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My Foodie tale begins in 1986 on the kitchen floor of my grandparents split level duplex where I created my first "Yucky soup."  A mixture of beans, noodles, rice, crackers, flour, sugar, basically anything within my reach inside the pantry all poured into a pot filled with water which I then requested be placed on the stove to simmer.  Oh yes at the ripe old age of 2 years old I knew that my soup had to simmer.  
Growing up in a house that revolved around the kitchen, learning how to cook wasn't an option but more a way of life.  My mother's family migrated from Russian in the mid 70's when she just 16 years old and brought with them European flavors that I thank them for each and every day.   

In the early 90's my Bubby the intelligent and beautiful Russian woman that she is, began importing black Beluga Caviar by the case.  I remember the first time she called me downstairs with the promise of a special treat!  What happened next was the birth of a caviar maniac.  Black Russian bread completely buttered and spread with big beautiful balls of Russian beluga caviar.  Not only did I indulge and eat all that my stomach could handle, I also requested to go home with more to take for lunch the next day.  For the rest of that school year, I had caviar sandwiches every single day.  No one else in grade 2 would dare try but I was more than happy to have it all to myself.    I thank my Bubby everyday for making caviar a part of my life, it really makes her happy to know just how much I appreciate the gift she was able to give to me.  

Spasiba Baboushka y Diedoushka toja! 

Little bubbles of heaven!

Fast forward two years to the summer of 1994.  My Father, Mother, two sisters and I stuffed ourselves into our Isuzu Trooper and headed down to Kennebunkport Maine.  For two weeks prior to our adventure, all my father could talk about was how delicious lobsters are and how he couldn't wait for me to try them.  We arrived to what we were told was going to be a wonderful relaxing week-end, oh boy were we wrong!  The beautiful hotel? HA! What a total dump!  Remember this was way before the magical internet powers that we have today.  We jumped back into the car and drove from hotel to hotel hoping and praying that one would have a vacancy.  Our luck they were all booked!  
My Dad decided to make the best of our situation and take us out for the real lobster meal he had been promising us.  As we sat down at the big picnic tables at Nunan's Lobster Hut, I couldn't help but look at all the interesting decor all over the place.  It makes you feel as though you're part of the fishing experience.  The lobsters arrived and I was in shock!  We were going to eat these?  Alright Dad, show me how!  And that he did!  We sat and ate these beautiful red creatures and with every sweet buttery bite, I fell in love!  

Picture from Nunan's Lobster Hut

We toughed it out in the dumpy hotel for that one night, sleeping on our own jackets and blankets from the car.  The next morning we packed up and headed to the beach to play before starting our long drive home.  To my surprise they had a "casse-croûte" right on the beach!  This wasn't your typical hot dog, cheeseburger and poutine joint but a more Maine-like seafood shack; scallops, clams, shrimps and fresh fish are all served up casual style.  Obviously being a true food lover at heart, I asked my dad to get us something yummy.  He arrived with a bag filled with something fried.  I stuck my hand right in, grabbed something crispy and popped it into my mouth.  The crisp crunch of the lightly battered sweet tender shrimp was too overwhelming to contain.  As I grabbed the bag away from my Dad he laughed and started back to get more.  He knew he had created a monster!  

How can something so weird looking be so delicious!


Lobster twist
serving 4

4 lobster live
a couple of lemons
1/3 C salter butter
2 or 3 large cloves of garlic chopped
1/4 C Italian seasoned breadcrumbs

Fill one large pot, big enough for both lobsters to have plenty of room to swim, with water and bring to a rolling boil.  I like to slice a lemon and throw it into the boiling water, some salt and fresh cracked black pepper too!  I tend to always put the lobster upside down into the pot, they seem to fit better that way, but I guess you can put them in any way as long as they are in there!  A one and a half pounder needs to boil for 12-14 minutes, make sure the lobster's shell is completely red.  Extract the creatures from the pot and let stand for a few minutes, be very careful they will be extremely hot!  In a small sauce pan melt butter with garlic making a clear butter sauce and set aside.  Grab the sharpest knife you can find and get a lobster stomach side up on a cutting board.  In one sharp stroke chop the lobster's head off.  Place the tip of your sharp knife where the tail meats the body and push down hard cutting the tail in half.  Turn the lobster around and do the same tot he body towards where the head used to be.  Repeat to all four lobsters.  Lay the lobsters on a cookie sheet and brush with some of the garlic butter mixture then sprinkle with the bread crumbs.  Place them in oven on broil for a really quick minute, you just want to crisp the breadcrumbs.   Served with a wedge of lemon and the remaining garlic butter in small dipping dishes and enjoy.  Do not forget to suck the meat right out of the legs! 


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