Dec 292011

One year ago today, I started my blog. Here is that first post:

Welcome to my Blog. At least once a week, I will post a new recipe from my

collection.  I hope one day to publish a cookbook.  I have gladly shared my

recipes with all who have asked for them. My first recipe will be posted

on Jan. 1, 2011.  I hope to share my love of cooking with all who wish

to join in.  I encourage request as well as suggestions to make this blog

better for all to enjoy. 

Little did I know what 2011 had in store for me. After a few months of posting

suggested recipes, I worked up the courage to start shopping for a publisher for

my cookbook. In late March, I send a letter to Pelican Publishing in Gretna, La. to

see if they were interested in my book. On April 4th, they expressed interest. We

sent a few letters back and forth sharing information.  On April 26th, they asked

me to send an outline and the first three chapters of the book.  Thinking that my

book was on its way to publication, I started getting excited. My association with

Pelican Publishing was not meant to be. On June 8th, I received a rejection letter

from my first choice of publishers. They did not wish to pursue my book. So on

June 8th, I took to the internet to research other publishers. On June 9th, I

submitted my first three chapters to Publish America. On June 16th, Publish

America accepted my book and I signed their contract.  This started what would

be one of the best half year’s of my life. On June 20th, I moved my blog to my

website,  While finishing up my book, I continued to

update my blog with my soon to be published recipes. The official release date of  

my cookbook, You can’t keep New Orleans out of the cook, was August 26th.  I

cannot thank enough my wife Peggy, for her editing of the book, my niece Amber

McCann, for designing my heart and fleur de lis logo, and Bill Lottner, for taking

the photo that appears on the back cover of my book.  I had the pleasure of being

interviewed on WGSO radio by a true friend, Jeff Crouere on October 28th. The

next day, I had my first book signing at Common Grounds in Gretna, La. I can’t

describe my feelings on that day. I had family and friends come out to help me

celebrate my accomplishment. On November 25th, I was back in New Orleans to

realize my dream of seeing my cookbook on the shelf in a book store. It was with

great pride that I had my picture taken in Barnes and Noble in Harvey, La.

with my cookbook on the same shelves as Emeril, Paul Prudhomme, and all of

the great restaurant cookbooks. The next day, I had my first book store signing

at Barnes and Noble. It was great to have people I have not seen in years coming

in to have me sign my book. 

As the year comes to an end, I will now try to make 2012 an even better year.

I will be doing more book signings. I will also start posting videos on my website,

demonstrating recipes. If you have any favorites let me know.

 I can’t wait for next year.



Dec 262011

Alyson is my Godchild. My sweet little girl has grown up into a

beautiful mother of two. I have a picture of her when she was young.

She is wearing a top that has the Strawberry Shortcake doll on it. Since

she has grownup, I thought that a fancier dessert made of strawberries

would be more appropriate.

½ pound Cream Cheese at room temperature

2½ tablespoons Sour Cream

5 tablespoons Sugar divided

1½ teaspoons Vanilla

8 Crepes

1½ teaspoon Butter

2½ cups Fresh Strawberries cleaned and sliced

½ teaspoon Apple Juice

2 tablespoons Cherry Liqueur

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, sour cream,

2 tablespoons of the sugar, and vanilla. Beat the mixture until smooth.

Place 3 tablespoons of the mixture on one end of the crepe. Roll the

crepe, and then refrigerate them while preparing the topping. Place

the butter and the remaining sugar in a large saucepan. Oven medium

heat, cook for several minutes, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Add

the strawberries and apple juice. Over high heat, bring the mixture to

a boil and then reduce heat to medium and cook for 10-12 minutes

or until the mixture thickens. Add the cherry liqueur and

flame the mixture. To serve, place 2 crepes on each plate and spoon about ¾ cup

of the topping over the crepes.

Crepe Batter

1¾ cups Flour

1 tablespoon Sugar

2 cups Milk

1 Egg

1/3 cup Canola Oil

5 tablespoons Butter melted plus extra for pan.

Place the flour and sugar in a medium-mixing bowl. Slowly whisk

in the milk, egg, oil, and butter. Heat a nonstick pan or crepe pan over

moderate heat. Pour ¼ cup of the crepe batter into the center of the

hot pan and tilt it in all directions. The batter should coat the pan in a

light covering. After about 30 seconds, the bottom side of the crepe

should be lightly browned and the crepe should be ready to be

flipped. Shake the pan in order to release the crepe, and then turn it by using

a spatula. Cook the crepe for an additional 15-20 seconds and then

remove it from the pan.




Dec 222011

I could not think of a perfect dish to end my Feast of the Seven Fishes.

This is the dish that started the Cajun food craze in America. Paul

Prudhomme invented this dish when he opened his own restaurant.

Having developed the opening menu for Mr. B’s Bistro, he wanted to

have a dish like their wood grilled redfish. Since he did not want to

bring in a wood grill, he developed a blackening spice blend, coated

a redfish fillet and cooked it in a very hot cast iron skillet. This dish

became so popular around the country that a ban had been placed on

fishing redfish. Now that the redfish population has become plentiful

again, redfish is easier to find.

This dish is best cooked outdoors due to the smoke that the cooking

process produces.


6 8oz Redfish Fillets

1 ½ sticks of melted Butter

Blackening Seasoning


Heat a cast iron skillet over very high heat beyond smoking stage.

You will see white ash in the skillet bottom at least 10 minutes. The

skillet can’t get too hot for this dish.

Dip each fillet in the melted butter so that both sides are well

coated. Sprinkle a generous amount on the blackening seasoning

evenly on both sides of the fillet, patting by hand. Place in the hot

skillet and carefully pour 1 teaspoon of melted butter on top of each

fillet (the butter may flame up). Cook uncovered over the same high

heat until the underside looks charred, about 2 minutes (the time will

vary according to the fillets thickness and heat of the skillet). Turn

the fish over and again pour 1 teaspoon of melted butter on top. Cook

until fish is done, about 2 minutes more. Repeat with remaining fillets.

Serve piping hot with melted butter in a small dish for dipping.


Blackening Seasoning


3 tablespoons Paprika

2 tablespoons Salt

1 tablespoon Granulated Garlic

4 teaspoons Black Pepper

2 teaspoons White Pepper

1 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

1 teaspoon Dried Thyme

1 teaspoon Italian Seasonings


Mix well and store in a jar with a tight lid. It will keep for a year.


Merry Christmas!!!

Dec 192011

One day at Commander’s Palace restaurant, Ella Brennan wanted

a dish to replace Trout Almandine using local ingredients. The dish

that was created was Trout with Pecans. Since trout is not common in

Arkansas, I make it with catfish. The combination is fantastic. This is

a favorite when the new crop of pecans is available.


4 Catfish Fillets 5-7 ounces

Creole  Seasoning

Egg Wash

Seafood Breading

Canola Oil for cooking catfish

Meuniere Sauce

1/3 cup Pecans coarsley chopped


While making meuniere sauce, add pecans to sauce so the pecans

can brown with the butter. Rinse fillets and pat dry. Season both sides

with seafood seasoning. Dip each fillet in egg wash, and then dredge

in Seafood Breading, shaking off excess. Generously coat the bottom

of a large skillet with oil and heat over moderately high heat. Sauté

fillets, turning once, until golden brown and crisp, 3-4 minutes on

each side. Place fillet on serving plate and top with Pecan Meuniere


Seafood Breading


3 pounds Corn Flour

3 tablespoons Salt

2 tablespoons Black Pepper

1 tablespoon Cayenne

1 tablespoon Paprika

2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning

1 tablespoon Granulated Garlic


Mix well. Store in an airtight container. It will hold for 3


Meuniere Sauce


2 sticks Butter

2 tablespoons Lemon Juice

2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter until it stops bubbling

and the milk solids at the bottom of the pan begin to brown. Carefully

add the lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce; the butter will foam.

Cook until the foam subsides.


Dish Seven Blackened Redfish

Dec 152011

This is not a Creole or Cajun dish.  However, clams are traditionally found in one dish during the feast of the Seven Fishes

Fresh clams are not found locally in the waters that surround New

Orleans. They are found along the Atlantic shores of the New England

states. However, this is a favorite dish of mine. It is one that can be

prepared quickly. This is one of the dishes that I cooked a lot when I

was in my teens. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

3 tablespoons Butter

1 tablespoon Garlic chopped

3 tablespoons Flour

3 6.5ounce cans Chopped Clams save juice

1 8 ounce bottle Clam Juice

1 teaspoon Fresh Parsley chopped

1 teaspoon Fresh Basil chopped

¼ teaspoon Fresh Oregano chopped

8 ounces Linguini cooked to al dente

Fresh Parmesan cheese grated

Cook pasta, drain, and return to pot it was cooked in. In a medium

saucepan over medium heat, sauté garlic in butter until golden brown.

Mix in the flour and cook for a few minutes to cook out the flour taste.

Add the clam juice, reserved from cans and bottle, and seasonings.

Cover and bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer

for 5 minutes. Add clams and heat for 2 minutes. Pour sauce over

pasta and toss until the pasta is coated. Top individual portions with

Parmesan cheese.


Next Dish Catfish with Pecans

Dec 122011

New Orleans is blessed being surrounded by water filled with

wonderful seafood. This dish celebrates the French. The French will

stuff a crepe with almost anything. Of course in New Orleans, seafood

is the filling of choice. You can use any fresh seafood in the dish. If

you are afraid of making crepes, most grocery stores sell them already



Crepe Batter (See below)

1/3 cup Onions finely chopped

2 tablespoons Dry Vermouth

3 tablespoons Flour

1½ cups plus 2 tablespoons Milk divided

1 cup cooked Shrimp peeled, deveined and coarsely chopped

1 cup lump Crabmeat picked over for shells

1 cup Crawfish Tails coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh Parsley chopped

3 tablespoons fresh Parmesan Cheese grated


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13×9 inch baking pan.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions

and cook until onions are tender & translucent about 5 minutes.

Add vermouth and cook another minute. Stir in fl our and cook for

1 minute, constantly stirring. Gradually stir in 1½ of milk. Bring to

a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the

sauce thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the seafood. Reserve ½

cup of the seafood mixture. To assemble the crepes, spoon about ¼

cup of the seafood mixture down the center of the crepe. Roll up the

crepes and place them seam side down in the pan. Stir parsley and

remaining 2 tablespoons of milk into the reserved seafood mixture.

Spoon the mixture down the center of the crepe and sprinkle with the

Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered 15 to 20 minutes or until heated

through. Serve immediately.


Crepe Batter


1¾ cups Flour

1 tablespoon Sugar

2 cups Milk

1 Egg

1/3 cup Canola Oil

5 tablespoons Butter melted plus extra for pan.

Place the fl our and sugar in a medium-mixing bowl. Slowly whisk

in the milk, egg, oil, and butter. Heat a nonstick pan or crepe pan over

moderate heat. Pour ¼ cup of the crepe batter into the center of the

hot pan and tilt it in all directions. The batter should coat the pan in a

light covering. After about 30 seconds, the bottom side of the crepe

should be lightly browned and the crepe should be ready to be fl ipped.

Shake the pan in order to release the crepe, and then turn it by using

a spatula. Cook the crepe for an additional 15-20 seconds and then

remove it from the pan.


Next Dish Linguini with Clam Sauce

Happy Birthday Dad!

Dec 082011

Chef Warren Leruth, of LeRuth’s restaurant, created oyster and

artichoke soup. This soup was the house special. It has since been

widely copied around the world but never duplicated. Chef Leruth

once said that his recipe contained no cream. It is magic what the chef

was able to  do. I guess that is why I have gravitated to the restaurant

business, hoping to create some magic of my own.


6 cups quartered Artichoke Hearts (Reserve Liquid)

½ gallon Chicken Stock or Broth

¾ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

½ tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce

½ teaspoon Hot Sauce

1 cup Onions diced

1 cup Green Onions chopped

½ tablespoon Oregano

½ teaspoon Thyme

½ teaspoon Salt

½ tablespoon White Pepper

1 tablespoon Granulated Garlic

2 tablespoons Light Brown Sugar

3 sticks Butter

¾ cup Flour

3 tablespoons Lemon Juice

1 quart Oysters chopped


Melt butter and sauté onions until transparent. Add green onions

and sauté for 2 minutes. Mix chicken stock and artichoke juice. Add

flour to onions and stir with a wire whisk. Cook for 2 minutes. Add

stock mixture and stir. Add artichokes, lemon juice and Parmesan

Cheese; stir. Add Worcestershire Sauce, hot sauce, oregano, thyme,

salt, white pepper, granulated garlic, and brown sugar, sprinkling

all of the ingredients over the entire area of soup to avoid clumping.

Cook for 10 minutes on low temperature. Add oysters and cook for 5



Next Recipe Seafood Crepes


Dec 052011

I have always loved frog legs. It seems that my dog, Abigail, likes

them too. She is always searching the yard looking for frogs. When

she finds them, she chases them and tries to bite them. So, I lovingly

name this dish after my little girl.


16 pair Frog Legs separated

1 teaspoon Salt

½ teaspoon White Pepper

1 tablespoon Seafood Seasoning Blend

1 cup Flour

½ cup Olive Oil

2 teaspoons Garlic minced

2 tablespoons Clam Juice

1 tablespoon Lemon Juice

1 tablespoon Heavy Cream

6 tablespoons Butter, cold cut into 1-tablespoon pieces

1 tablespoon Fresh Parsley chopped

Pinch Black Pepper


Lightly season frog legs with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon

white pepper. Combine flour with Seafood Seasoning Blend and the

remaining salt and pepper. In batches, dredge legs in flour and shake

off the excess. Heat Olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high

heat. Add legs in two batches and cook, turning constantly until golden

brown 2 to 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Carefully drain

all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the pan and return to heat. Add garlic

and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add clam and

lemon juices and bring to a boil. Cook until reduces by half, about

1 minute. Add heavy cream and cook for 30 seconds. Reduce heat

to medium-low and add the butter, several pieces at a time, stirring

constantly, until all the butter has been incorporated. Remove from

heat. Stir in parsley and black pepper. Return legs to pan and cook

over medium heat to warm through, shaking pan back and forth to

coat evenly with sauce, about 1 minute.


Next Dish Oyster Artichoke Soup

Dec 012011


This dish, along with Shrimp Remoulade, is the two most popular


cold appetizers in New Orleans. These dishes was originally created


to take crabmeat that was close to going bad and make it taste good.


The word Ravigote means revived. Someone wondered how would


this dish taste using fresh crabmeat. Of course the dish tasted 100 %




2 teaspoons Garlic minced


2 tablespoons fresh Parsley chopped


6 tablespoons Red Onions minced


2 tablespoons Capers chopped


1 teaspoon Creole Seasoning


2 tablespoons Lemon Juice


1 pound Lump Crabmeat, cleaned of shells


¼ cup Creole Mustard


¼ cup Mayonnaise


1 teaspoon Prepared Horseradish


12 thick slices of Tomatoes


Shredded Lettuce


In a mixing bowl, combine the garlic, parsley, onions, capers,


creole seasoning, and lemon juice. With a fork, mash and stir the


ingredients in the bottom of the bowl to allow the flavors to bloom.

Let sit for 2 minutes. Add the crabmeat, mustard, mayonnaise, and


horseradish. Toss gently but thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.


Top four small plates with shredded lettuce. Place three tomatoes in a


circle on each plate. Top with ¼ of the crabmeat mixture.


Monday’s  Dish Froglegs Abigail