This morning, I left my bed and climbed into bed with Gary, naked. I cuddled up next to him and stroked his arm. I tiptoed my fingers up his chest and cooed...
This is because Thursday I was sitting at work and got an urgent phone call from Caroline. "Get a pen and paper. You want this phone number." The number was for a place selling barbecue and crispy snoots! Advertising! On the radio! In Illinois, okay, but not East Saint Louis Illinois (or East Mordor, as we say), instead it was in Edwardsville Illinois. A little college town. No murders there that I know of. So we drove the mere forty miles over the river and found Bulley's Smokehouse in a little strip mall.
I got snoots, pulled pork, applesauce, and "fried mashed potato balls," which means someone thought "potato croquettes" might not go well with barbecue.
Here's what it looked like when it came out (clockwise: applesauce, 'fried mashed potato balls,' garlic bread, pulled pork, snoots):
Here's what it looked like when I was done (snoots minus one bite):
Let me explain. These snoots were not the Snoots of My Youth, in form or substance.
I asked our waitress why there was no nostril, because that was in my memory the best part. (Mmmm, tender tender nostril.) She reported the cooks chased the waitresses around with the nostrils and then threw them away. (Yes, wasting food, Wilma would be appalled). I exclaimed, "But - that's the best part!" Gary added facetiously, "The tenderloin of the snoot. The snoot fillet , if you will." If I recall, it was the only part I liked to eat.
Substance - The Snoots of My Youth were not deep-fried. I know the cartilage of the snoot is what gives it the crunchy texture. But these snoots tasted like very strong pork rinds that have marinated in bacon fat, then been fished out, re-fried, and covered with sauce. The Snoots of My Youth had a tender texture that grew more chewy the further you got from the snoot tip. They were very well done, but certainly not crispy. The snoots I had twenty-seven years ago had a texture like burnt ends, or the tip of a brisket.
I'm not entirely against deep fried protein, but the taste was too strong and the texture was too oily. I only took a bite; Gary ate almost an entire snoot before he got tired of it. I also don't like Fun-Yuns and Pork Rinds after that one bite. Now, I might like a deep-fried turkey. Well, except for the wings, because really the people who eat wings are eating armpits, and that is just gross.
At any rate, the adventure allowed me to clarify that what I am looking for is Snoot Avec Nostril, well-done. And I must confess the croquettes were fabulous, and the applesauce? Did you know? Applesauce is actually made from little diced apples! The applesauce was just divine. It made me want to make some applesauce in my kitchen. Then, Gary said he might be able to eat dessert, and ordered one serving of "Drunken Bread Pudding," hold the ice cream, and we got this:
That's a dinner plate. That single serving was the size of a throw pillow. The new Harry Potter book. My upper arm. But it was excellent.
We took the spare snoots home for Manbitch, since he likes odd food. I still have a lead on the Snoots of my Youth, I just need to call Red's BBQ by UMSL and check and see if they keep the nostril and use the slow-roast preparation.