Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Nocturnal Confusion

We've been having clear, sunny days, relatively warm for this time of year -- although in the photo it still looks pretty wintry, doesn't it? I love those long shadows. That was on my walk to work on Monday.

I wrote about the snail haven in our garden a couple of days ago, and one of my commenters said jokingly, "Escargot!" And that got me wondering about escargot and whether one could, in fact, eat garden snails. Are they any different from the snails the French eat? (Don't worry -- I'm not about to try. I was just curious.)

I did some research and there are instructions online for eating garden snails, but it sounds like an incredibly laborious process. First you've got to "detox" the snails by feeding them fresh vegetables for a week or more, followed by a few days of fasting, before they're ready to cook up. And the cooking itself sounds pretty involved -- boiling followed by washing, followed by simmering, followed by baking. A snail is just not meant to be eaten easily. Even well-cooked escargot from a restaurant is only barely edible, in my opinion.

I think our snails are safe from predation -- by me, anyway.

I've been having some incredibly busy days at work, mostly because a lot of class projects have come to an end and kids are returning their books from February break -- so that means a lot of material needs to go back to the shelves. Not very exciting to write about, though! Plus I sent a fusillade of letters to parents whose kids have wildly overdue books -- like, from October.

I had the strangest experience early this morning. I got up about 4 a.m. to get some water and when I came back to bed, I heard the dog snoring down by Dave's feet. She doesn't usually sleep there -- she's usually in the middle of the bed -- so I pulled the covers back a bit and scratched and snuggled her head, saying, "What are you doing down here?" Then I covered her up again, walked around the bed, got in -- and there was Olga, in her usual spot. Whoa! Did she move super-fast? Is there another dog in the bed? Was I snuggling Dave's feet?


  1. The night is strange. Who really knows what goes on?

  2. Snuggling Dave's feet and speaking sweetly to them, hilarious, I prefer to think you actually did that. Snails are slugs wearing re-enforced work wear , right? Would you ever consider eating a slug??? Ewww, didn't think so. Too much trouble to actually make edible- mon dieu, les français doivent être un peuple désespéré

  3. A "fusillade"? That's a military term isn't it? Like a blast of bullets. I think you may need counselling or..."LIBRARIAN ARRESTED IN AMERICAN SCHOOL SHOOTING". "As he was bundled into a police van he yelled, "I warned them! I told them they should bring their books back on time!" Seventy three casualties were rushed in a fleet of ambulances to Queen Mary's Hospital."

  4. Are you sure you didn't dream the dog in the bed episode?

  5. I feel like Elizabeth- who really knows what goes on in the night?
    I believe I have eaten snails once. The chef sent some out to us as a special plate. What could one do but eat them?
    I really don't remember anything about them.

  6. Well, I wouldn't even have done any research into the eating of snails. I'm not about to try escargot.

  7. My friend David has served escargot at a couple of dinner events so I've eaten them before. However, after reading this description, I'm not sure I ever want to again.
    The early morning snuggling episode sounds almost familiar. I wake up sometimes at night hearing my dog either breathing or snoring and then of course, I realize I don't have a dog right now. I haven't been able to figure out if I imagine it or if I'm hearing myself breathing or snoring.

  8. I'm trying to remember if it was escargot or frog's legs I tried in Paris WAY back in the day. I think maybe both? Because I remember saying that the escargot was a little rubbery & mostly just tasted like the garlic butter it was served in. And the frog's legs tasted like chicken (ha) and were hardly worth the effort. And really, I felt a little bit like a monster - which is funny since I'm not a vegetarian.

    LOVE your nocturnal confusion - made me laugh out loud :)

  9. Somehow snails just don't seem like edible things to me. Maybe if I were a mouse or a squirrel, a salamander, a toad or turtle I'd be interested. Interesting dreamy night you had there.

  10. SWMBO and I LOVE escargot. When we were in Europe in 1985 we said we were going to eat it every day. Unfortunately in a month's travels we only found it on a menu once. That was in Monaco and we dined heartily on it. I think it's really the garlic butter that makes them tasty and if they have a good baguette you can sop up the juice in the little dish.

    And I'm wondering about your nocturnal confusion. Does Dave have really furry feet?

  11. LOL on the confusing Olga incident! Night time can be very disorienting.

    I don't care how much escargots are cooked, they will never pass my lips! My husband has eaten them and he says they are just a vehicle for the garlic. Well. I can think of a whole lot of other ways to deliver garlic that don't involve snails :)

  12. I ate snails in Portugal. apparently it's a national delicacy only available at a certain time of year. yay us, we were there at the right time and our waiter insisted we try it! they weren't the big ones like escargot though.

    I think maybe you were confusing Dave's feet for Olga. maybe he needs to see someone about that condition.

  13. Elizabeth: I love this comment. It's so true -- it's a mysterious time, especially those wee hours.

    Linda Sue: Dave swears I didn't snuggle his feet, but then again, he may have slept through it. It IS interesting that people eat snails and not slugs. Even very few animals eat slugs.

    YP: I'll have you know my fusillade was quite effective! We got a lot of those books back! No bloodshed required.

    Frances: Well, that's how it seemed in the morning, admittedly. But no, I'm pretty sure I lived it.

    Ms Moon: I ate them once, too. As someone else said, they're just a vehicle for butter and garlic. They really don't have much of a taste and the texture isn't the greatest.

    Red: I'll try most things once. But only once.

    Sharon: Well, don't tell David it's my fault you're off escargot! He'll be mad at me! Your dog story DOES sound a bit like mine. As Elizabeth said, the nighttime is strange.

    Bug: Both escargot and frog's legs seem like desperation food.

    Robin: They really AREN'T edible! I don't think they have many predators, either. Ours have been sitting out there in the garden, completely uncovered, and as far as I can tell nothing has tried to eat any of them.

    Catalyst: You may be the only person I know who actually LIKES escargot. It really is all about the butter and garlic. The snails themselves are like rubber bands.

    Jenny-O: Yeah, give me garlic bread any day!

    Ellen: I know Dave snores, but I never knew his FEET snored. LOL!

  14. We're all a bit out of time right now. Hard to believe the world we're living in so we're pushing at the edges of what's real.