It all started with the ice cubes. I had limes, salt, and some tequila bottled in Hood River, Oregon. Now I needed ice cubes.
When we’re motorhoming, ice cubes are a feast or famine thing. Our more upscale fellow travellers have icemakers in their fridges, but we have to remember to put water in the ice cube trays (at a time we’re not planning to drive and slosh water all over the freezer) and then ration out the cubes one by one, or else buy a bag of ice cubes (which is too big to fit in the freezer) and use lots of ice cubes for everything before they all melt. (Is your vichyssoise cold enough, dear?)
So I started listing the must-have things our next motorhome would need: an ice maker, one of those sun-screens that goes on the awning so you don’t get too hot while sipping margaritas, an ice maker, a stereo with a remote control so you don’t spill your margarita when you get up to change stations, an ice maker….
Anyway, Margaret, being the more organized one, told me to settle down and pointed to the nice bag of ice cubes she had been making and storing in the freezer. Happy and cooler, I could now get down to what I really wanted to talk about – clams. And clam chowder.
We both were craving clam chowder yesterday. Margaret’s idea of making clam chowder is to start by taking the shovel, bucket, and rubber boots and heading down to the beach here at Birch Bay for fresh clams. Laudable but too much work, I said. Maybe if we were down at Kino Bay (on Mexico’s west coast) where we merely had to stand knee-deep in the surf and scoop up handfuls of baby clams by merely dipping our hands into the incoming waves. Besides, I added, the tide is probably in.
Canned clam chowder will do in a pinch — a nice on-the-road lunch paired up with some french bread. But this was going to be dinner.
We compromised. We’d make do with canned clams.
Margaret rummaged through the crisper. Sweet Walla-walla onions, celery, baby carrots, a cob of corn, Yukon Gold potatoes, a slice of lean bacon. She chopped and sautéed. I shucked and cooked the corn, and zipped off the kernels. She stirred and simmered. I stirred and simmered.
Not surprisingly, the fuss was worth it. Creamy clam chowder, home baked bread, a glass of wine, and a gorgeous sunset followed by a rising full moon. Can it get any better?