“Why does Sea World have a seafood restaurant?? I’m halfway through my fish burger and I realize, Oh my God….I could be eating a slow learner.”

Yesterday was a quiet July 4th for me. I watched the Sox win from the comfort of my air-conditioned house. At game time it was 92˚, and I couldn’t imagine sitting in the bleachers in all that heat. Fenway must have been awash with sweat. Last night I could hear the sounds of firecrackers from all over the neighborhood. I watched Independence Day. That and Jaws are my traditional July 4th movies, “You yell ‘Shark,’ we’ve got a panic on our hands on the Fourth of July.” Last night I watched the Boston Pops on the esplanade.  All in all it was a good day.

My father loved to fish, mostly in the winter for smelt. He also dug quahogs. He’d fill his basket, bring them home and open the shells. My mother would make stuffed quahog, put the stuffing into the shells, and we’d have some right away while she froze the rest. I loved smelt though they were so small it took several to make a meal. Baked, stuffed quahog is still a favorite of mine.

My mother didn’t serve fresh fish when we were growing up. I remember meatless Friday nights and having French fries and fish sticks for dinner. As we got older, my mother got a bit of courage and started serving fresh fish. She started with a casserole, sort of fish in disguise, and we ate it up. That casserole also had shrimp, and I remember it was heavenly. We’d ask for it often. I still make every now and then, but somehow it just doesn’t taste the same as my mother’s. I swear she had a golden touch.

I love fish and shellfish. Lobster is one of my favorites. Sometimes when I’d visit my parents for the weekend, my dad would take my mom and me out to dinner for twin lobsters. The only problem was there was nowhere to hide. Sitting beside or across from my father made you a target, and you knew there was no way to avoid the squirts as my dad devoured his lobster. He was the best lobster eater I’ve ever seen. Even the small amount of meat from the legs got eaten. He was also one of the noisiest as he sucked the meat from those legs and hmmed his way through the lobster. When he was finished only shells were left, never a trace of lobster meat.

My sister and I learned to eat lobster by watching our dad. We are also messy, and we are never quiet. We eat every piece of meat, even from the legs. We pride ourselves on our prowess in devouring a lobster. Without question, it is one of the best life lessons my dad taught us.

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14 Comments on ““Why does Sea World have a seafood restaurant?? I’m halfway through my fish burger and I realize, Oh my God….I could be eating a slow learner.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    If Your mother had a golden touch when it came to food, my mother had the touch of death 🙂 🙂 🙂 I know she really wanted to make delicious food but she just can’t. But I must admit that she now days has become better when it comes to cooking 🙂 Thankfully I had my grandmother and my best friends mother that showed me how food should taste 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Lobster must be eaten loudly 🙂 There’s just no other way if as much as possible will be eaten. I’ve always felt sorry for those that feel the need to eat lobster properly, they miss out so much 🙂

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • Caryn Says:

      Christer, if one is not eating lobster loudly, one cannot be eating lobster properly. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      My mother even got better as we got older as she cooked food that we wouldn’t have eaten as kids. She became quite the gourmet cook.

      It’s true-lobster is a loud food and a wet food with all the squirts as you break the shells. My mother would only eat a baked stuffed lobster. She was never into all the work to eat a boiled lobster.

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I remember meatless Fridays, too. Mostly, I don’t remember what she fed us because my mother could not cook so it was best just to swallow without looking or tasting.
    One meal that was good was her clam chowder. She made it with milk, onions, butter and Cap’t Snows clams in a can. She served it with Italian bread. It was yummy.
    In summer meatless Friday was pizza and orangeade at Kitty’s. That was wonderful.
    Fried smelts. Haven’t had those in decades.

    My 4th was quiet except for the neighborhood firecrackers. It was too hot to do anything except eat some ice cream.

    Today is rocket hot. I gave up and put the old AC unit in the window. It’s horribly noisy and will keep me awake but I couldn’t take the heat any more.

    Stay cool!

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I remember fried dough Fridays. We loved those dinners the best. My poor mother could never keep up with us standing there with empty plates waiting out turn.

      My father was a meat and potato guy, but my mother became a venturesome cook when we were older and our palates had grown. My dad got the plain veggies, and we got the wonderfully fresh, delicious veggies.

      Yup, fried smelt-still a favorite. I can’t remember where it was, but not too long ago I ate at a fish restaurant which served friend smelt-I ordered it!

      My house is cool with the central air. I went out to water the deck flowers and nearly died from the heat. Though I had watered the flowers yesterday, the poor things were wilting today. I went fast so I could get back into the house. Ah, the cool house!!

  3. Coleen Burnett Says:

    Your post brought back a memory. There used to be a fish house in Long Branch NJ called Gaskin’s. For all I know it’s still there. They had an all you can eat of steamed clams and beer…you’d get them right off the boat….mmmmmmmm! I gave up drinking (and butter) a long time ago, but just the thought of that brings a smile..

    And I LOVE lobster but hate the idea of a fistfight with my meal…

    I am glad we both live near the sea where such food is plentiful…

    I sea food I eat it…

    • katry Says:

      Hi Coleen,
      I love steamed clams and butter. You reminded me I haven’t had them in a long while. I’ll have to remedy that.

      It is so true. We are very lucky to be able to have the freshest fish possible.

      Ha-I sea food and eat it too!!!!

  4. Bob Says:

    The only crustacean that I love more than a whole Maine lobster is a Dungeness crab. A west coast vs. east coast contest. Both require skill, patience, band aids and a bib to retrieve all the succulent meat. I remember taking my Sri Lankan friend to the Legal Seafood restaurant in Boston many years ago where we ordered steamed lobster. He had never indulged and was pleasantly surprised at the dish while he struggled to get out the goodies. Being of Indian descent, (dot not feather), he wanted the waiter to bring some Tabasco sauce to mix in with the drawn butter. If his food didn’t spontaneously combust it didn’t have any flavor.

    My better half grew up in Chicago where sea food is ether fish sticks or Lake Michigan Trout. She doesn’t eat shrimp and only recently has developed a liking for broiled salmon and Dungeness crab. The crab was the result of a vacation to San Francisco. She thinks the canned variety of tuna and salmon is real sea food. I think it’s a form of cat food. When I travel I always order seafood, shrimp or lamb. Things she doesn’t like and rarely cooks.

    Today the heat started to rise and we topped out at 95 degrees. By Sunday we will probably reach 99 or 100. Monday might bring us a slight chance of rain as that tropical depression in the gulf moves westward towards the upper Texas coast. I am keeping my fingers crossed that we get some rain soon.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      My sister would be right along with you eating that crab. It is her favorite above all else. I too like crab, and I love soft-shelled crab, but you can’t find it around here. I remember visiting a friend in Delaware and having the best soft-shelled crab sandwich. Crab is a lot of work for not much meat.

      I don’t eat salmon. I think it is the only fish I don’t like. There is something strange about a pink fish. I won’t eat tuna from a can, but I love fresh tuna. Few of my friends eat lamb, and I love it. I too order it when out for dinner. Seafood I have all the time at home so no need to order that.

      Boston has been in the 90’s while we’ve been on the high 80’s. This will last until next week.

  5. Ilka Normile and Richard Henderson Says:

    I like the small, ultra-thin bit of meat that you find when you pry open the tail flippers of lobsters. Very delicate and delicious.

    • katry Says:

      Ilka and Richard,

      Those little flippers take a talented hand to get the meat.

      I love both the tail and claw meat and consider it a triumph when each comes out in a single piece.

  6. Lori Kossowsky Says:

    I love the title “Why does Sea World have a seafood restaurant?? I’m halfway through my fish burger and I realize, Oh my God….I could be eating a slow learner.” Though as you know, I love the ocean and ocean swimming, I won’t eat any fish, or anything that lived in the sea. It’s not compassion; it is a weird kind of phobia.

    I lived near Long Branch N.J., which is fairly close to to LBI, where I spent the summers.

    Waving,
    Lori and…

    • katry Says:

      Lori,
      I love seafood except salmon, squid, octopus and anything dried. I haven’t had seafood in a while so now I’m hoping maybe tomorrow for dinner. Sunday will be quieter than Saturday as the weekenders will be gone.


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