the dough from sticking and adds a slight crunch.
  • Flour: Used for dusting and rolling out the dough, ensuring it doesn’t stick.
  • Roasted garlic: Offers a sweet, caramelized flavor that complements the smoky rattlesnake.

Let’s Cook

Prepping Your Stone and Dough : First off, we’re going to get our pizza stone nice and hot. Pop it in the oven at 425°F for a good hour before you plan to cook. This is your secret weapon for that perfect crust. Don’t forget to sprinkle some cornmeal on it to stop your masterpiece from sticking. Now, let’s get our hands dirty! Dust your surface with flour and roll out that dough until it’s about half an inch thick. Then, take your melted butter mixed with garlic powder (and a little salt and pepper for good measure) and give that dough a good brush. This is going to make the crust to die for. Poke it a few times with a fork to avoid any unwanted dough bubbles. Give it a quick bake for 5 minutes.

salsa sauce

Given this pizza’s already unconventional approach, I kicked off the sauce with a base of fresh pico de gallo. Though, if you’re in a pinch, the jarred variety serves as a spicy and convenient alternative.

salsa pizza sauce

Jungle Jim’s also delivers on the homemade pizza dough front, and I couldn’t resist snagging a few bags. As much as I adore pizza, the thought of making dough from scratch doesn’t thrill me. This pre-made dough is a happy medium—less hassle, but still homemade in spirit.

garlic bread dough

No pizza is truly complete without that garlicky, buttery crust finish. A few pokes here and there prevent it from ballooning up too much. I also give my crusts a quick pre-bake for about five minutes to ward off any potential soggy-bottoms.

homemade rattlesnake pizza

The toppings included fresh handmade mozzarella, roasted garlic, and sweet peppers, but the smoked rattlesnake really stole the show. Its flavor profile is surprisingly similar to sausage, making it a surprisingly delightful addition to the pizza. It might just be the most bizarre yet fascinating topping I’ve ever experimented with on a pizza.

Rattlesnake Pizza Tips

  • Preheat your pizza stone: A hot pizza stone ensures a crispy bottom. If you skip this step, you might end up with a soggy crust, and nobody wants that.
  • Balance your flavors: The combination of habanero and mild salsa allows you to control the heat. If you prefer a milder flavor, lean more on the mild salsa; for a fiery kick, up the habanero.
  • Don’t overload the pizza: It’s tempting to add a lot of toppings, but doing so can make your pizza soggy. Less is more, ensuring each ingredient shines through.
  • Rolling the dough: If the dough springs back while you’re rolling it out, let it rest for a few minutes. This allows the gluten to relax, making it easier to shape.
  • Roasted garlic: Roasting garlic mellows its bite and brings out its sweetness, complementing the smoky flavor of the rattlesnake. To roast garlic, simply wrap it in foil with a little oil and bake until soft and golden.
  • Checking for doneness: The best indicator that your pizza is ready is the color of the crust and cheese. Look for a golden-brown crust and bubbling, golden cheese. If the edges are done but the center needs more time, lower the oven temperature and give it a few more minutes.
rattlesnake pizza recipe

So, there you have it, Hungry People, the lowdown on making a rattlesnake pizza that might just change the way you think about pizza night. This was no ordinary culinary experiment; it was a leap into the unknown, and frankly, it paid off in spades. Who would’ve thought smoked rattlesnake could turn a simple pizza into something you’d want to brag about? Sure, it might raise a few eyebrows, but it’s all in the name of culinary adventure.

Remember, cooking is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. Next time you find yourself at Jungle Jim’s or any place that sells the unusual, maybe pick up that odd ingredient. Who knows? It might just be the secret component your kitchen escapades have been missing. Until then, keep those ovens hot and your minds open. Enjoy!

pizza rattlesnake

Rattlesnake Pizza

The Starving Chef
Experience the unique taste of rattlesnake pizza, where exotic meats meet classic Italian flair.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Preheat Pizza Stone 1 hour
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Dinner, Pizza
Cuisine American, Pizza, Southern
Servings 8

Ingredients
  

  • 16 oz pizza dough
  • 8 oz smoked rattlesnake meat
  • 6-8 cloves roasted garlic
  • ¼ cup tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup habanero salsa
  • ¼ cup mild salsa
  • 3 sweet mini bell peppers
  • 5-8 slices fresh ball mozzarella
  • 3 tablespoons butter melted
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 tablespoons fresh parsley for topping
  • ½ cup corn meal for dusting
  • ½ cup flour for dusting

Instructions
 

  • Preheat a pizza stone in the oven at 425°F for at least one hour prior to cooking the pizza for best results. Dust with cornmeal to prevent sticking.
  • Lightly flour a large clean surface and roll out the pizza dough until it's about a half-inch thick. In a small bowl, melt the butter and whisk in the garlic powder. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Brush the melted butter mixture over the pizza dough. Use a fork to pierce the dough several times to prevent bubbling. Prebake the pizza dough for five minutes on the cornmeal-dusted pizza stone.
  • In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté the habanero and mild salsas until fragrant, then stir in the tomato sauce. Season with salt and pepper, and cook until the mixture begins to bubble. Remove from the heat.
  • Carefully open the canned rattlesnake meat and remove all bones. Discard the bones and reserve the meat in a small bowl.
  • Spread the sauce mixture on the prebaked pizza dough in an even layer. Be mindful not to spread the sauce too thickly; you may have some leftover. Arrange the slices of mozzarella cheese around the pizza, then top with the rattlesnake meat, roasted garlic, and sweet mini bell peppers.
  • Bake the pizza for 10-15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the mozzarella cheese is bubbly and melted. Garnish with fresh parsley before serving. Serve hot and enjoy!
Keyword dough, pizza, pizza stone
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