When All Else Fails … Dig in the Dirt

It is that time of year-just after the first good post-summer rain, when the air is fresher, the trees are brighter and the faithful edible snails, or lumache, as we say in Italian, are coming out to play.

And this is serious business for people in my neck of my woods.

You see, the French don’t have the stronghold on preparing these delicacies … the Calabrians think they are just as good. (They just don’t market, or shall we say, share them as well as the French do.)

I saw this little sucker the other day and knew it was just a matter of time before my husband and father-in-law were digging in the dirt and growling at me for not trying them.

Edible Snails in Calabria

Unfortunately, somebody beat them to it.

Edible Snails in Calabria

Oh yes, I give it another week or so before my suocero fills his bag and starts serving ’em up with a thick homemade marinara to my husband and his brother. And I’ll be there … just watching.

Have you ever tried snails? What did you think? Would you recommend them?

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Comments

  1. I have very fond memories of hunting for snails as a little girl. My nonna would send me and my cousin out to collect them after the rain. Armed with plastic bags and long sticks (for poking around in wood piles and bushes)we would set out all excited to see who would collect the most snails. I have only eaten them a handful of times – they are not really my thing – but if cleaned well and prepared a certain way they could be delicious!

    How fun! I have a similiar memory of looking for crawfish in ditches with my cousins … I don’t eat those, either.

  2. I used to make them a lot, but not eat them, because I knew it was the garlic butter DH and child liked. (We were French and never thought of pasta with lumache which may be why we all still eat pasta.)

    Sounds like NYC/Caribbean Ragazza would like them the way you make them.

    .-= Judith in Umbria´s last blog ..Puglia again =-.

  3. I did eat them once – after buying them and reading that they should be kept alive for a few days and fed some water and bread to “purify” them. By the time we cooked them, it was horrifying to see these little cuties we had grown used to for a few days, crawling up the sides of the pan trying to escape the hot water. never again.

    Traumatizing!
    .-= Ciaochowlinda´s last blog ..Green Tomato Chocolate Cake =-.

  4. I’ve always wondered exactly where these little critters come from…….since I’m not usually there long enough to watch the entire process…but I’ve found them in the trees and plants, and attached to the exterior walls. How do they get there? It never occurred to me to *actually* eat them!!!!

    So are you adding it the list of things to try next time you are here?

  5. Yick. No way. A couple of years ago, my parents and I were in a restaurant in rural Burgundy, and at the table next to us, the two *children* were scarfing up the snails, while the mom and dad didn’t partake at all!! I was astonished. Those kids loved ’em!

    Eek!

  6. Yum! Our sauce isn’t really thick, but it is loaded with oregano and delish!

    And you don’t need to let them “purify” for a few days if you go early in the morning right after (or still during) a rainfall as they won’t have eaten and aren’t full of, ahem, crap 😉

    Nice mental image there, Michelle. Grazie. 😉

    .-= Michelle | Bleeding Espresso´s last blog ..Mudslides in Messina: Thanks for Not Getting in the Way Berlusconi! =-.

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