...and I don't mean fried chicken from the Colonel. Right now, at least part of tomorrows supper is sitting, in a few gallons of water, inside a 5 gallon Home Depot bucket in the back of my basement. I hear the hum of the portable aerator that I have attached to it to make sure that this particular part of tomorrow's evening meal stays alive until just before I cook it.
Nope, I did not go fishing today. As a matter of fact, I headed out to get the oil in my Corolla changed and drove to an oil change chain-store where they change your car's oil in a jiffy! When I saw they wanted just under $90 for a signature oil and lube, well I figured I would go somewhere else where it was less expensive and use the money I did not spend there on something good to eat. After that, figuring I would not make it to both my local auto repair shop and Costco on time to get everything done that I wanted to do, I headed to Costco to return a 36 pound bucket of flour that had leaked. Supposed to be long term storage stuff for emergency stock so it should have been sealed tight. Costco made quick with a refund and then I did a little shopping there. Got some needed AA batteries and some honey and real maple syrup and some bottled water but that was a bout it. Oh yeah, I got a loaf of bread too.
Then I made a couple of other stops after which I realized it was earlier than I had thought and I headed to my local shop to see if they could do the oil change. They said they could do it pronto, a nice surprise, and that I could wait. I told them I'd come back in an hour or so and they said fine. I headed out to do a bit of shopping since I would now have the difference between about $90 and $30 with which to shop.
So, I went to the pharmacy picked up a few items and then next store to a Korean market. I had some seafood in mind. I picked up 2 pounds of wild caught (w/c) shrimp (on sale), a pound or so of fresh w/c squid, a pound of w/c scallops, a few pounds of pork neck meat (bones in) and a dozen top-neck clams, some shitake mushrooms, some other mushrooms and three bunches of green onions (scallions). The clams are in the bucket. I put them in there with about 3 gallons of cold water, and about 5-6 tablespoons of salt. I throw in an aerator stone, hooked up to a battery operated air pump, and the clams stay fresh while at the same time cleaning themselves of any sand or other grit they may have inside their shells. That way, when the pot is ready for them tomorrow, they will be ready for the pot - maybe not willingly but you get the idea.
The clams will go into the pot with the squid and the scallops and shrimp, not long for the shrimp to be in there, and all the other ingredients I mentioned. I will brown the pork first, before adding it to the pot but only after I take the meat from the bone. I usually use pork bellies but was not about to pay almost $5 a pound for them tonight. The pork I got looks pretty fatty and should brown nicely and taste almost, if not, as good as the pork bellies. I brown them and sauté the scallions, mushrooms too before they go into the pot. Hopefully, I was right to think we have small finger sized potatoes in the larder. All those ingredients, a bottle of Spaten bier (and fairly strong to strong and very tasty beer will do, a good number of spices (hot stuff but not too hot this time since it still burns the heck out of my mouth and throat because of my past radiation treatments) and some other spices (a good amount of garlic but not enough to kill the flavor of the seafood and black and white pepper) will go into it. Maybe some tomatoes, plum or cherry too, and some tomato paste, but I think not this time.
After it all cooks up together well, it tastes like heaven and burns like hell. Of course, as I said above, it is not going to be quite that hot this time around. My wife should like that, she always says I make it way too hot (but she gobbles it up anyway). I do not have a set recipe though I had a recipe for it a few years ago. I just go with what seems like it would taste good and it always does. I don't want it to sound as if I have made this a hundred times before, maybe 4 or 5 at most but it is good each time or has been so far. This time I passed on baby octopus, I usually go for them too but they did not look good this time around. I have also used cuttlefish too, very small ones, before and they are great in the mix.
Oh yeah, after doing my shopping, I walked back to the garage and picked up my car all ready to go. It was exactly $30 for the oil change and a few cents more than $38 for the food. Man, I would have sure wasted a good meal had I gone to the place that charged $90 for changing oil in a jiffy! Now, the Corolla's oil is good to go for another 3K miles and me and my family will enjoy a very tasty seafood dinner and have change left over too.
All the best,
Maple Coffee Brewtail
5 hours ago