Some say seasons do not exist in the islands and to be honest, I would have once been quick to agree. However since the inception of the blog I’ve come to see the islands far differently, intimately even. My coastal calendar now marked with seasons such as: tourist season, low season, hurricane season, grouper season, mango season, soursop season and of course crawfish season.
Over the past few days, as rainstorms steadily rolled inland off the sea, they brought an unexpected chill in the air – both at times catching me by surprise – and propelling my mood to spring from summer to fall. In the kitchen I became inspired to try my hand at crawfish stock, substituting it for shrimp in this recipe. The fresh from the sea crawfish serving as the perfect compliment to pumpkin and encouraging me to welcome fall in to our home. At the recommendation of a friend – as we had just fried Conch Wontons which I keep frozen for such impromptu occasions – we crisped individual sage leaves, then placing them atop the bisque and creating yet another compliment to a meal that will surely become synonymous with the chilly season in the islands.
P.S. Like the shrimp, a pound of crawfish will suffice. I recommend carefully chopping up the shells in to smaller pieces as this will help release the flavour. The recipe yields 4 servings.
To some, the definition of “best beaches” includes phrases such as “hard to find” and “footprint-free.”
Whereas my own definition includes “sea-shells” “bounty” and “endless.”
So imagine my delight when on the trust of a whim we pulled to the side of the road, across from the Wesley Methodist Church in James Cistern, Eleuthera, and discovered a beach covered from water-line to high water mark in milk conch-shells. Mother Nature’s assortment practically begging us to assist in her efforts to recycle from our first imprints in the black-speckled sand. It taking no more than a few minutes until my hands felt heavily weighted by the prized possessions, each find bearing a marked change in characteristics. Each noticeably different than the last. On some the outer shell sanded down by the elements of sun, sand and sea. On others the lip of the shell shined quite brightly. From one find to the next their amount of decay telling a story, hinting at an existence much longer or shorter than their counterpart. Each however bleached by the burning sun and all deserving of finding their way on to my tablescape, alongside this trinket box.
P.S. This rocky beach is not as ideal for swimming as it is for shelling.