These are topped with leftover pulled pork & pickled green tomatoes.
As a Southern woman of a certain age, it’s assumed that you can do a few things well. You can write a proper thank you note. You can drink good bourbon straight. And you can make a solid deviled egg.
I recently found out that one of my most quintessentially Southern lady friends doesn’t know how to do #3, so we remedied that last night.
The great thing about deviled eggs is you can make any flavor as long as you have a tasty base to start with. Mayo helps with that, but mustard goes a long way, as does pickle juice, the secret to All Good Things. Also important: axe the sweet relish most people use. That tip isn’t grandma-sanctioned, but it will give you a better “blank” slate to start with.
18 organic eggs
3 tbsp Duke’s mayonnaise
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp yellow mustard
1 tbsp pickle juice
1 tsp black pepper
salt to taste
paprika or cayenne
- Boil, cool and peel your eggs. (If you haven’t tried the hot-start method, see below. They’ll peel much easier.)
- Slice them in half and put all the yolks in one bowl. (And you don’t have to slice them vertically; Husk does them horizontally, and they are the devil masters.)
- Mash the eggs with a fork and add the remaining ingredients. Mix well. Taste and season.
- Separate yolk mix into 4 bowls (see below).
- For each ingredient, dice a 1/2 cup of your topping of choice and stir it into one bowl.
- Fill a Ziploc bag with the mix and cut a corner off. Pipe some filling into each egg.
- Top each egg with a 1-inch piece of the ingredient used in the filling. Chill until face-stuffing time.
The smoked trout variety at Husk. Can I get a swoon from all my fellow fatgirls.
With 18 eggs, you can make a bunch of kinds, but 4 different toppings works well for 18 eggs. Choose from any of the below, or use whatever you’ve got in the fridge — as long as the ingredient isn’t too sweet, anything is good stuff in an egg.
- Smoked salmon or trout
- Pickled anything – green tomatoes, cucumbers, okra, etc.
- Ham (country or regular, shaved)
- Pulled pork
- Raw tuna (topped with a dollop of wasabi)
- Pimento cheese (what up, Marge)
- Truffle oil
The fresher the egg, the harder it will be to peel when hard-boiled. This method makes them easier to de-shell without totally destroying them.
- Lower your eggs straight from the fridge into already-boiling water.
- Lower the heat to the barest simmer.
- Cook the eggs for 11 minutes.
- Shock them in ice water and let them chill for 15 minutes.
- Peel under cool running water.
My favorite thing about talking to some of our less-cheffy friends is that they make you feel super impressive and creative, even when your ideas are pretty standard. For example, Liza was recently telling The Chef and me about how there’s only so much you can do with chicken and vegetables, and you just can’t make pork tenderloin for two.
To which I said, um, depends on how large and fattening your portion sizes are, but that’s really not the point. Tenderloin is surprisingly simple to make, and it’s just about the best snack ever.
So when The Chef told Liza about this sweet and tangy marinade and the ways you could re-purpose your leftovers – tenderloin tacos, quesadillas, on buns with horseradish or honey mustard – she acted like he had just discovered fire. It was hilarious.
So this one’s for you, young Liza. Treat yo’self!
1 1/2 cups of maple syrup
1 cup of creole mustard
3 garlic cloves minced
1/2 cup olive oil
2 rosemary sprigs, chopped
salt and pepper
- Whisk together all ingredients.
- Pour marinade over tenderloin and marinate for 4 hours – overnight, depending upon how intense you want the flavor to be.
- Grill (or bake) until a thermometer registers 150 degrees. (If you are a little braver and like the pink, you can stop at 140.)
- Let the tenderloin rest for 30 minutes before slicing. Or, if you’re making this ahead of time for a specific occasion, refrigerate and slice when ready to serve. Tenderloin is just as good room temp.
Before Katers learned how to do more in the kitchen than boil water, this was a standard weekly dinner at Morrow Ave.
While she is clearly now a master chef, it is a testament to the goodness – and easiness – of this recipe that it was always delicious and immediately devoured.
This recipe is Susu’s version of the quintessential Southern classic, and I must admit I was pretty thrilled to find out you can just cube the cheddar cheese instead of grating it. Bloody knuckles are not appetizing.
8 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
2 pkgs broccoli, cooked and drained
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup cubed sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cup mayo
2-7 tbsp cooking sherry
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Mix all sauce ingredients together.
- Pour over chicken and broccoli in 9×12 casserole dish.
- Cook 30-35 minutes, or until a little bubbly.
So I probably should have posted these recipes last week before Thanksgiving, but I forgot and I wanted to test them out twice to get all kinks out of the way. I was lucky to have two Thanksgivings this year, a “friendsgiving” down in NOLA (which was way better then my family Thanksgiving) and family Thanksgiving. I still never want to eat again. Below is an amazing crawfish stuffing that Chef John’s family has requested a double batch of for next year. Perhaps you can save in your Thanksgiving recipe file for next year or break it out for the December holidays! Chef’s note: make sure to use dry corn bread so it soaks up all the sauce. – ts
Chef John Says: Everyone knows that the best part of Thanksgiving is the stuffing. I usually dedicate about 3/4 of my plate to it. My family always has a traditional stuffing/dressing but this past Sunday we had a pre-Thanksgiving feast at our friend’s house in New Orleans and it was decided that we should make a more NOLA-style dressing. Tanya came across this beauty: Besh’s Crawfish Corn Bread Dressing. Like ALL of Besh’s recipes, this is very easy and delicious.
You can make the corn bread ahead or use leftover corn bread. In fact, the dressing may be prepared a day ahead and kept in the refrigerator until an hour before serving. I used more andouille, hot sausage, and garlic than it calls for… obviously. This recipe makes 8–10 cups, more than enough to stuff a turkey, but at our Thanksgiving we stuff our bird separately and serve dressings like this alongside. Serves 10
4 tablespoons rendered bacon fat (I used a couple tablespoons of butter instead)
¼ pound andouille sausage, diced
¼ pound hot pork sausage meat, removed from casing
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, diced
½ green bell pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups peeled crawfish tails, chopped (you can usually find a package of frozen tails)
2 green onions, chopped
1 small jalapeño pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
Leaves from 1 sprig fresh thyme
2 tablespoons Basic Creole Spices
6 cups crumbled Basic Corn Bread
2 cups Basic Chicken Stock
½ cup heavy cream
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Freshly ground black pepper
- Put the bacon fat, andouille, and pork sausage into a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat, breaking up the pork with the back of a wooden spoon.
- When the pork sausage meat has browned, add the onions, celery, bell peppers, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the crawfish and cook for 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl with the sausage and crawfish and stir together until well combined. Spoon the dressing into a large heatproof dish.
- At this point, the dressing may be covered and refrigerated (for up to 1 day) until you are ready to bake it. Bake the dressing in a preheated 350° oven until it is piping hot and golden brown, 15–30 minutes.
I have not been seasonal in my postings. Butternut squash has been a theme these past weeks, and let’s be honest it just screams fall. Here is a very tasty take on chicken pot pie incorporating butternut squash, mushrooms, gravy, biscuits, and bacon. Do I need to say more? –ts
1 1/2 cups cubed butternut squash
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup chicken broth (preferably homemade)
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp. smoked paprika
1 tbsp. olive oil
6 slices center-cut bacon
3 portabella mushroom caps, cleaned and diced (about 3 cups)
8 oz. crimini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 cup diced onions
2 lb. chicken breasts and thighs, diced
salt to taste
buttermilk biscuits (make your own if you can, but I can’t bake)
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Place the butternut squash, milk, chicken broth and garlic in a small pot and set over medium-low heat. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the squash is tender. Remove from heat and blend with an immersion blender until smooth. Stir in the smoked paprika and set aside.
- While the squash cooks, set a large skillet over medium heat. Once it’s hot, add the oil and the bacon and the onions. Saute until the bacon begins to crisp and the onions turn translucent, about 10 minutes.
- Add the chicken and cook through, about 10 more minutes. Then add the mushrooms and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
- Grease a casserole dish. Place the contents of the skillet in the baking dish, then ladle the butternut squash puree evenly over the top. Halve the biscuits and place them in an even layer over the top.
- Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until the biscuits are cooked through and golden. Remove and let stand for 10 minutes before servings.
When I saw this recipe in my inbox the other day, I remembered how crazygood this stuff is and became sad that I haven’t made it in years.
Mainly because there’s just no excuse for it. The ingredient list is small and it stars two of my favorite quintessential Southern veggies: tomatoes and Vidalias. By the by, were you aware that in order to be considered “true Vidalias,” the onions must be grown in very specific parts of Georgia as defined by law? ‘Cuz I wasn’t. That’s some federally official agriculture, my man.
Anyway, good tomato pie is sweet and savory, and the basil helps to satisfy your Italian cravings while staying well below the Mason Dixon. (There’s also a full cup of mayo in here y’all, clearly it still skews “South.”) The whole process is slice, layer, slather and bake, and as I’ve heard said many times down South, ain’t nothing wrong with that.
1 pie crust
1-2 Vidalia onions, thinly sliced
fresh basil (a few handfuls torn)
1 cup mayo
1 cup mozzarella
1 cup cheddar
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Prick pie crust with fork and cook according to package directions.
- Boil and peel tomatoes. Slice and let drain for a little while.
- Saute onions in oil.
- Layer tomatoes, onions, and basil until you run out.
- Mix mayo and cheeses and top tomatoes and onions with it.
- Cook for about 30 minutes. (It may take a little longer, so just look for browned crust and bubbly cheese.)
The first official day of fall has come and gone, and that means it’s legitimately time for soup again! And I no longer have to put up with judgmental looks when I ask what the soup of the day while sitting on a patio in July.
As it is now October, I’ve clearly already made chili (cheese dogs) in celebration of the season, but this week I decided to turn my attention to things more healthy.
This recipe is similar to Mama Dunny’s oft-praised Veggie Beef Soup, and it is certainly not lacking in the ingredient department. Luckily most of these ingredients can be bought already prepped, so you get to stand and stir and taste and season without having to chop ’til your fingers fall off.
And believe it or not, the addition of Zing Zang here is not just a reflection of my inability to wait until Saturday morning to make myself a bloody. It actually adds great flavor and seasoning. Give it a slurp and see what I mean.
2 boxes beef broth
1 beef brisket (2.5 lbs or so), cut into 8 pieces
1 large can tomato sauce
2 cups Zing Zang Bloody Mary Mix
1 package mushrooms, sliced
2 carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 potato, chopped (or parsnip if you’re feeling experimental)
2 cups cabbage, chopped (crunchy goodness)
1 bag frozen peas, carrots, corn, and lima & green beans
1 can diced tomatoes + juice (any non-Rotel variety)
1.5 cups mini farfalle pasta
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
hot sauce & Tony’s & Cavender’s to taste (natch)
- Place brisket in large dutch oven. Cover with beef broth, tomato sauce, and Zing Zang. Add spices.
- Bring to boil and reduce to simmer. Cook on low for at least 3 hours (the longer and lower the better, but you just have to cook it until the brisket starts to pull apart).
- Once the brisket is tender, remove it from the broth and let cool. Pull apart.
- Turn the broth up to a boil and add the veggies. [Start with carrots and potatoes (which will take longer) and work your way down to things that cook quickly like mushrooms. ] Turn down to a simmer.
- Add beef and uncooked pasta. Simmer until pasta is cooked through. Add more broth if necessary.*
- TASTE and SEASON. This is a big ole mess ‘o soup (because why would make any other amount?), and that will require a LOT of seasoning. My measurements are always estimates, so use your own judgment. Nothing is more disappointing than bland broth.
- Serve with Saltines. Because some things Grandma did you cannot argue with.
*Do not be afraid to add more broth (and subsequently more seasoning) as you go along. All these veggies will suck up that moisture, and the broth is so delish that you’ll want more of it.