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Mother's Day menu has scallops and memories

Mother's Day is on the way, and I'm thinking I'll be dining on Atlantic sea scallops — the big, sweet, fleshy kind that taste best broiled in butter and sprinkled with chopped garlic, fresh cut basil and bread crumbs.

Typically, I try to support the local fishermen by opting for Florida catch, usually gulf shrimp served scampi style. It's all part of the acclimation trek I've been on since moving south in 1991. But scallops are an old-time favorite dating back to my youth, when fish was served up every Friday in the mostly Irish Catholic Boston suburb I grew up in.

Now I've got a hankering for days gone by, so scallops are on the Mother's Day menu, even though two of my three kids aren't all that fond of seafood.

Let them eat peanut butter and jelly.

This is my special holiday, after all, one I share with the legions of others who captured the attention of corporate America by managing to reproduce like all mammals do. There's lots of peddling going on this week; flowers, candy, greeting cards, jewelry and department store fliers featuring some rather pricey denim capris that promise, "We're not your daughter's jeans."

Pity, I was sort of digging the "juniors low-rider" look, complete with middle-age bulge that can be tamed, these days, by a slimming product called Spanx that promises not to be your mother's girdle.

I'll just settle for a home-cooked meal prepared by seafood-hating kids who, as part of their collective gift, will shop the local fish market that regularly stocks scallops that are harvested in the waters off Cape Cod, right around the future site of the nation's very first off-shore turbine wind farm.

Timing is everything, and so after nearly nine years of government reviews and lawsuits brought by environmentalists, Native Americans and local residents, Cape Wind got federal approval last week, just as the Coast Guard was gearing up to set the Gulf of Mexico on fire in a failed attempt to contain what has turned into our nation's worst oil spill.

Some 5,000 barrels of oil were still leaking into the gulf on Tuesday, one day before British Petroleum announced it had capped one of three leaks on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig that exploded April 20, killing 11 workers. Meanwhile, controversy has continued over the environmental and aesthetic impact that 130 wind turbines will have on Nantucket Sound.

Now lawsuits abound for both BP and Cape Wind.

But harnessing the wind is looking like a fair energy-providing alternative, especially when you consider the untold environmental and financial impact this oil spill has wrought. Indeed, support seems to be growing for similar proposed wind farms in Lake Michigan and off the Delaware coast.

The "Drill, Baby, Drill" chant has been muted somewhat as politicos of all stripes backtrack. The winds are shifting as oil laps the Louisiana shoreline, and the acclimated shrimp lover keeps a wary watch as this giant, mutating oil slick bobs its way to who-knows-where else in the Gulf of Mexico.

Michele Miller can be reached at miller@sptimes.com or at (727) 869-6251.

Mother's Day menu has scallops and memories 05/05/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 5, 2010 8:59pm]
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