It's that time of year again — Freer Rattlesnake Roundup time... the time of year when everyone starts bragging about eating rattlesnake.

Well, in case you come up on some fresh rattlesnake meat (I don't know from where... maybe your compadre will surprise you out of the blue and bring you some), here's a recipe to do it up right.

DEEP FRIED RATTLESNAKE

1 rattlesnake, cut into 3-inch pieces

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1/4 cup oil

1 tsp. salt

Fritter Batter

Oil

Marinate meat in refrigerator overnight in lemon juice, 1/4 cup oil, and salt. Baste meat occasionally. Wipe meat dry. Dip pieces in Fritter Batter. Deep-fat fry in heavy skillet.

Fritter Batter

1 egg

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup plus 1 to 2 tbsp. self-rising flour

Beat together eggs and milk; stir in flour. Let batter rest about 20 minutes. Batter should be quite runny, like fresh cream, when used. Only a thin batter will fry crisp.