Friday, March 25, 2016

good times


We recently attended the 31st Annual World's Championship Crawfish Etouffee Cook-Off in Eunice, Louisiana. Where I saw my first live crawfish, and ate some etouffee, kind of a stew with crawfish meat and rice.

There we met a local, Chris. He had a cardboard flat full of boiled crawfish in front of him. He discovered we weren't from 'round here so he started talking crawfish. He pointed out the bags of live crawfish waiting to be boiled, each bag holds about 35 pounds and runs about $80. They are alive until dropped into the boiling water, when they curl up. So the word is - don't eat the straight ones as they were already dead before hitting the water. There were lots of folks enjoying their boiled crawfish, but Chris said, "This is nothing, just wait until Good Friday. Folks eat more crawfish on Good Friday than on all other days put together!"

It has to do with Lent - I had to Google it - Lent this year was from February 10 through March 24 (yesterday). During Lent, abstinence from meat is observed on Fridays, and the local seafood markets are very busy on Fridays. But on this day, Good Friday, their business is over the top. Orders must be made in advance and held with a deposit. Orders for crawfish.
I’d argue the crawfish boil is popular because it’s a communal activity at a time when people need a reason to be more communal. A crawfish boil is a like a barbeque, but better. Crawfish boils, like barbeques, are social endeavors: a bunch of folks around the pot, drinking, gossiping, sweating, shooing dogs and fanning flies. Neither crawfish boiling nor barbequing require true recipes; experience trumps instruction when it comes to both. Both are also large format, one can easily scale up or scale down depending on the number expected and the size of one’s appetite. Each celebrates simplicity in its own way: crawfish and water, protein and smoke. ~Brent Rosen
Here at the campground it is once again party time. I am beginning to understand that folks here have their priorities lined up - food, drink, family, music, good times, then maybe work. Campers started pulling in yesterday for the long weekend, the campground is full, campfires and grills fill the air with smoke, and live music will be playing in the barn on Saturday night. 

School is out, everyone is off work, except us... mmm it may be time to convert.

Lent is over, let the good times roll!

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