Stories

Memorial Day BBQ? Something Better!!!

For memorial day, when everyone else is prepping for BBQ’s, the lake and summer. We had a Crawfish boil. And before you say anything yes, we know today isn’t memorial day but it was the only day the whole family could get together. I know some of you have no idea what they are and some will have negative opinions and then the rest, you are my people and You alone will understand the majestic nature that surrounds a crawfish boil. It’s like a BBQ, which is awesome and spun into southern charm awesomeness. Since I was a kid, I have loved crawfish. You can buy anywhere from one pound to hundreds of pounds, if you so desire. We usually buy 2 sacks.  crawfish 4A sack consists of 25-35 pounds of live crawfish that you put on ice, till you are ready to purge them. To purge (Not killing people like the movie.)  means pouring the sacks out into a large cooler or baby pool (This is our preferred method) filling the pool half way and sprinkling salt all over the creatures. This causes them to empty/purge. I hope you understand what that means but if you don’t, it makes them empty the bowels. 😦 I know it sounds gross but better than eating it is my opinion.

crawfish5Today we started off by picking up those wonderful mudbugs from the store, putting them on ice and setting the scene. We moved all the cars and set up an old couch and an old carpet under the car port so that everyone is out of the sun and/or rain. As we were unrolling the old carpet we were met with a very unusual sight. A mommy mouse with at least 6 baby mice attached to her nips came running out (well as much running as she could manage) and ran straight toward the dogs. My husband scared her away from the dogs and then caught her under the trailer. All this went on with her babies still attached, Can you imagine if your baby held on with that much suction. I’m telling you, I would never be the same and I breastfed my boys. Thankfully they didn’t have that tight of a grip. After we relocated the poor scared momma we continued our work.

Around 10:30am this morning the first of the visitors showed up. It was my husband’s brother and girlfriend. I love them to pieces and when we lived closer he was over everyday. I miss them terribly and as we now live several hours away we don’t see them nearly enough. Then the other set of in-laws showed up (Pop and Grammy Dew) which caused the boys to lose their collective minds.  The hubs and I took the cue to take his brother (Q) and his girlfriend (boys call her Bina) for a jeep ride since they have never seen our new cars. We trotted through the field into the woods for a short ride. (over the river and through the woods, to grandmothers house we go. haha)

crawfishMaybe an hour later my parents (Nonna and Pap) showed up and we started the purging processes as well as boiling the water. Along with the crawfish we boil corn on the cob, mushrooms, red potatoes, eggs and pineapple. All of those except eggs and pineapple are cooked before the crawfish goes in and then placed in a large cooler to wait. The actual cooking is pretty uneventful because it’s scoping and boiling, scoping and boiling until the baby pool is empty. The eating part that is the most entertaining cause it’s almost frightening. All the food is placed in a large cooler and then each individual person makes a heaping plate to enjoy. There are empty buckets placed between each couple so that the heads and torso can be discarded after the tails are plucked, peeled and then enjoyed. I have been to crawfish boils where plates are not used but instead a long table covered in newspaper is placed out and then when the craw fish are done cooking they are drained and then spread across the table for the people to crowd around and eat. We used plates today. crawfish 6 It’s comical how almost ravenous people converge on the cooked crawfish. imagine a pack of starving wolves on an injured animal. It isn’t pretty or nice is it? Neither is the consumption of crawfish. You have been warned. LOL

 

I had to have eaten at least 2 plates which if I had to guess was close to 2-3 pounds of crawfish. That’s body and everything included in that weight estimate. We eat the tails so I probably ate 50 tails and they were awesome. Just spicy enough to get your lips burning but not so hot that you get blisters, Even my Bubbers got in to the crawfish and this kid doesn’t even like black pepper. (“It’s hot momma….HOT!”) he made sure to take a drink after each bite but he kept going back to them. I was so proud.

All in all today was wonderful. We all sat around, ate good food, had good conversations and laughs and just enjoyed each others company in general. I couldn’t ask for a better family or gathering, We were missing several people including both my brothers and their families and one of Hub’s brothers (stationed in Africa with the Army)  We missed you terribly but we will get together soon.

crawfish 7 Now as a daughter of a military vet, I would like to acknowledge the fact that Memorial day is not about BBQ with family and welcoming summer. Even though it has become so commercially acceptable as that it is about also remembering the lives lost protecting and preserving the freedoms we all enjoy. Thank you to all the serviceman and women out there away from your families protecting me and mine. I greatly appreciate it for the future of my boys and the past while my dad and family all served. There has been plenty of holidays and BBQs that my father has missed due to his obligation to his family and country and I couldn’t be more proud.

I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable Memorial Day. But please take a second and send a thank you out to the universe in remembrance of those lives list in the line of duty.  Be Safe, Have a good weekend!!

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