The first time I saw an Idahoan cooking up a species of wild marmot was at Balanced Rock Park in the summer of 2019. I passed by the campsite in my kayak in disbelief as a marinade was being applied to the skinned critter's carcass.

Related to the groundhog, the woodchuck can be found in Idaho along with its relative the rock chuck, although woodchucks are more common in southern Canada and the eastern United States. Prior to moving to the state in 2016, I had never heard of a rock chuck. I do see them just about every time I visit Dierkes Lake or the park at Shoshone Falls.

I've never eaten any type of chuck, but it's something I might try if prepared in the right way. A stew would be one of those types of meals I would give it go. (via has a woodchuck stew recipe I came across the other day. It looks pretty incredible. You can substitute rock chuck since the animal is found more abundantly in Idaho.

Obviously, first and foremost, you have to know how to properly skin and clean the marmot. Removing the glands and cubing the meat comes first, and then it's all about adding ingredients and spices and letting the chucks marinade overnight. You can use barbeque sauce, white wine, cajun seasoning, or any other type of sauce you like if you want to stray slightly from the recipe.

The recipe also calls for vinegar, celery, onion, cloves, salt, pepper, and flour. A boiling pot of water is all you need the day after the meat sits overnight in the fridge. Slice some french bread up, and you've got an inexpensive meal that will stick to the bones.

The video below will help you catch one of these little rascals. Bon Appetit!

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