September has brought with it the bustle of preparing for our annual long weekend at the beach (which can run anywhere from three to six days) and the catching up that comes after. And so apologies for absence.
This year's respite was mercifully rain free. It was also free of photos, but full of good eating. We made our annual stop at Beach to Bay Seafood in Princess Anne to visit with Rich and Diane Evanusa and eat their fresher-than-fresh seafood. K had a whopper of a soft crab sandwich, two fat crabs balanced between white bread with tomato and lettuce, as well as Diane's homemade cole slaw and mustardy potato salad. I inhaled my own version of a fried seafood combo platter: several gorgeous fried oysters that must have been at least three inches in diameter, a sweet grouper fillet, fries (natch), and Diane's homemade stewed tomatoes, which were excellent, though I still prefer the pickled beets, sadly unavailable that day. Their rice pudding is also to die for.
From there we drove north to Delmar, Delaware to the not quite one year old Evolution Craft Brewing Company. Wednesday through Sunday $5 gets you five generous samples of their brews from the inevitable seasonal pumpkin beer, Jaques Au Lantern, made Belgian-style, to the coffee-spiked Rise Up Stout. (The Exile ESB is my favorite.)
It turned out to be a fish-filled weekend (and why shouldn't it when you're at the beach?). Twice we drove north to Rehoboth to eat at Salt Air Kitchen for fish stew and halibut over lentils (Thursday) and baked bluefish and corvino (Friday), never mind the white anchovy "pizzas" and chorizo and date skewers. Saturday I made fish tacos with fresh tuna, and Sunday we hit Rehoboth yet again, this time for Chinese at Shawn Xiong's excellent Confucius where we carried out salt and pepper shrimp, cumin beef, fiery hot pepper pork, and searing sauteed string beans--a feast made complete with a bottle of rose.
In between eating I walked the beach, watched the U.S. Open and far too many HGTV shows in a cable tv gorge akin to pounding junk food, did a little sewing, read Peter Robinson's latest Inspector Banks mystery, counted the brown pelicans, saw one dolphin and one oystercatcher, the latter picking its way across the beach at breakfast time. It was a pleasure to be away from home.
And it is a pleasure to be back.