Shrimp Creole-New Orleans Style

When we were at the New Orleans School of Cooking, this was the second dish our Chef, Pat, made for us. It was delish for sure.

  • 3 lbs. peeled shrimp
  • 1 stick butter (1/4 lb.)
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1 – 16 oz. can tomato sauce (canned, crushed or diced)
  • *1 cup onions, chopped
  • *1 cup celery
  • *1 cup green pepper, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp. dark brown sugar or best is Steen’s Cane Syrup
  • 4 thin lemon slices
  • 1/2 tsp. basil
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 6 cups cooked rice
  • 1 cup green onion, chopped (only is you must)
  • crab boil to taste

Melt butter and slowly add the flour stirring over medium heat until lightly browned. It should only be the colour of peanut butter, no darker. Remember this is a light roux.

Add the onion, green pepper, celery and garlic. Saute the vegetables until they begin to turn transparent.

Add the stock, tomato sauce, bay leaves, brown sugar or syrup, lemon slices, Joe’s Stuff, basil and thyme. Simmer all this for about 15 minutes.

Add the parsley and shrimp during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Serve over rice.

This will make enough for 8-10 people.

 

Note: The three items with a * are called the trinity in cooking terms.

Drumsticks to Love

 

Okay, the gang is coming over and  you want to make a snack to chomp on during the game. Well, here is a great one. You can vary the amounts, depending on how many people you will have over.

 

  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 16 chicken drumsticks
  • 3/4 cup Panko crumbs
  • 3/4 finely chopped pistachios
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a saucepan, melt the butter and add the honey and mustard and simmer for 7-8 minutes. Remove from h eat.

With a brush, coat the chicken legs all over with the butter mixture.

In a separate bowl, add the bed crumbs, nuts, salt and pepper and roll the legs in it to completely coat. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake until tender and brown. This should take 45-50 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

The only thing to supply now is a pile of napkins and small plates.

 

 

Vegetable Timbales

If you are making the lamb (from yesterday) or a baked ham, this would be a perfect addition. Really pretty to look at and so delicious to consume. What a winner!

 

  • 2 cups asparagus, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 2 cups sliced carrots
  • 1  tbsp. shallot, diced
  • 3 large eggs, divided
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 6 tbsp. whipping cream, divided
  • 2 tbsp. freshly grated Asiago cheese
  • 2 tbsp. blood orange juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter six 1-cup ramekins and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Butter the paper.

Steam each vegetable separately until just tender. Drain and pat dry with a paper towel. Reserve several pieces of each of the steamed vegetables and set aside. Enough to garnish the 6 ramekins.

In a food processor or blender, puree the asparagus and shallot until smooth. If necessary, drain through a fine sieve to drain excess liquid.

In a medium sized bowl, mix 1 whole egg, 1 egg yolk and 2 tbsp. whipping cream and whisk until well combined. Add 1 cup of the asparagus puree and whisk until well combined. Set aside.

Puree the cauliflower until smooth. In a medium sized bowl, mix 1 whole egg,  2 tbsp. asiago cheese and 2 tbsp. whipping cream, whisking until well combined. Add 1 cup of the cauliflower puree and whisk until well combined.  Set aside.

Puree carrots until smooth. In a medium sized bowl, mix together 1 whole egg, 2 tbsp. orange juice and 2 tbsp. whipping cream, whisking until well combined. Add 1 cup carrot puree and whisk until well combined.

Now for the fun part:

Set the ramekins in a baking dish. Add enough water to come up halfway on the sides of the ramekins. In 2 of the ramekins, pour 1/2 cup of the asparagus puree in. In 2 other ramekins, pour 1/2 cup of the cauliflower puree and finish the last 2 ramekins with 1/2 cup each of the carrot puree. Bake about 25 minutes or until a knife in the middle comes out clean. Carefully remove the baking dish from the oven and remove the ramekins and set on a rack to cool.

Run a knife around the edges of the ramekins and invert on a platter, making sure to remove the paper. Garnish each one by stacking on some of the reserved pieces, making sure to use all three on each ramekin.

 

Your guests will want to take pictures of these for sure. Damn, you did it again.

 

Oka Cheese and Peach Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

I wanted to post this yesterday but got planting our flower boxes instead so here we go today.

 

  • 2 pork tenderloins
  • pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
  • 2/3 cup finely shredded Oka cheese
  • 1/2 cup thinly slivered dried peaches
  • 2 tbsp. melted butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Trim fat and silver skin from the tenderloins. Cut in half, lengthwise almost but not clear through (just to butterfly). Open up and cover with plastic wrap. Pound out with a meat mallet to an even thickness – 1/2 inch.

Mix the seasonings together and sprinkle over the meat surface, then place the cheese along the long side of the tenderloin. Top with the cheese, and roll up on the long side (like a jellyroll) and tie off with butcher’s twice or skewer together. Set aside.

Heat a roasting pan in the oven for 10 minutes. Place the tenderloins, seam side down in the roasting pan. Brush with the melted butter and season the outside with a pinch of salt and pepper. Bake for 30 minutes, brushing twice with butter and drippings. A meat thermometer should read 160 degrees to be perfectly cooked (just a hint of pink). Remove from the oven and tent with foil, allowing to rest for about 5 minutes.

Slice on the diagonal and be sure to remove the string.

 

Trout Fillets With Fresh Crabmeat

In a word or two, yum, yum and, yum. I know you will absolutely love this.  Serve with a lemon risotto,  crisp salad, even corn on the cob, and don’t forget to have a few chilled wines set aside.

This will serve 4,  so adjust amounts accordingly if more are seated at the table.

 

  • 1  1/2 lbs Trout fillet, skin on, cut in 4 equal portions
  • 2 tsp. lemon pepper
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 2 cups light cream
  • 4 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese, cubed
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest only
  • 1/4 lb. fresh crabmeat
  • Lemon finishing salt

Season the trout with half the lemon pepper and set aside.

Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour and cook, letting bubble gently for 1 minte. Slowly add the cream and remaining lemon pepper and cook, slowly for 10-12 minutes.

Remove from the heat and add the cream cheese, stirring until completely melted. Stir in the lemon juice,  zest and crabmeat. Keep warm over a very low heat, making sure to stir it occasionally.

On  your preheated barbecue, cook the fillets, skin side down for 8-9 minutes, until it begins to flakes when pressed with a fork. A light sprinkle of lemon finishing salt will be your secret ingredient.

Put some risotto down in the middle of the plate, top with a trout fillet and spoon the crab sauce over all. Add the veggies and enjoy.

Fruit-Dulce de Leche Napoleons

What an easy dessert to make…part of it can be made the day ahead and then you are off the hook, time-wise. Use any combination of  fruit – ones you like best…could be strawberries and chocolate, bananas and the dulce de leche sauce, peaches with raspberries sauce…on and on.

  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed and cut in 6 rectangles
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tbsp. icing sugar
  • 2 bananas (your choice of fruit), cut on the diagonal
  • 1/2 cup dulce de leche (your choice as above)
  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut, toasted OR finely chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the pastry on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until golden and puffed. This should take 13-15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

Beat the whipping cream and icing sugar until stiff peaks form. With a serrated knife, cut the pastry lengthwise  in half.  Reserve 4 tops.

Divide the bananas on 4 pastry bottoms, drizzle the caramel sauce over them. Use 2 tops and 2 bottoms and make the middle layer. Top this layer with whipped cream and coconut and top with the remaining pastry tops.

If you want to take it one step further, dust with icing sugar and serve immediately. These look like they came from the Bakery not your kitchen.

Hurray for you, you did it again!

 

Lime Flavoured Trout Burgers

  • 1 lime
  • 1  1/4 lb. trout fillet, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp. fresh cut up oregano
  • 1/2 slice white sandwich bread
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup chopped seedless cucumber
  • 8 focaccia slices, thickly cut, toasted

Finely shred the peel from the lime and juice the lime to get 1 tsp. Set aside.

In a food processor combine the trout, egg, oregano, bread,  half the lime peel, pinch each of salt and pepper. Pulse 5-7 times until the mixture holds together. Scrape down the sides as necessary. Cover, and chill for half an hour.

In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, cucumber, remaining lime peel, small pinch of salt and pepper, and chill.

Shape the trout mixture into 4 patties. Preheat the barbecue, but cook these indirectly, grilling for about 5 minutes, turn over and cook a further 3-5 minutes.

Serve these on the toasted focaccia bread, add lettuce and top with the yogurt mixture. Hey, isn’t summer a wonderful thing? You betcha!

 

Asian Chicken Salad Sandwich

If  you have 10 minutes to spare, you can make this for lunch and take to school or work or…..just for you at home. This will serve 4.

 

  • 1 cup shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded green cabbage
  • 2 large carrots, grated
  • 2 tbp. fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp. soy sauce
  • 1 baguette, sliced in half lengthwise, scoop most of the inides out
  • 1/4 cup mayo, not salad dressing
  • 2 cups shredded cooked roast chicken (LEFTOVERS, PERHAPS?)
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1 jalapeno, sliced very thin

In a medium bowl toss together the cabbage, carrots, lime juice and soy sauce.

Spread 1/4 cup mayonnaise on both sides of the bun. Layer now with the chicken, the cabbage mixture and top with the cilantro leaves. Sprinkle the jalapeno  (if you are brave) and place the top half of the baguette on top. Slice into 4 pieces. Wrap, and run!

What could be better for lunch? It’s fresh, healthy and very flavourful. Yeah, I know….yummy!

Lime And White Chocolate Mousse Parfaits With Blackberries

These are super-duper parfaits and the only thing you need is a candy thermometer. Serve is your prettiest dessert dishes and you, my friend, are again the Queen of the dinner service.

  • 5 large egg yolks
  •  1/2 cup sugar
  •  1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  •  4 tsp. finely grated lime zest
  •  pinch of salt
  •  1/4 cup plus 2 2/3 cups whipping cream, well chilled
  •  3 1/2 oz. of top quality white chocolate, finely chopped
  •  5 cups of blackberries, washed

Whisk the eggs, sugar, lime juice and zest and salt in a medium metal bowl to blend well. Set bowl over a pot of simmering water and whisk until the mixture becomes very thick and a candy thermometer registers 165-170 degrees. Cool mousse down to room temperature.

Combine 1/4 cup cream and white chocolate in another bowl over hot water and stir constantly until the chocolate has almost all melted. Remove from heat and continue stirring until it has completely melted and is smooth. Set aside.

Beat remaining cream until firm peaks form. Divide the cream between the two mousses, folding in 1 cup at a time. It should be about 3
cups for each mousse.

Layer about 1/4 cup of lime mousse in 8 parfait dishes or wine glasses. Add 4-5 blackberries and layer about 1/4 cup of white chocolate mousse over the berries. Repeat with 1 more layer each and top with a few more berries.

Serve with a well chilled ice wine (burgundy ice wine is lovely) and enjoy the rest of the evening with friends.

Enchilada Sauce

Chef Paul gave us this recipe way back in 2012 and I am just now getting to it. I added the chocolate myself for the extra richness.

 

  • 2 dried ancho chillies
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • pinch of oregano
  • pinch of cumin
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 oz. darkest chocolate

Soak the ancho peppers in hot water for 15 minutes.

Remove the stems and seeds, then chop.

Saute the chopped peppers and onion in the vegetable oil until tender.

Add the tomato, raisins, cumin, oregano, chocolate and chicken broth and simmer for 15 minutes longer.

Transfer all to a blender and puree until smooth.

 

This is the ultimate sauce for true Mexican dishes.

 

Turkey Pot Pie

Don made turkey soup from scratch and we have almost finished that and then, after we ate turkey for about a week, he made 10 turkey pot pies. 4 large ones (feeds 2) and individual ones. They are so darn yummy. The dishes are our own and the two little turkeys were made by my (at the time) very young granddaughter, Sydney.

  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery sticks, peeled  and diced
  • 1 small onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 garlic clove, mashed
  • 3 tbsp. flour
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 1 cup half and half cream
  • 1/2 tsp. majoram
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. crushed rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp. sage
  • 1/2 tsp. tarragon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 cup peas
  • 4 cups cooked turkey, chopped in 1 inch cubes

In a large pot, saute the first 4 ingrediednts until soft, and add 3 tbsp. flour and cook for approximately 2-3 minutes.

One cup at a time, add the chicken stock to deglaze and thicken the sauce and then add 1 cup half and half cream. Now add all the dry ingredients and bring to a boil, then lower the temperature and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the corn, peas and turkey and simmer for about 8-10 minues until all is tender. If it is too thick, add a little more stock.

Fill baking dishes or a couple of  9 inch  pie plates with the filling and top with your favourite pastry recipe.

Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake at 375 degree oven for 35 minutes. Remove and let cool on a rack.

If not eating right away, wrap with saran and then tin foil and place in the freezer until the next time you get a turkey craving.

Yummy!

Silky Butternut Squash Bisque

This is truly a super winner! You may think you don’t like squash, BUT give this a try and I promise you, you will make it often.

 

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled and cubed  (1″ – 1  1/2″)
  • 2 stalks celery, peeled and chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 50 g butter
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 litres vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 250 mls whipping cream

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a large baking sheet, place cubed squash in one layer and bake for 45 min. Let cool, remove from pan and deglaze.

Heat a large pot over medium heat, then add 2 tbsp. vegetable stock. Now add the celery, onions, garlic, carrots and stir, cooking until soft.

Add the flour and continue stirring and cook a further 2 minutes. Add the stock , cream, squash and deglazed juice. Bring to a boil then turn down the temperature and simmer for about 50-60 minutes.

With a hand held emulsifier, (I call it a motorboat blender) blend until very, very smooth and strain*, making sure to press it all through. If there is any pulp, simply discard. Garnish with Creme Fraiche (recipe below).

* If  you use your blender,  you may have to strain this bisque, otherwise, it is not necessary. It is sooooooo smooth.

 

Creme Fraiche

  • 3 parts whipping cream
  • 1 part buttermilk

Stir together until well combined. Put in a glass jar or container, cover with saran wrap and poke a few holes in the saran. Sit it on the counter for 2 nights then refrigerate for up to 1 week. (If this is summertime, only sit it out for 1 night).

This is truly sumptuous and oh, with the left over buttermilk, maybe your perfect husband will make pancakes the next day. Yup! mine did. Gotta love that man!

 


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