Aight, Imma be straight wichu: this has been in my backlog for months. And it’s not because I don’t think it’s good.
I actually can’t remember anything The Chef has cooked for me that wasn’t awesome… barring one incident with some enchiladas. And that was a disaster mostly because I was hopping around the kitchen on one leg with a large knife and we were too tired to be cooking anything more than frozen chicken nuggets. (And we actually forgot to turn the oven on when we tried to cook those, so that kind of indicates what level we were on that day.)
Anyway, I’ve been less than anxious to post this only because it’s not in my comfort zone, meaning it is not soup or pasta or a dip made with cream cheese.
But you know what? That’s exactly why it needs posting. This dish actually has some nutritional value and is pretty tasty when you sauce it up all Asian-like. And it’s downright different. So Free Yo Mind, y’all. The rest will follow.
6 oz baby bok choy, cleaned
2 tsp vegetable oil
2 tsp garlic. minced
1 tsp ginger, minced
2 tbsp scallions, thinly sliced
1 /2 tsp sesame oil
salt and pepper to taste
- Blanch and shock the bok choy.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a saute pan. Sweat the ginger, scallions, and garlic until tender.
- Add bok choy. Season with salt, pepper, and sesame oil.
We cooked this on one of our last dinner parties at our apartment in NYC. It was amazing. We made a huge pot of it, and I am pretty sure there were no leftovers. People were stuffing their face and going for third helpings. Chef John and I love “My New Orleans” cookbook. Other then the obvious fact that his recipe’s are amazing, I also love this cookbook because John Besh describes the cooking process and why it is important to do certain things while you are cooking. -ts
Chef John says: If you don’t have John Besh’s book, “My New Orleans,” than you need to have your head examined, go buy it. In my opinion, he’s easily one of the most talented and innovative chefs out there and best of all he likes to use pork… a lot. I’m trying to eat my way through his book at the moment but wanted to share with you his Jambalaya recipe. Prior to this, I’ve never tried to make it on my own and I was really surprised by how easy it was. This is one of my favorite comfort foods and provides a great base for a long night out.
2 pounds bacon, diced
3 pounds andouille sausage, diced
1/2 cup lard (OPTIONAL- we did not use bc there is enough pork fat)
2 pounds fresh pork sausage, removed from casings
8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, roughly cut into 1-inch pieces
Freshly ground black pepper
6 large onions, diced
4 bell peppers, seeded and diced
10 stalks celery, diced
12 cloves garlic, minced
9 cups converted Louisiana white rice
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 dried bay leaves
3 tablespoons pimention de la Vera or smoked paprika
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon celery salt
6 cups canned crushed tomatoes
6 cups chicken stock
5 pounds Louisiana white shrimp or other wild American shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 bunches green onions, chopped
- First, you’ll need to heat a very large pot 3-5 gallons) over high heat until it is hot, then reduce the heat to moderate. This will allow the heat to be uniform all over, preventing those little hot spots that are likely to burn.
- Render the bacon with the sausages and the lard in the hot pot, stirring slowly with a long wooden spoon or a spade. While the pork is rendering, go ahead and season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the pot, stirring, and cook until the chicken becomes golden brown, about 5 minutes.
- After the chicken as browned, add the onions to the pot and all them to caramelize, about 15 minutes. Add the bell peppers, celery, and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes. Continue stirring from time to time so that everything in the pot cooks evenly.
- Next add the rice, thyme, bay leaves, pimention, cayenne, 2 tablespoons salt, 1 tablespoons black pepper, and the celery salt to the pot and cook, stirring often for 3 minutes.
- Increase the heat to high and add the tomatoes and chicken stock to the pot, Bring the stock to a boil. Reduce the heat do medium low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
- While the rice is cooking in the covered pot, season the shrimp with salt and pepper and save them, along with the green onions, to be added at the last minutes.
- After the rice as simmered for 15 minutes, go ahead and remove the lid from the pot and fold int he shrimp and green onions. Turn off the heat and let everything continue to to cook in the hot covered pot for an additional 10 minutes. Remove the lid, fluff the jambalaya and serve.
It’s Monday, and due to the fact that I spent the better part of my Sunday sitting in traffic on I-40, all I want to do today is watch Netflix and play on Facebook as I normally would on Sunday. Unfortunately I have this stupid job thingy that’s totally ruining my plans.
So I’m giving my brain a break and posting something simple and fresh that I wish I’d had for lunch instead of the cold chicken fingers I actually ate. The Chef served this vinaigrette over roasted shrooms and carrots, and I must say between this and the baby carrot recipe, he’s actively proving that they aren’t just lame ranch-covered OM-related snacks from my childhood.
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup canola oil
1/4 sesame oil
1 bunch of scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup of toasted sesame seeds
- Whisk together.
- Dress your veggies.
The Chef says this also works well as a marinade for lamb or beef. I cannot, however, vouch for lamb yet as that is one of the foods he has yet to make for me in an attempt to prove that it doesn’t, in fact, taste like dirt and barnyard like I think it does. I’ll keep you posted on that one.
This is a super simple breakfast potato recipe. I don’t really have measurements because this is all by taste and what I have in the fridge or pantry. It takes no time at all, incredibly easy and is the perfect hangover cure. I highly recommend topping with an egg over easy and using lots of hot sauce. – ts
5-6 small potatoes (any potatoes will do)
1 small red bell pepper chopped
½ large yellow onion chopped
seasoning (whatever you have on hand) options:
- fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary
- dried oregano (make sure to squish dried oregano between your fingers to release the seasonings before using)
- chili powder
1-2 scallions chopped green and white parts
2 cloves garlic minced
salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste
- Boil water, and then boil potatoes for about 8-10 minutes or until tender
- Drain and let cool while you chop the bell pepper, onions, and garlic
- Heat pan with olive oil, and then add garlic. Let cook about 45 seconds or 1 minute, until fragrant. Add peppers and onions and sauté for a few minutes. Season the veggies with salt and pepper.
- While peppers and onions cook, slice potatoes up to about ½ inch slices. Add potatoes to pan along with all seasonings. Cook for about 20 minutes. Top with fresh scallions. Serve hot with hot sauce and fried egg over easy.
This recipe uses a scotch bonnet, and, if you think about the name of that pepper literally (i.e. a small older Scottish woman dressed like Miss Muffet), I think we can all agree it’s cute as crap. Also, reading the list of spices literally made my mouth water, so it’s probably good as crap too.
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 scallions, chopped
1 scotch bonnet, cut in half
2 tbsp chopped thyme
2 tsp ground allspice
11/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 ground cloves
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/4 cup dark rum
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup vegetable oil
- Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree into a smooth, thick paste.
- Use on pork, chicken, or seafood. It will last for about 3 days. (The rub, that is, not the food. If your food lasts for 3 days you are my grandmother and need to eat more quickly.)
The Chef’s Spicy Southwestern Slaw looks amazing, and I will need to try it out. I thought I would offer up another non mayo slathered alternative to slaw as well. Mine is more vinegar based, and the key ingredient being Rice Wine Vinegar. You should be able to find that at any grocery, not just your local ethnic pet store. All of this is to taste, and there are a ton of optional ingredients to add. I use this as a side to Chef John’s pulled pork. Recipe coming soon! -ts
Red cabbage shredded
Package of green shredded cabbage w/carrots
Green onion chopped
dab of Mayo
dash of sugar
1 juice of a lemon or lime
Rice Wine Vinegar
less then a handful of chopped cilantro
Cayenne pepper (optional)
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
- Whisk together in a bowl mayo, sugar, lemon or lime, salt, pepper and cayenne (if using), & vinegar together.
- Pour dressing over cabbage, onion and cilantro and toss. Taste for additional seasoning. Allow to marinate for at least an hour.
– chopped jalapeno
– toasted sesame seeds
– almond slivers
– sesame oil
– finely julienned cucumber
Because I always jump when Harmon asks me to, here is a very good, very basic chicken salad recipe. This is the one that Emily thought was so good she ate it out of the cooler the morning after Pat Benatar… after all the ice had melted. It’s 90+ degrees in Memphis in July if you’ll recall, so it must have been pretty darn good for her to risk her health and self-respect just to have a second helping.
4 cups shredded chicken* (rotisserie from the grocery works great for this)
1 stalk celery, sliced very thin
4 green onions, sliced very thin
1.5 tsp fresh tarragon or dill, finely chopped
2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
1 cup mayo (gotta be Duke’s!)
2 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tsp kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
- Toss together chicken, celery, green onions, and herbs.
- In another bowl, whisk together mayo, lemon juice, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Add to the chicken and mix until well-combined.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. This is even better the day after served on freshly-baked rolls with lettuce and tomato. Just ask Emily.
*You’ll need to cook the chicken before shredding it. Beth and Cat learned that the hard way, right A Dub?
After vacation comes starvation! Sorry, that was real nerdy. However, it is needed. After a week of major boozing and eating, I could use some health. Last night I was craving greens and lots of it. This is a standard recipe for tabbouleh, and it is incredibly easy. The longer everything has to soak in the sauce the better, but it is fine to make and eat right away. Everything is to taste. I prefer loads of parsley and little bulgar wheat (the authentic Lebanese way) and very lemon-y. Feel free to use more or less of all ingredients. -ts
¼ cup bulgar cracked wheat (fine)- you may want more
2 roma tomatoes chopped
2 bunches flat leaf parsley chopped
Pinch of chopped fresh mint
Bunch of scallions chopped
Lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
Olive oil (about ¼ cup)
Salt & pepper
iceberg or romaine lettuce leaves separated and cleaned
- Prepare bulgar wheat as instructed on package and set aside. Here is a common way to prepare it: Place the bulgur in a bowl, and cover with water by 1/2 inch. Soak for 20 minutes, until slightly softened. Drain through a cheesecloth-lined strainer or sieve, and press the bulgur against the strainer to squeeze out excess water.
- Transfer bulgar to a large bowl, and toss with the lemon juice, parsley, mint, tomatoes, scallions and salt. Leave at room temperature or in the refrigerator for two to three hours (optional I eat it right away!) so that the bulgur can continue to absorb liquid.
- Add the olive oil, toss together, taste and adjust seasonings. Serve with lettuce leaves; eat like a lettuce wrap.
Continuing chicken week…my curry chicken salad recipe is all by taste, but here are a few guidelines and steps. Feel free to change up the measurements. I roast a whole chicken for this recipe. I have made this on several occasions, and every time I get rave reviews. They are served in mini croissants or with crackers as a dip. I tend to have this on hand when guests stay over as a snack . -ts
1 roasted whole chicken (or you can cook 3 chicken breasts skin on, bone in)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups mayo (to taste)
1/3 cup dry white wine (to taste)
curry powder (to taste) generous amount
1 cup medium-diced celery (2 large stalks)
1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions) ½+ lemon juice
- Remove cooked chicken meat from the bones, discard the skin, and shred chicken. I just use my hands.
- For the dressing, combine the mayonnaise, curry powder, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper in a bowl and whisk together.
- Combine the chicken with enough dressing to moisten well. Add wine for moisture. I say add no matter what! Add the celery, scallions, and mix well. Refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Combine with nuts before serving.