Jul 282011

This is to complete my post from Monday. This sauce is great with meats and fish.

2 tablespoons Dried Tarragon

¾ cup Red Wine Vinegar

2 tablespoons Shallots minced

2 Egg Yolks

1 Whole Egg

2 Sticks (1/2 lb) Margarine

1 Stick (1/4lb) Butter

1 ½ teaspoon Lemon Juice

½ teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar

½ teaspoon Ground White Pepper

¼ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

In a heavy skillet over medium heat, sauté tarragon, red wine vinegar and shallots for 10-15 minutes, or until the mixture becomes paste-like and remove from heat. Melt margarine and butter over medium fire. Bring to a boil, remove from fire and allow to cool. In a blender, blend egg yolks, egg, vinegar, cayenne, white pepper, and lemon juice. With blender on, pour melted margarine/butter slowly into other ingredients. Blend to thicken. Add the tarragon mixture and blend well.


Jul 252011

This is the ultimate French fry. There are a few stories as to how they were invented. A king who loved French fries had asked for his dinner to be delayed 30 minutes. The chef had already started cooking the potatoes so he pulled them out of the oil and let them drain. When the king was ready to eat, the chef put them back into the oil and they puffed up. Pomme Souffle became the king’s favorite dish.

You need to cook the potatoes twice, once at 325 degrees and once in 375 degrees. You need to cut the potatoes in slices ¼ to3/8 inch thick. Soak the sliced potatoes in ice water for at least 25 minutes. Drain and dry them thoroughly. You want to cook the potatoes the first time, 325 degrees, for 6-7 minutes occasionally moving the potatoes around. Drain them on paper towels until they begin to soften. At this point, you can cook them the second time, 375 degrees, or hold them at room temperature for several hours until service. Serve these with Béarnaise sauce for dipping. Check back Thursday for recipe.


Jul 212011

This is one of my wife’s favorite appetizers. With crabs being in season, this is a great way to use crabmeat. Most people like to use lump crabmeat in every dish. While this adds to the eye appeal of a dish, you don’t get as much crab flavor than when you use claw meat. Claw meat is dark and stringy. However, it has the most crab flavor. It is the perfect crabmeat for stuffed mushrooms.

1 pound Button Mushrooms large

6 tablespoons Butter divided

Non-Stick Butter Spray

¼ cup Green Onions minced

¼ cup Red Bell Peppers minced

8 ounces Claw Crabmeat

1 cup Italian Bread Crumbs

½ teaspoon Creole Seasoning Blend

2 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese grated

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Wash and trim the end of the stem of the mushrooms. Pop the remaining stem out. Chop the stems and set aside. Spray an 8×8 inch baking pan with butter spray. Layer the mushrooms in the pan. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter and brush over the mushrooms. Melt the remaining butter in a medium skillet. Add the reserved mushroom stems, green onions and red bell pepper, cooking them until they are tender. Combine the cooked ingredients with the crabmeat, breadcrumbs, garlic, and Creole seasoning. Fill each mushroom and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until hot and mushroom caps are tender.


Jul 182011

Crème Brulee is translated burnt cream. The burnt aspect is the sugar that is caramelized on the top of the custard. I always enjoy making this dessert because it allows me to use my little torch. You can find them in cooking stores for around 20 dollars. You can also put them under the broiler for a minute if you don’t have a torch. The contrast between the warm sugar shell and the smooth and creamy custard makes for a perfect dessert.

2 cups Heavy Cream

5 Egg Yolks

½ cup Sugar

1 tablespoon Vanilla Extract

½ cup or more of Light Brown Sugar

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Whisk the cream, egg yolks, sugar and vanilla together in a medium bowl. Mix it up until it gets creamy. Pour this mixture into 4 ramekins. Place the ramekins in a baking pan. Fill the baking pan with hot water, halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Put the pan in the oven and cook for 45 minutes to an hour. After 45 minutes, check every 10 minutes. They are done when you can stick a knife in the center of one and it comes out clean. Remove the ramekins from the pan and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Put them in the refrigerator overnight. Before serving, sprinkle a thin layer of brown sugar. Make sure it is a Thin layer; also make sure that the entire surface of the custard is covered. Caramelize the sugar with a torch or the broiler. Serve immediately.


Jul 142011

Here is another dish to take advantage of Crab Season. This dish is a delightful way to showcase lump crabmeat. It can be served as a casserole or in individual portion dishes. It is also an easy dish to experiment with. You can change up the cheeses to get a different flavor.

2 Egg Yolks

12 ounces Heavy Cream

½ stick Butter (4 ounces)

1 large Onion minced

3 cloves Garlic minced

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon White pepper

1 tablespoon Seafood seasoning blend

¼ cup Flour

½ cup Shredded Mild Cheddar Cheese

½ cup Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

1 pound Lump Crabmeat, picked through for shells

1 cup Seasoned Bread Crumbs

1 cup Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly grease a 9×9 inch-baking pan. In a bowl, whip together egg yolks and heavy cream. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté onions and garlic about 3 minutes. Season with salt, white pepper and the seafood seasoning Blend. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until very tender. Mix the flour into the saucepan, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring continuously. Mix in egg yolk mixture. Stir in the mild Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses until melted. Remove from heat and fold in crabmeat. Transfer the mixture to the prepared Baking dish. Top with breadcrumbs and sharp Cheddar cheese. Bake 20 minutes until bubbling lightly.


Jul 112011

The Cookbook is finished. It just needs a little polish. As I finished, I was wondering about dinner. What was I going to cook? Chicken Oregano was my selection. I could not remember the last time I has it. It is one of my mother’s recipes. When I took the first bite, I felt like I was in New Orleans sitting at my mother’s table. So, I thought I would share this delicious memory with you.

1 3-4 pound Broiler-Fryer quartered

2 tablespoons Fresh Parsley chopped

2 teaspoons Fresh Oregano chopped

1½ teaspoons Salt

½ cup Lemon Juice

1 clove Garlic chopped

1/3 cup Olive Oil

Dash Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients, brush on the chicken and bake for 1½ hours.


Jul 072011

Stuffed crabs have been pushed on to the endangered recipe list by crab cakes. I myself am as guilty as the rest. Stuffed crab was a common fixture on fried seafood platters around the Gulf Coast. But since crab cakes have less of a bread component, the stuffed crab has almost 50% breading, crab cakes are considered gourmet. The stuffed crab is still a great dish. My Aunt Shirley would make dozens of them for a local festival.  I also like using claw meat in stuffed crabs. It gives you a stronger crab flavor.

1 pound Claw Crabmeat picked through for shells

1 stick butter

½ cup Onion minced

½ cup Celery minced

¼ cup Green Onions, sliced

¼ cup Fresh Parsley chopped

1½ cups Seasoned Bread Crumbs

½ teaspoon Seafood Seasoning Blend

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt butter in medium sauté pan over medium heat. Add onion, celery, green onions, and parsley and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.  Add crabmeat and remove from heat. Add breadcrumbs and seafood season and mix well. You can either stuff them in real crab shells, individual serving dishes, or a 9×9-buttered pan. Bake them for 10 to 15 minutes.

Jul 052011

Here is one for all the soft shell crab lovers out there. This dish was one of my favorites from my first place of employment, the now closed 5 star LeRuth’s in Gretna. You can find crabmeat on top of a lot of different things in New Orleans. But to put Jumbo Lump Crabmeat on a fried Soft Shell Crab was pure genius.

How to select and clean Soft Shell Crabs

When buying soft-shell crabs, live ones are the best but they’re not always easy to find. To select the tastiest, use your nose. When fresh, they smell clean and astringent, like sea mist―a fitting aroma for a delicacy that both captures the romance of the sea and the allure of a full moon in spring.

1. To clean soft-shell crabs, hold the crab in one hand, and using a pair of kitchen shears, cut off the front of the crab, about 1/2 inch behind the eyes and mouth. Squeeze out the contents of the sack located directly behind the cut you just made.

2. Lift one pointed end of the crab’s outer shell; remove and discard the gills. Repeat on the other side.

3. Turn the crab over and snip off the small flap known as the apron. Rinse the entire crab well and pat dry. Once cleaned, crabs should be cooked or stored immediately.

4 Soft Shell Crabs

Egg Wash

Seafood Breading

Meuniere sauce

1 pound Lump Crabmeat, picked through to remove loose shells.

Fresh Parsley chopped

Preheat deep fryer to 350 degrees.  Make Meuniere sauce and add the crabmeat. Cook for 2 minutes then keep warm. Dip cleaned crabs in egg wash, shaking off excess. Dredge the crabs in seafood breading, shaking off excess. Fry the crabs for 3-5 minutes or until done, when they are floating to the surface of the oil in the fryer. Drain on paper towels. Top each crab with ¼ of the crabmeat mixture. Sprinkle parsley on top and serve.