Friday, August 31, 2007
Friday Florida Food Fest Minus Muscadines
That was my plate of delicious shrimp creole that Mrs. FC made during Dave and Tami's visit. You can tell it's my plate if you look carefully at the salad.
Notice the absence of tomatoes?
Yet, the shrimp creole is obviously resplendent with essence of tomato.
I just don't like them raw and semi-whole. Cook 'em and I'm good. Dice 'em up and mix them with salsa ingredients and I'm good even if they are raw, but never, ever expect me to eat a fresh tomato slice or chunk.
Continuing our little Friday food jaunt brings us to the Scuppernong grapes above. Scuppernongs are members of the Muscadine grape tribe, but they never turn purpley black so these were almost ripe. When ripe they would have a bronzey luster to them.
There are few things fruitier than these wonderful southern grapes and I look forward to them each summer.
I waited all year for these to grow and ripen. The crop on several vines was heavy and just about ready for picking last Friday when I went out to feed the chickens ... the outside chickens.
On Friday the vines were heavy with fruit, on Saturday they were devoid of fruit.
I suspect a squirrel - deer alliance, and I'm not ruling out coons and possums either.
I may have an axis of evil in my very backyard.
I know the squirrels are involved, because I saw one scamper off with grape in mouth. I suspect the deer are involved because some of the lower grape leaves were browsed.
This grapegrabbing has never happened before and I'm wondering if the lack of a pond or other surface water might be a factor. Huge, succulent, sweet, wet grapes would be mighty tempting to a thirsty animal.
It's frustrating. I feel like the critters took off one of their gloves and slapped me across the face.
My wife likes to do Sudoku puzzles to challenge her brain.
I challenge MY brain by trying to garden in the middle of a subtropical forest.