3-4 squirrelsskinned but not quartered
2-3 quarts chicken stock or water with a bay leaf and a tablespoon of salt
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup vegetable shortening or butter
½ cup cold milk
Start the recipe well in advance of meal time (the night before is fine, but the 3 to 4 hours it takes to simmer the squirrels is long enough) by making the dumplings. Whisk the salt and baking powder into the flour then cut in the shortening with a fork until you have pea-sized bits mixed throughout the flour. Gradually stir in milk, a bit at a time, until the mixture forms a smooth dough. Sprinkle a work surface with flour and roll out the dough into a 1/8-inch-thick sheet. Cover with a clean towel and set the dough aside to rest overnight or until the squirrel is done.
Simmer the squirrels in stock or salted water for 3 to 4 hours. Remove the cooked squirrels from the pot and set them aside to cool. Skim off any discolored foam from the top of the stock. If desired, the stock can be filtered through a piece of cheesecloth to remove any extra bits. Return the stock to the heat and bring to a light boil.
Once the squirrel is cool enough to handle, pick the meat from the bones and add it back to the pot.
Uncover your rested dumpling dough and, using a pizza cutter, cut it into 1-inch by 2-inch dumplings.
Drop the dumplings into the boiling stock and simmer for another 10 minutes until they are cooked through, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.