• Another 100 Days of Good Karma: Day 216 (Mindy’s First Crawfish)

     

    keepcalmanddonteatthestraightones

    Thursday, February 12, 2015

    Run/ Walk/ Bike/ Elliptical (Today:  2.50 miles;  Running Total: 170.44 miles)

    Day 216 of *Another* 100 Days of Good Karma.

    Justin and I took Mindy to experience a traditional living-along-The-Gulf meal. A meal you can only get in the springtime and early summer: Crawfish.

    Crawfish season is a big deal here in Houston.

    If you’re unfamiliar with crawfish (or crayfish or crawdads or mud bugs or whatever you want to call them) allow me to educate you.

    This is a crawfish.

    This is a crawfish.

    Eating crawfish is an exercise in brutality.

    Crawfish live in the mud in freshwater bayous (hence the loving term ‘mud bugs’). So before you eat them you have to ‘purge’ them of all the dirt inside them.

    While still alive the crawfish are gathered in a pool of water and a liberal amount of salt is added to the water. This induces the crawfish to vomit up all the dirt inside them.

    (Mmmm. Purging.)

    After purging the crawfish are then boiled like lobster. Namely, alive.

    After the crawfish have died horribly (seriously, you can hear them scratching at the inside of the pot), their scalding and seasoned carcasses are dumped five pounds at a time in front of the guest.

    This is what a tray of crawfish looks like.  The corn and potatoes are boiled in the same spices as the crawfish for extra eating enjoyment.  Beer optional.

    This is what a tray of crawfish looks like. The corn and potatoes are boiled in the same spices as the crawfish for extra eating enjoyment. Beer optional.

    To eat a crawfish you dismember the tail from the head, peel the shell off the tail and eat the meat from the tail. If you want an extra kick of spices (and if you’re feeling brave) you can suck the juices from the head. The remains of the shell, head and claws are discarded into a bucket that sits at the table.

    (A tip: if the tail is curled, then the crawfish was alive while it was boiled. If the tail is straight, it was dead. Don’t eat the dead ones.)

    Justin is a crawfish eating machine. He can expertly peel the crawfish, suck the juices from head, eat the tail, discard the remains, and then go back for more before I’ve even managed to get the tail off. Mindy peeked into the bucket at his elbow and declared it crawfish mass murder.

    I like crawfish, and I’ll eat them, but I’m slow and, frankly, I don’t like to work that hard for my food.

    I told this to Mindy as she held a crawfish between two fingers, her face horror stricken.

    Hannah smiled and said, “It’s terrible. But it’s yummy.”  Then she grabbed another crawfish from Justin’s tray.

    “You know,” Mindy said, “Back home these are a sign of a water quality problem.”

    I shrugged. “Here we just eat ‘em.”

    She eyed the crawfish on her plate skeptically. “But…”

    Hannah held up her partially peeled crawfish for Mindy to see. “Just eat it!”

    Peer pressure is powerful and Mindy finally caved. She threatened to vomit the entire time, but she caved.

    After she peeled and ate her crawfish (in case you’re wondering, no, she did not suck the head) she vowed to contact PETA and start a Crawfish Advocate group here in Houston.

    Justin said, “I’m pretty sure you’ll be the only member.”

    Today’s silver lining: Mindy ate her crawfish.

    I don’t think she’ll be back for more, but do I admire her food bravery.

    What’s your silver lining today?  I love comments!

    Don’t want to leave a comment, but have something you want to share?  Send me an email at gettingthewordswrong(at)gmail(dot)com.

    xoxo,
    Meghan

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10 Responsesso far.

  1. Minute (Eleanor) Terris Powell says:

    I won’t touch the either, ;they are just too much trouble for that little bit of meat……stick to crab legs!! Kudos to Mindy for at least trying them.

  2. Leslee says:

    LMAO! I feel Mindys pain, kinda my reaction when first moved to TX!
    Up North they were bait! Sheesh!

  3. Kristel says:

    Hannah’s “yummy” comment reminded me of the kids back in Nova Scotia where Chuck is from.

    We went home for Christmas one year and it’s lobster season during December so the Pugh family tradition is to get a home depot size bucket of lobsters from a local lobster fisherman and eat them all in one night. That year Chuck’s uncle Tommy was working on a lobster boat so we got them for $3/lb. The lobsters are all banded with rubber bands on their claws so they can’t eat each other or pinch you. The kids in the family had them all spread out on the kitchen floor playing with the live lobsters. Meanwhile, Chuck brings a huge pot of water to a boil then he asks the kids for some lobsters. Into the pot they go and suddenly one of the kids is crying “why are you killing our friends?” The mom of the kid comes and soothes her and explains that lobsters are food and rather tasty. After a while the lobsters come out of the pot and we start eating. The little girl who was crying earlier takes a bite and she gets this little smile on her face. We ask how the lobster is and she sheepishly says “Lobster is yummy!” LOL Yep, fun to play with but even yummier to eat!!! 😀

  4. BEAVO says:

    I’ve lived in TX all my life and have eaten my share of crawfish, but never knew the part about not eating the straight ones. Thanks for that tip.

  5. Melissa says:

    Yum! Crawfish! Can’t wait to have some this season! Where did you go? I see all the signs that crawfish are coming soon…. but I want them now 😉 Just need some warmer weather, sun, a nice patio and cold beer… doesnt get much better than that!

    • Meghan says:

      We went to Floyd’s, and then we tried LA Crawfish over by Barnes and Noble off of I45. Justin really liked LA Crawfish. Said it was exactly what he was looking for. 🙂

  6. Kristel says:

    I just want to say that this post has been my favorite of yours in a while. I love reading about food especially the crawfish experience. If you throw more of these food posts in from time to time, you’ll make my day every time.

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