Charlotte Fresh has just returned from a family holiday in Falmouth Foreside, Maine. The whole way there, I kept thinking about how many fresh lobsters I could eat. The number, to be honest, is quite small since I used to have an allergy to crustaceans and have not touched a lobster in maybe nine years. I’ve been afraid to try since I got the medical ok a few years ago, and this was my big chance to do it right.
We stayed in a little cottage off Casco Bay, and hubby ventured out one morning to the Town Landing try to catch the sunrise, but the fog rolled in on him at 4:45 am (poor dear!). It is pretty, even in the fog:
A small walk up from the Town Landing and a few blocks away from the cottage is the famous Town Landing Market on Route 88 in Falmouth Foreside. They’ve got almost everything you need to get by during the week foodwise – local Stonewall Kitchen goods, local beer, and even local beef and chicken. But the specialty here is lobster. And apparently “native ice cubes.” Eh?
But, I digress. On to the lobsters. The market sold both soft shell and hard shell lobsters. We went for the soft shells and indulged in one-and-a-quarter pounders for each of us, but they do have less meat than a hard shell would. Here are the little buggers, nice and fresh:
I won’t get into the preparation debate on lobsters in this post because some folks are squeamish. But, we did steam them, and we had a nice dinner accompanied by lemon butter and local beer. Side salads and microwaved in-the-husk corn helped round out the easy meal. (Chop off the ends, wrap corn-in-husk in a dry paper towel and microwave for 2-3 mins. Husk and silk will rub off easily – be careful, it’s hot. Thanks for the tip, Bruce!)
I managed to eat a whole tail (very slowly), and then passed on the rest – just to be on the safe side. But I was pretty proud of myself for being able to eat any of it at all without keeling over. I did have some medicine with me, just in case. (Food allergies are very serious, folks.)
We didn’t cook the entire time we were there – in fact, we went out most of the time. One of the places we enjoyed is the Foreside Tavern. They actually have a menu that features ingredients supplied by local farms and purveyors. Just my thing! Here’s a peek at the Pan Fried Haddock with Lemon Butter and Capers (yum!) that my brother-in-law let me capture on his iPhone:
We did try a local root beer, but hubby and I agree that it doesn’t compare to our local Uncle Scott’s. One thing I will miss are those tiny wild blueberries they have in Maine, even though they are a pain to de-stem. If only I could have preserved some for later. Perfect for pancakes and muffins. But I do really enjoy the blueberries we have at home, too. (See my muffin recipe in an upcoming post.)
It’s vacation time, so keep in mind that it’s easy to eat locally when you’re traveling. Especially if you stick to the local specialties. Ask what the local foods are, and people are very willing to tell you. And when it’s something like lobster in Maine, you can also feel good that you’re supporting the local fishery economy and helping to keep generations of fishermen in business.