May 04 2015

Slow Fishing Countered by Fantastic Table Fare on LA Trip

Not every outdoor adventure works out as planned -- sometimes the fish just don't seem to want to cooperate and good eating tips outweigh the fishing tips from your host.

On a recent trip to the Coastal Club near Lake Charles, LA, a cold front put the bass and bluegills off their feed with our group of Sportsman Club of San Antonio anglers finding little catching action. Despite spending many hours cruising the marsh canals in search of 8-10 pound largemouths and bream that are often larger than a linebacker's hand, few keeper fish found their way into our boats. Host Bill Provine was stumped when it came to offering effective techniques to entice a bite.

However, any disappointment we might have felt from a lack of catching along the canals was more than compensated by some very fine table fare that provided some excellent eating action back at the camp.

It is hard to find any fault with more than 60 pounds of properly boiled and seasoned crawfish combined with corn on the cob and new potatoes cooked to perfection. Provine's tips for chowing down on mud bugs were pretty simple -- don't eat the crawfish with straight tails (they might have died before they were cooked) and to easily peel the delicious tails, push the tail into the body cavity first. By pushing the tail into the body and then pulling the crawfish into two sections, the tail can be easily popped out of its shell. Sometimes proper practice might require a hundred or so crawfish to develop the technique.

Provine also provided a simple, tasty tip on how to create a sauce for the fried duck, dove and wild turkey appetizers that were served to the group one evening before a main course of homemade gumbo. He claimed to have discovered the sauce recipe at a Louisianna duck camp many years ago and attributed it to an unknown woman cook.

Here is the recipe, which also works very well with fried fish or shrimp.

Jezebel Sauce
  • 1 jar (15.5 ounces) Pineapple Fruit Spread
  • 1 jar (18 ounces) Apple Jelly
  • 1 jar (5 ounces) Cream Style Prepared Horseradish
  • 1 container (.85 ounces) Ground Mustard

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl, stirring well. Refrigerate mixture in a glass jar until ready to serve.

Now, let's get eating!