Palaver from Persimmon Crossingwith Warren Faulk
Thanksgiving Dinner 2002
This all started when one of our pet rabbits escaped and I set a live trap with apple slices to catch her or the male she had escaped to visit. As luck would have it, I caught one very fat 'possum. He seemed glad to see me as he had run out of apple. He readily accepted more apple along with canned salmon and crackers.
I showed him to a friend who said "He ain't no blackjack. The black 'uns are mean". My 'possum was light grey and seemed only interested in his next handout. I called my Grandson Benjamin (4, just) and told him I was thinking of cooking the 'possum for Thanksgiving dinner. He said " I'm going to call the police. I'm going to turn you in". Later I called and told him I was going to fix him a 'possum and peanut butter sandwich. He hung up on me. I turned the critter loose. And set my trap aside unbaited.
Next day I got into a conversation with a neighbor who said his father used to dip 'possums in boiling water (this is after the final harvest people), pull or scrape the hair off and bake it whole. This is much like preparing pork but I had never heard that this was the procedure for the noble O'possum as well. So I asked my friend Sadie if she knew how to cook a 'possum. She said "Show ... and tuttle too". Follows her discription of how to prepare 'possum which she has done many times, but still doesn't like them:
You have to get someone to kill it. I don't kill nothin'This morning I walked past my trap and there sat a "blackjack" 'possum, ready to fight. Don't tell Benjamin ...
Then you "swage"it (singe the hair off) or you can boil it a little bit and pull the hair off.
Next you take the foots off and the head and tail but you leave the skin on. "Don't want none with the skin off".
You cut him open and clean him all out and boil him for a while to get him good and clean.
Then you soak (OK marinate) him for a long time in in more vinegar, pepper and whatever spice you like.
Then you put him in a big pan and if you want to you can add some potatoes and other stuff but I don't. You take some vinegar and butter and you mop(baste) him and cook him in the oven 'til he is done.
Then you got something ... but I never ate one.
-- Warren Faulk
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