Thursday, 28 April 2011

Foodie Abroad: Foraging

It turns out that I had a deprived childhood and never even realised. You see, despite numerous childhood beach holidays, sandcastles and 99s a-plenty, my parents NEVER took me winkling. I shall be having stern words with them when next we meet, I can tell you. Because it turns out I love winkles.

Here they are, recovered after some extensive scrambling around in rockpools and a grazed shin. Aren't they lovely, though?

I haven't included a photo of the winkle sans shell because they are not things of beauty - what shellfish are, quite frankly? But they taste amazing, little iodiney bites of seaside and sunshine.

We had them pretty simple and unadulterated - after rinsing they were boiled for twenty minutes and then piled into bowls where we fell upon them with pins - you have to "winkle" the flesh out you see, just like snails. A dish of garlic butter (I couldn't shake the escargot connection) proved a lovely addition, but they were fabulous just by themselves as well.

Unfortunately, it is late in the mussel season, so our foraging in that direction was slightly less successful: those that we found were delicious but a little on the dainty side:

Still, they made a perfectly pleasant, if light supper, briefly boiled with wine, the resulting juices being strained and combined with cream and garlic.

We've been walking along the beach today and have found a new spot which looks to be a veritable treasure trove of mussels - D reckons if we head back in September we could be in for a feast of crustaceans. Which is good news as far as I'm concerned; not only because I adore shellfish (and it is, incidentally, fantastically diet friendly) but because the act of gathering it yourself somehow makes it taste all the sweeter.

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  1. I love seafood. Looks like you're having a great time !

  2. Suddenly have a burning desire to be poking around rockpools on a pretty beach. Sounds gorgeous. Glad you're having a good break. xx