Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Mad Shrimping


Hood Canal. Last day of spot shrimp season. Two guys, two shrimp pots, 800 feet of rope. One canoe.

This may be one of stupider things I do on occasion, but it's surely no stupider than things I did in my youth. Yes, the water's cold and if we dumped it would be a problem, but generally we try to stay close enough to shore so that, in the event of an emergency, the swim isn't too far.

A few years ago we hit Dabob Bay further up the Canal on a beautiful yet blustery spring day. By late morning there were whitecaps on the water, which made for a tough go. This outing was a piece of cake. No wind, still water, not too many boats. After setting the first two pots we paddled to shore and snacked on a few oysters. Seals and eagles foraged nearby.

But maybe we should have been a tad more superstitious. After all, we were shrimping off Dewatto Point, known to the Salish Indians as the place where men's bodies are inhabited by evil spirits.



Shrimping off Dewatto Point was sketchy enough; when I got home I was beat tired and able to summon only enough energy to make tempura fried shrimp. Head on.

Martha joined me. "It's like salt and pepper shrimp at the Hing Loon," I explained. "The head is good for you. Plus, you don't want to be wasteful." But Martha won't be biting the heads off shrimp again anytime soon. The next day she said they invaded her dreams.

4 comments:

t-mos said...

haven't been around in awhile. awesome set of posts. thats a lot of tasty foraged goodness, well done!

msilano said...

Okay, so the spot prawns DID haunt me, but not in the way you might think (belching or sour stomach, etc.). What happened makes more sense after reading your post: it was the evil spirits, for sure. I mean, it was like the shrimpies invaded the core of my being and decided I shouldn't have a good night's sleep (since, of course, they weren't either). Indians know about this shit--you shouldn't be foraging in sacred/bad juju places. But yeah, once I ate 'em with the heads off in the a cioppino--man were they good (and no bad dreams).

Laurie Constantino said...

I grew up around Hood Canal and this brought back some very fine memories of seafood foraging. I haven't thought about Dabob Bay in years. Thanks for the memories...

Hunter Angler Gardener Cook said...

Nice work! I have never gone shrimping before, and it looks like a lot of fun...although I'd use a rowboat with a bit broader beam. Can't wait to go looking for clams on the North Coast soon near Point Reyes.