Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lobster Rolls, Fiddleheads and Black Flies

We had been warned from several people about Black Fly season here in Maine. We bought head nets, and some very sophisticated Thermacell insect repellant. We had heard that the flies bite and are very painful. As soon as we got to the park and stepped out of the truck the flies were all over. They are very annoying but so far, they don’t seem to be interested in biting us, just flying into our face, ears, and nose. Of course, our head nets and Thermacell’s were in the RV!

[Black flies: Bites are shallow, and accomplished by first stretching the skin using teeth on the labrum and then abrading it with the maxillae and mandibles, cutting the skin and rupturing its fine capillaries. Feeding is facilitated by a powerful anticoagulant in the flies' saliva].

We spent a couple of hours this morning with the Park Manager as he showed us our job duties.

Then, this evening we went to a wonderful restaurant in Presque Isle called The Governor’s.

Mark tried a lobster roll for the first time. It was really good. I, of course, had fried shrimp.

The lobster is very sweet.

We had been seeing Fiddleheads for sale along the roadway and when we got to the restaurant they had Fiddleheads as a choice of vegetable. We tried them. They were interesting. They sort of smelled like cabbage and broccoli and fresh mowed grass. They tasted a little like broccoli. I didn’t care for them but Mark liked them okay.

[Fiddleheads, also known as fiddlehead ferns, are a springtime delicacy consisting of the tightly coiled unfurled fronds of a new fern, named because of their resemblance to the curled decoration at the end of a stringed instrument].

Fiddleheads - just add vinegar and eat.

Presque Isle is a really nice little town about 5 miles from Aroostook State Park. We’ll have plenty of time to explore the area in the next three months.


  1. The crab is good in Maine, too. You can buy whole lobsters and cook them yourself, or buy them already cooked. If you refrigerate a whole lobster, you will find it's very easy to extract the meat because it shrinks back from the claws. Whole lobsters in Maine are cheap and you should buy them while you're there! Use the meat in scrambled eggs -- excellent, decadent breakfast!

    Also, don't miss the blueberries. My preference was in pies. We had a blueberry/cream cheese pie to die for when we were in Maine. It was probably the best pie I've ever eaten in my life!

    Down on the coast in diners and such (cheap palces) the deep fried white fish is freshly caught (that morning) -- it's excellent. Hopefully you can get that up near Aroostook State Park, too.

  2. From the size of the lobsters I've seen in the stores here, I don't think I have a pot big enough in the RV to cook one! We'll just have to go out to eat a lot :)
    I'll be looking out for a blueberry/cream cheese pie, that sounds wonderful!

  3. Goodness! I haven't thought of fiddlehead fern for years! It won't be long before you start seeing rhubarb pie on the menu of your favorite restaurant. Have you ever eaten that? And the blueberries, especially the wild ones, really are wonderful -- very small but crazy flavorful! (Sharon)

  4. Hi Sharon -
    After I covered the fiddleheads with parmesan cheese they weren't too bad but I don't think I'll ever get to like them much. I'll have to try rhubarb pie. I've never had it before. I know I like blueberries!
    We bought some real maple syrup when we were in Virginia - WOW - I could drink that stuff with a straw!

  5. You should be able to buy more maple syrup up in Maine. We always buy some when we go up to the NE for vacations. That stuff is wonderful!

    You've never had rhubarb pie? Sometimes people make rhubarb/strawberry pie, which is beautiful and sweeter than just rhubarb. Rhubarb is very tart and needs quite a bit of sugar to sweeten it. It's good, though. Kind of has a sweet/tart taste.

    Yes, you need a big pot to boil a lobster! I guess there's not a need for a pot that large in most RV's.