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 crawdaddy crayfish mudbugfinger-lickin'The post I had planned for today is important to me, and I want to give it justice. I think I might be feeling short on justice right now, so for today you get to feast your eyes on these mud-burrowing spice symbols of the dirty South. 

Put your imagination’s elbows on the table, and get ready to be covered in a dripping salty rub. Ahh – the lips burn pouty for hours.

We went to Cormier’s in Monroe, LA, and there we sat outside on picnic tables across the street from houses wearing their new Spring. Kids ran amuck. Paper-towels spun out of control. I wished I could ask my waiter to pull my hair back in a ponytail so I didn’t get it in my fuss over the tiny piece of meat within the intimidating armor. 

With crawfish, eyes google, clawed arms dangle limp, the head oozes a fatty intake of bayou and seasoning, and you still eat it. Your hangnails sting, and you love it.

amberhaines
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26 Comments

Jessica
Reply March 24, 2009

girl...i hear ya. aint nothin like some good crawfish in ya hair and nails...lips burnin for hours!
Jessica
Louisiana

Jessica
Reply March 24, 2009

oh and i almost forgot...a runnin , snifflin nose...

Emily M
Reply March 24, 2009

Oh, how I miss crawfish. I live in Connecticut now, and while lobsters and clams and other shellfish abound, they've never heard of such a thing as crawfish (and they wouldn't dream of dousing ANYTHING in that much spice). No wonder it feels so cold up here!

Sara
Reply March 24, 2009

oh yummy. I wish I could reach in and grab a handful.

Sara’s last blog post..Interview with Mom

hamster
Reply March 24, 2009

honestly, it's the burning of the hangnails and the head full of bayou that deters me. call me weak, and maybe i am, but i cannot abide the finger fire and the pooey stuff in the crawdad cranium. i'm squeamishing just thinking of it.

however, the picture of the 'puppies and the corn was nice.

hamster’s last blog post..SWEDEN TAKES THE GOLD MEDAL IN THE VAMPIRE FILM OLYMPICS

Lora Lynn
Reply March 24, 2009

"so I didn't get in my fuss..."

Love that line.

Lora Lynn’s last blog post..An Udderly Delightful Home Project

Janna
Reply March 24, 2009

i am with kevin on the crawdeads, but i learned to love me some crab, cooked and devoured in much the same way, when i lived in MD.

BlueCastle
Reply March 24, 2009

Oh my word. That looks so wonderful. Never had that before, but I hope to, someday. Before I die. :)

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Milton
Reply March 24, 2009

I also dig the corn swollen with spicy juices that get to poppin' in your mouth when you take a bite. The kick is soon to follow. Finger lickin' good y'all.

I take it y'all's trip was a good one, AH? Give a girl a phone call when the dust settles. LYTP.

Milton’s last blog post..On Affection and The Friends of our Youth

    Amber
    Reply March 24, 2009

    I love these comments. Honestly, friends, it's not easy for me to do it. You should see Seth. I don't know any other way to tell you this, but the big thing is to pinch off the body and suck everything out of the head. I CANNOT do it. I want to, but I can't. That's all I have to say about that, Jenny.

    Milton, I love that you love crawfish. By the way, what on earth does LYTP mean? People do that stuff to me all the time, and I am completely clueless. No joking that I saw LOL for months before I realized it means lots of laughs or laugh out loud. Okay, nevermind. I guess I don't really know that one either.

    Mary, the way I order my words is my parent's fault; they are storytellers. I've been called weird more than I've been called anything. Thank you so much for the encouragement.

    Believe me, I love all of you who can't handle a crawfish. Seth's family is fairly good at unconditional love but not when it comes to whether or not you eat good Louisiana food. There's this one dish, though, that I do not understand at all. It is this green jello mold with horseradish in it. Have y'all ever heard of such a thing?

Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect
Reply March 24, 2009

Amber, the thought of eating those things makes me feel a little sick, to be honest. And yet you made it sound so appealing. I don't know how you do that. It's like you have the same words to work with that I do, but you manage to do something so different, so beautiful with them.

I'm still not eating crawfish, though.

Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect’s last blog post..World's best lasagne...or at least the best one I've ever made.

Seth
Reply March 24, 2009

*Reasons To Read Milton: a Note to My Wife's Friend*
by Seth Haines

Milton, you are swell. For one, you like crawfish and the goodness that waits behind the smell of celery salt and red pepper. Next, you use the word poppin' as only a true southern girl could and that is just great. Finally, you have perfected the use of the southern-plural-possessive. You are a wicked grammarian, my friend.

Megan @ Hold it UP to the Light
Reply March 24, 2009

Ahhhh....I want some! It's been too long, too long. Gonna have to find me a good Crawfish Boil round here soon. Maybe I'll host one myself...it's finally warm enough.

I love seasons change.

patty
Reply March 24, 2009

oh yum! was there some good smokey sausage in there, too? ; )

patty’s last blog post..Yesterday

darcy @ lwm3b
Reply March 24, 2009

And this must be what separate the real suth'n girls from the wanna-bes. This Chicago girl could no-way, no-how force that down. Nuh uh. Couldn't do it.

Maybe it was all that once-upon-a-time city dwelling, but those creatures are wayyyy too close of cousins to cock roaches for my liking.

But, admittedly, I find it totally charming that an entire sub-culture has been born around the baking and seasoning of those *ahem* creatures. God bless 'em all for it.

And look at it this way, if I ever get invited to one of these southern shin-digs... it's all the more for "y'all". ;)

(Love love love your blog by the way.)

Darcy

darcy @ lwm3b’s last blog post..7 Weeks of Meatless Fridays: Week 5

Milton
Reply March 25, 2009

LYTP is a terrible terrible symptom of a rampant generational sickness. I abbreviated. Twice in that comment. You should know that I say only to those that I love dearly Amber Haines, love ya to pieces.

Seth, I do love me a good crawfish boil. However, I must admit that I too am squeamish about their little tiny heads and googly eyes. Truth be told, I really prefer them already hulled and in etouffee. That's the way to 'gracefully' eat crawfish and it is GOOD y'all. With that said, any meal sloppily spread out on a newspaper-covered picnic table has got to be good too. Y'all have to try an authentic crawfish boil at least once, and after you do that, try etouffee. I promise we wouldn't steer ya wrong!

Seth and Amber, maybe we should have ourselves a boil before the Arkansas/LSU game next year?

Milton’s last blog post..Because This is Where I am

Amy
Reply March 25, 2009

The crawfish, or cray-fish, or whatever-the-hun they are called, is a dish I have never partaken of, nor does it appeal to me. I was born in the South (Mississippi), but haven't lived there my whole life, so some of what seems norm to you seems abnorm to me. I don't even like fish that much, though I grew up on the coast. Your words, Amber, conjur up images of family, laughs and community, and that is truly beautiful, no matter where you make your home or what fills your plate. (I'm glad you don't slurp the slurpies...just the idea!) LOVE your writing...keep it comin'!

Amy’s last blog post..When the kid is quiet…

Seth
Reply March 25, 2009

Has anyone here ever eaten beef tongue served in the authentic mexican tradition?

Just a question.

Seth’s last blog post..A Wednesday Mother Letter-In Robin’s Words

rachel-asouthernfairytale
Reply March 25, 2009

I adore crawfish!!!

We're doing crab legs and shrimp with sausage and potatoes and corn on friday night! My fingers, lips and tongue will be burning and I'll be in Heaven ;-p

sweet girl.

hamster
Reply March 25, 2009

one of my favorite side items in china was sliced and pickled pig ears served with hot peppers and cold cucumbers. unbelievable.

by the way, please check out the greatness that just happened in the link post below. so good. i'm still quivering.

hamster’s last blog post..A Three Hands in the Popcorn Bag First!

brooke robinson
Reply March 25, 2009

how in the world did you come up with all those descriptions? the hangnail part is where i bow down and say i'm not worth amber haines! good writin sis...and good eatin. i sure hope you ate some for me.
ps...i still miss you!

Rachel
Reply March 25, 2009

Eek. I was once present at a "boil". It was in a back alley in Nashville. I think I ate a potato. I just remember a stray crawdad making an escape to the main road. Dear me, I hadn't thought of that in a long time.

As for the cow tongue, if cold and sliced for a sandwich in my grandpa's fridge in Michigan is the authentic mexican tradition, then why yes, yes I have. It tastes like any other part of the cow, in my opinion.

Rachel’s last blog post..American Idol, Top 10

Seth
Reply March 26, 2009

Rachel,

Although I cannot comment upon your grandfather's nationality, it does seem like he might have been on to something with the tongue sandwich. I tried to tell Amber that it tasted like purevbeef with absolutely no fat. It might have been even more "beefy." Thanks for backing me up here.

Other Rachel, Amber informed me today that you are from the Republic. I suppose those shrimp you eat this weekend are going to be Gigantic? I've heard stories about Texas coast shrimp and how once every 100 years they grow large enough to wage war with Galveston. Is that true?

Maybe the Hamster could also shed some light on this rumor?

Seth’s last blog post..A Wednesday Mother Letter-In Robin’s Words

SECRET AGENT MAMA
Reply March 28, 2009

My mouth seriously just watered!

SECRET AGENT MAMA’s last blog post..The Dark Side

Jessie
Reply March 29, 2009

Those look delicious! How was Cormier's? We're just over the bridge in WM and I haven't had Cormier's in probably 15 years! We had crawfish at Bayle's Landing last weekend and it had a great flavor, but was not snottin' spicy. I want some snottin' spicy! I had 7lbs and think I had to ask for a refill on my drink once. Did they have the jumper up for the kids? I haven't even been down Forsythe in months. It sounds like it was a great night out!

Jessie’s last blog post..Fun Lessons!

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