Tag Archives: jalapeno

Crawfish Cornbread Stuffing

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
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

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Filed under Bread, Cajun food, Comfort food, Meat, Party food, Shellfish, Side dishes, Southern food, Special Occasion, Thanksgiving

Carol’s Corn Chowder with Jalapeno Parsley Puree

thenakedbeet.com

Well in case you haven’t heard, Carol is famous. That’s right, young Carol was featured in the Times Free Press a few week’s ago for offering her soup expertise, and clearly we could not be more proud.

This is a recipe Carol adapted from Epicurious.com, and I can personally attest it is delish.

The really fun part here is the jalapeno parsley puree. It’s bright (in taste and in the bowl) and it gives the creamy corn chowder a wonderful kick.

This would be a perfect dish for a day like today in which everyone is feeling gray, wet and pretty darn depressed that the long Thanksgiving weekend is over.

Except me. Because I’m about to go see Twilight. By myself. And no, I could not be happier, so don’t you cry for me, Nummy! Now get your soup on.

Puree:
5 fresh jalapeño chilies
1⁄4 cup olive oil
11⁄2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp water
1-2 garlic cloves, minced (depending on how much you like garlic)
1 cup packed fresh parsley leaves
Salt, to taste

Chowder:
1 onion, chopped fine
2 ribs of celery, chopped fine
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 cups chicken broth
21⁄2 cups water
11⁄2 lbs boiling potatoes, peeled and cut into 3⁄8-inch cubes
4 cups fresh corn kernels including the pulp scraped from the cobs (organic frozen mixture of white and yellow corn works just as well)
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, minced (very important; adds a great finishing touch to the soup)

  1. For the puree:
    1. Broil the jalapeños on the rack of a broiler pan under a preheated broiler about 2 inches from the heat, turning them about every 7 minutes, for 20-30 minutes or until the skins are blistered and charred.
    2. Transfer the jalapeños to a zipper-lock bag and let them stand, covered tightly, until they are cool enough to handle.
    3. Peel the jalapeños, cut off the tops and discard all but 1 teaspoon of the seeds.
    4. In a blender, puree the jalapeños and reserved seeds with olive oil, lime juice, water, garlic, parsley and salt. The puree may be made 3 days in advance and kept covered and chilled.
  2. For the chowder:
    1. Cook onion and celery in vegetable oil over moderate heat, stirring, until the celery is softened.
    2. Add broth, water and potatoes; simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in corn and thyme; simmer for 5 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
    3. To thicken, purée in blender 2 or more cups of the chowder, depending on the consistency you prefer your soups, and return to pot.
  3. Serve the chowder with a small dollop of the jalapeño and parsley puree swirled into it. Add salt and pepper to taste as well. For added crunch, sprinkle with tortilla chips.

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Filed under Soups, Veggies

Barrett’s Black Bean Cakes

The Chef sent me this recipe months ago, and it stalled out in my Inbox because black beans – or beans of any kind, really – often bore the crap out of me.

mensfitness.com

But the more I started looking at it, the more intrigued I became. The Mexican seasonings, the chorizo, and the suggestion that you serve it alongside quail – arguably the most adorable and delectable of tiny game birds – finally changed my mind.

The Chef also mentioned this is one of his favorite recipes from the CIA Cookbook, and whether that means “Central Intelligence Agency” or “Culinary Institute of America” to you, it’s pretty badass either way.

1 lb dried black beans
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup chorizo sausage
2/3 cup yellow onion, diced medium
2 tbsp garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup cornmeal

  1. Soak bean overnight in enough cold water to cover them by 3 inches.
  2. Drain beans, place in a pot, and add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until beans are tender, about 45 minutes. Drain.
  3. Cook the chorizo over medium heat in a saute pan until the fat is rendered and the chorizo is slightly crispy.  Add onions, garlic and jalapeno, and saute until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Add the cumin and chili powder and saute until fragrant. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool.
  5. Combine beans, chorizo mixture, egg, cilantro, lime juice and salt.  Mix well, mashing some of the beans to help keep the cake together.
  6. Form the mixture into 16 cakes, about 2 inches in diameter and 1/2 inch thick. Dust the cakes lightly with cornmeal.
  7. Preheat nonstick skillet to medium heat. Cook the cakes until heat through, about 4 to 6 minutes.  The Chef says you’re gonna have to work in batches here, so be prepared to move quickly.

Serve these immediately (because these suckers are best hot), preferably with grilled quail and Coffee BBQ Sauce.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Mexican food, Side dishes

Green Tomato Salsa

As it turns out,  it IS easy being green. And nothing proves that more than this funky take on a summer classic. Plus, this is one time in life where impatience serves you well because you don’t even have to wait until the tomatoes are ripe. So get in there early. And often.

6 green tomatoes, diced medium
1 red bell pepper, diced small
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1/2 red onion, diced small
2 garlic cloves, minced
juice of 3-4 limes
salt to taste
3 green onions, thinly sliced
handful of cilantro, chopped

  1. Mix all ingredients.
  2. Let sit for at least 2 hours.
  3. Serve with chips. Preferably from Las Delicias.

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Filed under Appetizers, Dips, Mexican food, Toppings, Veggies

Pan Roasted Red Snapper with Chile Citrus Vinaigrette

Aside from tuna, I know very little about fish. I know that I will order it if it’s served over mashed potatoes or comes covered in butter. Other than that, I am completely unprepared to make any educated decisions.

For example, I thought I knew what red snapper was, and I was pretty sure I liked it. I realized, however, that I was very confused when The Chef brought it out and it wasn’t red. The scales are, of course, but the actual meat is white.

(For those of you who knew that, enjoy a good laugh at my expense. I watch 5 hours of the Food Network a day and am still apparently Simple Jack when it comes to seafood.)

Anyway, I like most varieties of firm, white fish, and this is my new favorite. And not just because I braved the cold, rainy morning to get it from Paradise Seafood at the Memphis Farmers Market (I had to walk all the way across the street, y’all). Pan searing is super easy, and this vinaigrette is so fresh and tangy it will make you want to eat it straight out of the bowl.

Furthermore, the dude who own Paradise is crazy nice (I’ve since learned his name is Don), and he’ll let you pick our your own fillet for a very reasonable price. Plus he named his business after Jimmy Buffett’s “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” and that just spells good people.

Picture borrowed from Richard Swiecki Food Photography because my camera has the flu.

Fish:
2-3 red snapper fillets
flour
splash of white wine
salt and pepper to taste

Vinaigrette:
juice of 1 lime
juice of 1 lemon
juice of 1 orange
1 tsp of sugar
salt to taste
1/2 cup of olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. To make the vinaigrette:
    1. Combine all ingredients except oil.
    2. Whisk in oil slowly until emulsified.
  3. To make the fish:
    1. Heat oil in saute pan on medium high heat. Salt and pepper fish and dredge in flour (flesh side up, only dredging one side).
    2. Place fish flesh side down in pan and saute until golden brown.
    3. Turn fish and add wine. Then place in oven for 3-4 minutes.
    4. Remove and top with Chili Citrus Vinaigrette. Lots of it. Trust me, you’ll want it.

Sidenote: We also had some head-on shrimp from Paradise that were so good they tasted like little lobsters. Recipe coming soon.

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Filed under Fish, Fruit, Main Course, Marinades, Salad dressings, Sauces, Toppings

Roasted Corn & Avocado Salsa ~ Cinco de Mayo 2K11

Hola mi amigos! (Is that right? I took French for 4 years and can’t even speak that, so please pardon my French and my Spanish.)

It is that ever-blessed time of the year in which the sun shines, the tequila flows and corporate Americans everywhere use Mexican culture as an excuse to drink margaritas on a patio at noon on a work day. That’s right chicas – Manana esta Cinco De Mayo!

In keeping with that grand tradition of poaching holidays simply for celebration’s sake, we present to you an Americanized version of Mexico’s signature dip: la salsa! I made this last night because I was craving corn and needed a veggie fix after the weekend (but obviously didn’t want anything so healthy it couldn’t be served atop Fritos).

This was bright, and summery and addictive, and it would make a great base if you’re planning on getting your Margarita on tomorrow. Just sayin… safety first, y’all. ¡Buen apetito! (Oooh, I have always wanted to use that upside down exclamation point thingy, so thanks Google!)

——————–
2 ears corn
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can Mexican Rotel + juice
juice from 1 lime
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1 heaping tbsp taco sauce
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Preheat the oven to 415.
  2. Open up the corn and add a little olive oil and close up. Roast in their husks for 20 minutes or until tender. Remove and allow to cool.
  3. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and place in the fridge to chill while the corn cools.
  4. Cut the kernels off of each ear of corn (I like to do this while the “butt” end of the corn is in the bottom of a deep mixing bowl so the kernels don’t ‘splode everywhere in the kitchen – they can be some slippery little suckers), and then add corn to the veggie mixture.
  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper and chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Serve with Fritos. Ole!

This would also be a good topping for grilled anything, so feel free to make some game-time grilling adjustments as needed.

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Filed under Appetizers, Dips, Mexican food, Party food, Sauces, Southwestern food, Toppings, Veggies

Black Bean Soup with Chipotle Cream

I already have 3 problems with this post: 1) I hate beans; 2) It’s officially 71 degrees outside and therefore way too conventionally “warm” to post a soup recipe; and 3) Every idiot I’ve run across recently cannot pronounce the word “Chipotle.” Let’s take these one by one, shall we?

First of all, I think beans are kind of pointless. Refry them and cover them in cheese and maybe we can talk, but for the most-part, I’ll pass.

That is, AHEM, until I had this soup. The Chef brought this home from work for me months ago, and I don’t know if it was my intense love of getting anything for free or the Chipotle Cream on top, but it was GREAT. As for my second point, I have pointed out that soup knows no season on several occasions, so you can take it down the street to another blog if you don’t like it.

And finally, the word is pronounced “Chi-poht-lay.” Yeah, I’m looking at you, Paula Deen, I love your wacky behind more than anyone, but “Chi-POLT-ay” just “ain’t rite,” to use your vernacular. You’re on the Food Network for goodness’ sakes. Get it together girl.

Black Bean Soup:
4 cups of dry black beans
2 yellow onions, diced
1 poblano pepper. diced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
6 quarts of water
salt and black pepper to taste

  1. Rinse black beans in cold water.
  2. In a large pot, cook onions and peppers in olive oil until they become soft. Add the chili powder and cumin and stir until the onions are well coated.
  3. Add the beans and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for about an hour and a half. (While this is cooking, make the Chipotle Cream.)
  4. Puree beans in their liquid until smooth. Thin down with additional water, if necessary.
  5. Season to taste and top each bowl of soup with Chipotle Cream.

Chipotle Cream:
4 Chipotles in Adobo sauce
1/2 cup of sour cream
1/3 cup of mayo
juice of one lime
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp of cilantro

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender or processor and puree until smooth. (I like to refrigerate this for the cold-hot dynamic you get when you top the soup with it, but it’s your prerogative lady, so do what you will.)

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Filed under Appetizers, Mexican food, Soups, Southwestern food, Toppings