8 years ago today, many New Orleanians lives were changed. Hurricane Katrina hit. Many restaurants closed their doors for good. One area that never recovered was West End Park. Here was a collection of seafood restaurants on or around Lake Pontchartrain. The best of the remaining few before Katrina was Bruning’s. Katrina was not the first to do damage to this West End jewel. Hurricane Georges, in 1998, caused the restaurant to move to a building in front of the original one. But Katrina was too much. I remember many of great meals at Bruning’s and the other good restaurants on West End Park. Here is a dish that was Burning’s specialty, Whole Stuffed Flounder
1/2 stick Butter
1/4 cup Flour
3 Green Onions, chopped
3 cups Shrimp Stock, or Seafood Stock
1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
1 lb Claw Crabmeat, picked thru for shells
1/4 teaspooon Salt
4 large whole Flounders
1 tablespoon Salt-Free Creole Seasoning
1 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Flour
1 cup Milk
1/2 cup Clarified Butter
1 Lemon, sliced
Chopped Fresh Parsley
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Make the stuffing first. Melt the butter and stir in the folur to make a blond roux. Stir in the green onions and cook until limp. Whisk in the shrimp stock and Worcestershire and bring to a boil, then add the crabmeat, salt, and cayenne. Gently toss the crabmeat in the suace to avoid breaking the limps.
Wash the flounders and pat dry. Mix the Creole Seasoning and salt into the flour and coat outside of the flounders with it. Mix the eggs and milk together in a wide bowl and pass the flounder thru it, then dredge in the seasoned flour again.
Heat the clarified butter in a skillet and saute the fish, 1 at a time, about 4 minutes on each side, turning once. Remove and keep warm.
Cut a slit from head to toe across the top of the flounders. Divide the stuffing among the fish, spooning inside the slit and piling it on top. Place the flounders in a baking pan and put in the oven for 6 minutes.
Place the flounders on hot plates. Garnish with lemon slices and fresh chopped parsley.