Wednesday, September 21, 2011

BOILED PEANUTS

It's been a busy-but-not-much-accomplished time since we returned from the wedding, and my brain is just a big ole fuzzy spot where my putting-together-words section used to be.   I hope to get it cranked up and running again sometime, or at least find the spot where it IS, but for now, all I have to offer is one of those lick and a promise memories of a little moment, repeated every time we travel South.   

When we were in the roadside stand in GA last week, Chris asked the yearly question:  "Do you have any GREEN peanuts?"    Green ones are pulled up, and grow actually ON the roots, beneath the ground.   They're actually a legume, not a NUT, and I always find myself wanting to mutter that as Leg---yooooom-uh, in the manner of a haughty waiter.

My memories of growing them are of the great pickup-loads of the entire plants,  yanked up from the earth bringing roots and dirt, and laid all over the front porch.    We'd take them stem by stem, pulling off the little nodules for tossing into tubs for washing, and throwing the plants back into the truck-bed for plowing back into the land.   It's fun, like digging potatoes and looking for that next lovely little nugget, only they come to YOU.

And we seem to be early or late, every time for the crop, settling for the dry heft of a couple of the orange-net bags.    Of course, there was the usual bag of hot ones straight from the big old boiler, salty and soft, which I cracked gently on the fault-lines and handed to him on the half shell, one after another as he drove.   He tipped each tiny bowl into his mouth like a little oyster and followed each dozen or so by a big swallow of ice-cold Dr. Pepper.  

We have that thing down to a science now---I cover my lap and his front with paper towels, open the bag of peanuts inside the plastic market bag, and crack them one at a time, leaving half-a-shell in the laid-out outside bag.   I hold the full half right at his hand, and then he flips the empty back into the open bag in my lap.   Of course, I'm a salty, grubby-with-brown-juice mess halfway to my elbows, but a quick wash with a bagged washcloth and the next rest-top tend to that.   It's a silly little ritual we do when we head home---every time. 

He enjoys it a lot, because we’ve usually been out of the freezer ones for a while.

See?   Anything I try to say comes out like being stoned to death with popcorn.  

moire non, I hope.

8 comments:

Keetha said...

What a lovely picture! We have friends in town who boil peanuts when they watch ballgames, as a snack before supper club - I love them! (The friends and the boiled peanuts.)

My granddaddy (who lived in Shelby, Miss.) loved them. Thanks for jogging my memory.

Anonymous said...

Aren't those lovely routines precious beyond words? The special times you and yours spend doing things that would go unremarked by less aware folks. You are so lucky to have these things to cherish AND the introspection to be grateful for them. It ain't popcorn-stones coming out of your mouth, it's a precious gem of a moment you and Chris have, that you are sharing with us. Thanks for the privelege.

- Mike (since my work network won't let me sign in as SAST)

racheld said...

Keetha,

I KNEW you were a boiled-peanut girl!!

And Mike---You're always TOOOO kind. My mind is feebling, I tell you---fuzzy and feebling.

And, if it's failing as well---did you ever tell me if it's ST, TNG or any of the others you're fondest of? It's like naming Bashful---I watched them all, but always forget DS9.

Anonymous said...

The Star Trek thing could be a long story on another blog, but I suspect it would become tedious very quickly. So short answer: When I was a boy I watched the original series after school and loved it. My memory being what it, er, was, I memorized most of the lines, production details, casts, etc without meaning to. This lead to a lot of trivia discussions in my early adulthood that nearly cost me my bride. (See? A blog post it could be!) I actually to this day can recite CRAP from a number of shows that I got to watch - the cast and episode progression of The Second Hundred Years (remember that one?) or much of the dialogue from The Wild Wild West, end credit details from Dark Shadows, the pathetic list goes on. But Star Trek was one that I was not alone in, as there were geeks aplenty even then. So through grade school and high school it sort of fed on itself.

I really enjoyed TNG - much better writing and production - and some of DS9, and very little of Enterprise.

As to why it is my screen name.... it is because of YOU, dear. I wanted to post on your blog comments, and not realizing I could do so anonymously I spent months, on and off, trying to come up with a screen name I could remember and found suitable that wasn't taken. I finally started combining words, and the first combination that worked was this one.

See? The truth is a lot less interesting than the fiction. And the story much more interesting than the teller. :-)

- M

Patsy said...

I ate a boilded peanut just once! Not a boilded peanut girl,but I enjoyed the post.

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

Racheld...I have never in my entire life had a boiled peanut. Never. I'm beginning to be aware of many, many things I have never done..and now I never will do them.
Your story made me miss two things very much. First my husband of 43 years, Patrick. Because we used to do the very same thing but not with boiled peanuts. We did it with huge Bing Cherries during Cherry season. It hurts to remember and yet it is such a sweet memory. I miss him.
With us it was the pits that came back into the bag on my lap. What a wonderful memory ..and you will always have it.
Love and hugs to you,
Mona

Justabeachkat said...

Oh.My.Word what I wouldn't give for some of those yummy things tonight!

Yum oh!

Hugs,
Kat

Tonja said...

THERE IS NOTHING...NOTHING AS GOOD AS BOILED PEANUTS AND A COLD DR. PEPPER! OH, MY! THE FLAVORS WERE MADE FOR EACH OTHER! AND, I NEVER, EVER EAT THEM UNLESS I HAVE A BIG BAG. CAUSE I WANT MAORE THAN A FEW. YOU KNOW, A FEW IS NEVER ENOUGH! DOTHAN AND SURROUNDING AREA IS KNOWN AS THE PEANUT CAPITAL OF THE WORLD. I DON'T KNOW HOW TRUE THAT IS, BUT THEY HAVE CLAIMED IT FOR A LOOONG TIME. WE HAVE A PEANUT FESTIVAL IN THE FALL EVERY YEAR. THEY HAVE THESE HUGE OLD BARRELL THROUGHOUT THE FAIRGROUNDS AND THEY BUILD FIRES UNDER THEM. THEY KEEP THEM GOING FOR A LONG TIME AND BOIL THE PEANUTS RIGHT THERE. YOU CAN WALK OVER THE FAIR GROUNDS AND GET A CUP FULL AND ABOUT TIME YOU ARE OUT OF PEANUTS, YOU WILL COME UPON ANOTHER BARREL. I GUESS YOU COULD WALK AND EAT ALL NIGHT!