Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Oyster Stuffing / Dressing

A favorite from the Recipe page.


* 1 lb bread, including crusts (10 cups packed and cubed)
* 1 pint oyster, raw
* 4 -8 tablespoons butter
* 1 cup celery, finely chopped
* 2 cups onions, chopped
* 1/4-1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced
* 1 tablespoon sage, minced
* 1 tablespoon thyme, minced
* 3/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, ground
* 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
* 1/8 teaspoon clove, ground
* 1 cup chicken stock
* 2 large eggs, well beaten (optional) 
  
1. Preheat oven to 400°F and toast the bread until golden brown on the middle rack. turn into a large bowl.
2. Meanwhile heat butter until melted and foam subsides. Add onions and celery and cook about 5 minutes until tender.
3. Remove from heat and stir in the spices.
4. Stir in the bread cubes, and drained oysters and toss well, until the stuffing is moist, but not packed together; stir in the stock and eggs. Put in bird while moist, remoisten and adjust spices as necessary. If cooked in a casserole dish at 350°F until heated through with a crust on the outsides, 25 to 40 minutes.
5. Oyster juice may be used in place of some of the stock.


I probably need to edit that , but Happy Thanksgiving anyway!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Snobbery and Elitism in Fishing

Or , I found a hornets' nest , and I have a stick to poke it with.

I've had an urge to write something about this for a long time , and indeed I've hinted at it in several places around the web , but never felt confident enough as a writer to actually tackle the issue head on. Things like this have a way of getting blown out of proportion , and certainly what follows may cause an uproar. I hope not. I'd much rather see it start a genuine discussion about our attitudes toward each other , and maybe cause some of us to have a moment of reflection. I know I've personally thought about it a great deal , so understand when I point a finger it is directed at myself as much as it is anyone else. Bear in mind that this is not an attack on any one group , but an attempt to explore an unsettling aspect of what happens when people are passionate about a sport.

We are all a bunch of snobs who lord our superiority over the unwashed masses with great pride in our perceived accomplishments. I know I'm guilty. I've seen and experienced it from both sides in all types of situations related to fishing.

It's usually a pretty straightforward graduation into the ranks of snobbery , and it normally plays out like this : person goes fishing with no luck , eventually learns how to catch fish consistently , quits wearing the skunk. After that , it's fairly easy to think of yourself as an expert , and to look down on the way other people fish. That's when things start to go downhill. At first you're pretty open with how you catch fish , but soon you guard your secrets with a fervor usually reserved for secret societies and classified government documents. It feels good to have a chuckle at the expense of the noob with the bobber and worms who isn't catching anything , while clearly , CLEARLY , a number 8 whatchamajigger on a 6x tippet is what is required.. Maybe you realize that at one time you were the new kid , and maybe you don't

Another way that snobbery creeps into fishing is through the gear snobs. The guys and gals who look like they've jumped out of the pages of an Orvis Catalog and wouldn't dare wet wade in a pair of old sneakers. The smug old men toting around handmade bamboo rods that cost as much as a used car. The surf fishermen that mock anyone using a spinning reel because , obviously , the drag will wear out while fighting a big fish. I once witnessed a gentleman fishing for trout using a baitcasting rod with an automatic fly reel strapped to it filled with 20 lb. mono and tipped with a Rooster Tail. I laugh every time I think of that guy , not because I look down on him , but because I know several fly fishermen who would have a full blown brain hemmorage  were they to encounter him on a stream. Even funnier , he was actually catching trout with the monstrosity when I left him.

It doesn't just crop up in fly fishing , either. Sometime around the late '90s - early 2000's , a friend and I were bass fishing from the shore of a local lake using Zoom Super Flukes. Keep in mind the fluke was a relatively new bait at the time , and I live in worm and crankbait country. It came as no surprise that we were soon greeted by a series of loud guffaws from a boat just offshore followed by " Lookit that Cleatus , they's using dem Banjo minners" and then some more braying laughter. It died down to a nervous silence when they saw us catch a few bass and pickerel while they caught nothing. I'd wager that one of those clowns ordered a set of Banjo Minnows the next time the infomercial came on. More recently , we've had the debate raging over the Alabama Rig , with some even dismounting their high horses long enough to yell that we are hurting the fish by foul hooking a few.

An even greater display of snobbery comes from the catch and release crowd. I'm not sure why I find them so abrasive , other than the fact that they act like you've kidnapped a child when you mention eating a fish you caught. I understand wanting to keep from eating all of our fish to the brink of extinction , but I can't understand the reasoning behind declaring all fish off limits. A lot of these people will eat commercially caught fish , which clearly indicates a deep misunderstanding of which method of fishing is more sustainable in the long term. I can't fathom how it seems OK to eat a fish brought to market after being caught in an indescriminate trawler net , while claiming it is a great injustice for someone to eat one caught on rod and reel.

Pier and boat fishing is not immune to the ugliness. I've heard derogatory remarks about "Rent Rods" in reference to people that don't own their own rods and reels , and rent them from the pier or boat. I've spent at least some time as a rent rodder , having forgotten to take a rod on a short trip a few times. Does that mean I don't know what I'm doing? Nope , it just means I needed a rod.

If we can step away from our delusions of grandeur every once in a while , we might learn something new. Even better , it might give us a chance to remember the uncertainty and wonder , the excitement , of learning to fish for the first time

Have a great weekend! Leave a comment with your thoughts about snobbery below.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Don't Be a Menance to South Fork While Drinking Your Juice in the Woods.

I'm trying to get back into fishing and blogging , but I can't launch my boat due to water levels. I'm left with other options like stocked trout or pond bass - and I can't get excited about either. I'll be back as soon as I'm fishing again. Or if I snap from a lack of fishing

Probably for trout. Probably accompanied by the sound of a diesel engine. Probably from the stock truck.

Desperate times call for desperate measures , my friends.

Probably.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Such a Shame...

First , let me say : SHAME ON YOU SANDY! You're a b****

Second , let me say : SHAME ON ANYONE WHO SAID " IT'S JUST A CATEGORY ONE" , etc.

Third , let me say  : " I'm borrowing a few pics from some of my favorite sites , credit will be given. National news doesn't ever mention a lot of this stuff , but people want and need to know."

Seriously , go check out the sites I'm linking to if you want the most accurate and up to date information about Hatteras Island.

For Fishing , visit www.FishMilitia.com

For Local News , visit www.IslandFreePress.org

Video is from ABC news , worth a look to see broader effects of the storm on barrier islands.




From fishmilitia.com




From fishmilitia.com



from fishmilitia.com

from fishmilitia.com



From fishmilitia.com - the temporary bridge necessary after Irene.



I'm adding two slide shows below this , in raw link form. Copy and paste if you have to , otherwise all credit goes to the individuals who submitted these pics to the fine people at IslandFreePress.org ....

http://islandfreepress.org/2012Archives/10.31.2012-SandyHasMovedTheSandOnHatterasIsland_.html/index.html

And another. Keep in mind that the fine people on Hatteras Island went through a similar storm last year

http://islandfreepress.org/2012Archives/10.30.2012-StormTideHasRecededButTravelToAndFromTheIslandsIsStillAProblem_.html/index.html


There it is. The east coast has had a tough time from Sandy. I know of at least four fishing piers that won't be the same for quite a while. Avalon (broken in 2 places) , Avon (damage to the "T") , and Rodanthe (lost 25-50ft. , damage to parking lot and dune)  in North Carolina. Ocean City in Maryland ( I heard it was destroyed , can't confirm.) . None of this is official , but it's what I know for now and I trust my sources.

It's with a heavy heart that I post this , my thoughts and prayers are with everyone who is suffering after Sandy's rampage in the North Atlantic