Are you hungry? Well then you’re in luck because today, May 11, is National Eat What You Want Day!
Pepperoni pizza and ice cream? Knock yourself out! Fried chicken and cheesecake? Have at it! Spaghetti-O’s and nutella? (That one might just be me.) Take it to the neck! Nothing is off-limits today. Forget about sugar, carbs and trans fat – order the porterhouse as rare as you want with a five-gallon bucket of barbeque sauce! Everything is on the table on National Eat What You Want Day!
So in honor of what should clearly be everybody’s favorite holiday, we here at HashtagWV are sharing a recipe for something most of us have probably never tried – batter fried snails!
Now, you may be asking yourself why we would share such a recipe, and the answer is simple…
When else would we share the recipe for batter-fried snails if not National Eat What You Want Day?
FULL DISCLOSURE – I am, by no means, a competent chef. I’ve never cooked snails and I’ve never eaten snails. Furthermore, I will not be eating snails today because today is not National Eat What You DON’T Want Day. Also, this is not my recipe – I googled it. Proper snail preparation is not information I conveniently store in my brain. But hey, you might like them, so here you go…
- One egg: The recipe doesn’t specify, but I’m assuming you should use a chicken egg. Snake eggs are kinda gross and dinosaur eggs are tough to find.
- One cup water: This sounds legit. Snails are pretty slimy so you probably want to wash the goo off first. Maybe some dish soap, also. That’s not in the recipe – that’s my suggestion.
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour: Is there singular-purpose flour? I’ve never seen it at the grocery store – nor has anyone ever said to me “don’t use my mash-tater flour, use that all-purpose stuff.”
- One tablespoon extra virgin olive oil: I always thought that was something of a static state that expired around prom night, but apparently there are levels. If “extra” isn’t available, I guess you can substitute with “super” or “reformed.”
- 1 ½ cups marinara sauce: Ooh, I can help with this one! In normal-person speak, this is approximately four of those little containers of red sauce Burger King gives you with mozzarella sticks.
- Oil for deep frying: My first thought was 10W-30, but I figured that was probably wrong. Thepioneerwoman.com says that vegetable oil is the best oil for frying, and who am I to argue?
- 24 snails: This one is a little tricky. I would not recommend finding them in your yard. But luckily – it seems Walmart sells them. (Because Walmart – why wouldn’t they sell snails?) Also, snails are apparently called “escargots.” So you can tell people you’re eating fried escargots and sound fancy.
- Whip up the egg with the water and flour in a bowl, and leave it for an hour.
- Heat up a saucepan, and throw in the snails with the olive oil and the Burger King red sauce.
- Let it simmer there on low for about 10 minutes. It should thicken up like that white paste we used in kindergarten.
- Turn on your fryer and heat the oil (not 10W-30) to 375 degrees.
- Separate your egg, water, and flour mix into two even bowls. Don’t worry about why – just do it.
- Take a snail, dip it down into the first bowl, and then fry it until it looks like a chicken nugget. Then let it dry on a paper towel. Do this with the rest of the snails.
- After frying the snails, dip them all into the second mix bowl and repeat the process. Then let them all dry again.
That’s it – you’re done. Now they’re ready, so you can eat them if you hate yourself, or give them to somebody else and go get a cheeseburger. So there you go… Happy National Eat What You Want Day everybody!
Matthew Young has been a resident of Lewisburg, WV since December 2019. Prior to arriving in West Virginia, Matthew resided in the Philadelphia area, where his reporting, commentary, and editorials have been featured in numerous local and regional publications. Previously, he has served as a scriptwriter and consultant for television, radio, and various other short-form digital-media platforms, both within the United States and internationally. Since moving to the Mountain State, Matthew spent eighteen months as senior writer/managing editor for the West Virginia Daily News and is currently an active journalist with the West Virginia Press Association.