Life is full of funny little deals, even in our dollar-based economy. Someone does a favor for you and you return it with something you can contribute. I walk your dog and you tell me about a novel-writing challenge that will be fun next November. You pick up the newspaper when I'm gone for a weekend and I roll out your trash cans when it's your turn to be away. Favors can be fun, especially when they involve Dungeness crabs.
We were walking Cora down to town to get a cup of coffee when we ran into our friend Ron. Ron is a builder who has always done beautiful work on our house and he's a nice guy, so we always enjoy seeing him. On one job, we traded with him for his building services and he got a terrific birthday present for his wife out of the deal. Win-win.
On this day, we chatted about his vintage 1965 Volkswagen and he was remarking that he doesn't use it enough to keep the battery charged. We have a trickle charger we don't use, so we offered to drop it off at his house. When we asked where he was headed, he said he was going crabbing with a friend. We left the trickle charger on his front porch and, a few days later, four lovely Dungeness crabs landed on our steps in a big white bucket.
We called our pals Janie and Jack to see if they were in a crabby mood; they confirmed that they were. We spread out newspapers several layers thick on the dining room table, laid out the nutcrackers and picks, set out wine glasses and plates of butter. They brought the wine and the sourdough baguette; we supplied the crabs and the venue.
I had never cooked crabs myself - normally, we buy them already cleaned and cracked. I didn't even have a pot big enough for four healthy specimens. So, while I was out grocery shopping I stopped at the local hardware store for this stainless steel monster; it holds something like 16 gallons of water. When the salted water had come to a rolling boil, we committed four counts of crabicide. While the crabs were cooling in the kitchen sink, we watched a YouTube video about how to clean and crack them (don't you just love YouTube?) and we were good to go.
Easily one of the best deals we have ever made.
Labels: Dungeness crab