To this day I don’t know exactly what he said although I do know what he meant. I had been confident for years the my Grandfather told me that “cold EATS cold.“ In retrospect, I have begun to question my young ears and wondering if his Acadian accent was saying “cold HEATS cold.”
It is 2,200 kilometers (about 1,400) miles from the front door of my childhood home to that of my Mothers place of birth. The drive is typically split over two days and is one I have done more times than I can count. I can remember doing it in pickup trucks, cars, a motorcycle, towing a tent trailer, a Transport filled with yogurt and even in a small car sitting in the middle seat for 24 hours straight.
We would drive across the country to visit family for a week (or several) before the long drive home. The return trip often involved transporting a bounty from the sea such as frozen clams, crab, shrimp or that sort of thing. If you have been reading Well Preserved lately you will know this tradition continued when we froze about 40 pounds of crab meat) and prepared to bring it home.
My parents were driving the long trek and took it in their car. We followed Pepés advice:
“Cold EATS cold.”
Look closely at the picture above – frozen crab, scallops and no ice. Each package is individually wrapped in newspaper to insulate one from the other. The final step is to put the lid on and tape it sealed.
The insulation is vital as, otherwise, the frozen bags of crag would draw cold from one another and promote early thawing. As one bag would begin to melt, it would attract cold from the one beside it to try to stay cold thus thawing it sooner.
The crab and scallops sat in the trunk of the car for almost 36 hours in August and arrived in Toronto with only the starting signs of a thaw. And icepack would promote melting.
Next time you find yourself needing to drive across country with a trunk full of frozen goodies, you have a plan! If you stay in hotels with restaurants, many will make room in their freezers for the entire package.