CULINARY THRILL SEEKING: Gratuitous Crawfish shot

Published 11:44 pm Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Be nice to your Cajun friends. They might invite you to a crawfish boil. Actually, I just went to one at a family with an Italian background. They knew their stuff.

The weather was just right, the onions and sausage and corn and potatoes were just right and there was family and fun.

Just in case some guests were not crawfish eaters, the hostess stuffed a pork loin with boudain and topped it with bacon. I confess I had more of that than the crawfish.

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There’s a reason we love this season in Southeast Texas.

Peppercorn down!

I love crushed red pepper on everything, and not just a little of it. My friend is crazy for black peppercorns, and they must be fresh. She gifted me with a sleek metal Trudeau pepper mill that I did not realize was battery operated. It was filled with gourmet peppercorns. I could not twist anything out and finally noted a little label, directing one to look inside.

That’s when I found the batteries, but I’d opened the mill part and pepper rolled all over the counter and onto the floor. I saved what I could and scraped the clean ones back into the mill. I tried again in an hour and the same thing happened.         

Thank goodness for online instructions. I saw you were to just turn the mill over for one-handed grinding. It still wouldn’t work. I then noted a tiny tab you were supposed to pull so as the batteries would be in the right position. The whirring began and I had flakes of fragrant black pepper. I also had a lot of whole, spilled peppercorns I wasn’t ready to let go of. No worries. I plastered them on everything from a peanut butter frosted granola bar to eggs and sprinkled them over salad and nut mixes. Waste not, want not. Next week, I’ll get to ground black pepper. I wonder if red pepper misses me.