Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sunset's One Block Party contest with Team Found Fruit. Experiment 1. Escargot

You may have read about Team Found Fruit getting into Sunset Magazine’s One Block Party Contest. Over the summer we will be growing over 25 different veggies and fruit, and will be taking on food projects like eggs, honey, cheese making, etc. to create a 100% locally grown feast which will happen in early September. The winners get a spread in Sunset magazine and $500 bucks. We are competing with 9 other teams from various parts of California, Washington, and a team from Colorado.Meet the Teams / Meet the Teams part 2.

We are all very excited and have divied up the grow and projects among Found Fruit's 8 team members. To get into this contest we figured we had to pull out all the stops, so we picked some pretty far out food projects, one of which is foraging for garden snails…welcome Team escargot. Needless to say this was not on my top 10 list of delicious foods for our menu…But, since we made it into the contest and have the inevitable end which is our feast, my partner Jamie and I decided to do a preliminary experiment.

First let me say that our garden snails are a culinary delicacy imported from France over 100 years ago. These mollusks are about “15% protein, 3% fat, and the rest water” says Michael Ellis of Bay Nature. They are hermaphodic with no natural predators, which is why they grow in your garden as abundantly as your plants. If, the plants survive that is, with the snails hearty appetites.

First we caught a bunch from the garden and put them in a pot covered with cheesecloth.

Snails must be purged with cornmeal for a week or more to clean out their systems in case they have consumed any poison. Some people even feed them herbs like thyme to pre-flavor, if you will…

Our dog Mini Wolf was perplexed.

1 week later we boiled them changing the water 3 times until is was clear. They were then chopped and sauteed with butter, garlic, and parsley. I expected them to be chewy but they were quite tender and well, they tasted like butter, garlic, and parsley. Not bad!

We may call on Found Fruit members to forage us up a bunch for the feast in September, but all in all I think Team Escargot will fare ok. If you are tired of those pesky snails in your garden and want to eat local food then you may want to consider cashing in on this easy to find delicacy! Bon appetite~

No comments:

Post a Comment