Friday, June 19, 2009

Snails and Oak Leaf Lettuce

From "The Whole Beast", page 21.
I have to come clean here: I find the though of eating snails revolting. I can eat conch no problem at all... in fact I love conch. So, not sure why, I have a problem with it's land cousin. Maybe it's the slime... the poop (which, these critters can produce plenty of during purging. What? You didn't know they had to be purged? If they weren't, you'd be eating snail poop). And it also has to do that I place them in the bug category, as ignorant as that may be, they are bugs to me. Which is contradictory for me even more, because I have eaten bugs and lots of them. In Mexico, where I am from, they are abundant and readily available in all shapes, sizes and forms. I have eaten grasshoppers, agave worms, ant eggs, etc. But I think it is also the sheer size of these babies. It's like a clam. I have eaten snails before too, when I was a kid and restaurants that were "fancy" and French back in the 80's would all serve them in their shells with plenty of butter, garlic and parsley. But that's all you tasted. There was no distinguishable snail taste.

They smelled delicious while cooking with the shallots, garlic and red wine. There was no "snail" aroma wafting from the pot, so that was a good start.

Once the ingredients were all tossed together, I tasted one of the leaves of lettuce, and it was pretty darn good. The next step was to taste a snail. It wasn't so bad. It reminded me of wet earth and fallen leaves. Which is, I suppose their living quarters.

I think I can do without snails for the rest of my life and not feel a craving for them.

1 comment:

  1. I find it interesting that you find them so revolting... After all, chapulines, escamoles, jumiles, gusanos, tacos de cabeza, sesos, and cuitlacoche are in a lot of people's no-go list. I loved trying to feed cuitlacoche to my French teachers...