Oct 312013

Last night, the Boston Red Soxs won the World Series. This got me thinking of my father. He was born and raised in Boston. Unfortunately, he never go to see his home town team win the Series. So to honor the Red Soxs and my dad, here is a recipe for New England Style Clam Chowder. Most clam chowders are bland. But this one has more flavor that the traditional ones.

3 8-ounce bottles Clam Juice

1 pound Russet Potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) Butter

3 slices Bacon, finely chopped

2 cups chopped Onions

1 1/4 cups chopped Celery with leaves (about 2 large stalks)

2 Garlic Cloves, chopped

1 Bay Leaf

1/4 cup All Purpose Flour

6 6 1/2-ounce cans chopped Clams, drained, juices reserved

1 1/4 cups Half and Half

1 teaspoon Hot Sauce

1 teaspoon Thyme

Bring bottled clam juice and potatoes to boil in heavy large saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until bacon begins to brown, about 8 minutes. Add onions, celery, garlic and bay leaf and sauté until vegetables soften, about 6 minutes. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes (do not allow flour to brown). Gradually whisk in reserved juices from clams. Add potato mixture, clams, half and half,  hot sauce, and thyme. Simmer chowder 5 minutes to blend flavors, stirring frequently. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Bring to simmer before serving.)


Oct 282013

Last night, I made this dish for my wife. The weather is starting to turn cool. She always likes soups for meals in the colder months.

Chicken and sausage gumbo has been around for a long time.

When Mr. B’s restaurant, located in the French Quarter, opened, they

called their gumbo Gumbo Ya Ya. This gumbo tends to be thinner

than a seafood gumbo. But it taste just as good. This gumbo is great

when fresh seafood is not available.

5 pounds Chicken meat medium dice

2 tablespoons Creole Seasoning Blend

2½ cups Flour

1 cup Vegetable Oil

2 cups Onions chopped

1½ cups Celery chopped

2 cups Green Bell Pepper

6 cups Chicken Stock or Broth

1½ tablespoons Garlic minced

1½ pounds Andouille Sausage cut into small discs

4 cups Rice cooked and hot

Season chicken with Creole seasoning blend and let stand at room

temperature for 20 minutes. Measure flour into a large paper bag.

Add chicken and shake until well coated. Remove chicken and set

remaining flour aside. In a large skillet, brown chicken in very hot oil.

When browned, remove chicken and set aside. Stir oil remaining in

the skillet with a wire whisk to loosen any brown bits remaining on

the bottom of the pan. Whisk in 1 cup of the remaining flour and whisk

constantly over medium heat until the roux becomes dark brown. Be

sure to stir constantly and do not let this mixture burn. If it burns,

you must start the roux over. It will probably take 15-25 minutes.

Add onions, celery and bell pepper, cooking until the vegetables are

tender. Transfer roux and vegetables to a large heavy saucepan. Add

stock to the roux and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Lower heat

to a quick simmer and add the garlic, sausage and chicken. Continue

cooking, covered, until the chicken is tender, 1¾-2 hours. Adjust

seasonings and serve in bowls over rice.


Oct 242013

Brennan’s had 2 baked oyster dishes on their menu, Oysters Rockefeller and Oysters Casino. Brennan’s Oyster Casino was nothing like Clams Casino that you find on the East Coast. Clams Casino are a baked stuffed clam along the lines of Oysters Mocsa, but not as flavorful. Brennan’s Oysters Casino is made with bacon and a cocktail sauce, which is the way some people eat raw oysters minus the bacon.

48 Oysters in their shell

12 strips of Bacon, lightly cooked and cut into 4 pieces

3 cups Cocktail Sauce (see below)

Rock Salt

Preheat oven to 475 degrees

Using an oyster knife, pry open the oyster shell, then remove the oyster. Discard the top shells; scrub and dry the bottom shells. Drain the oysters. Line eight pans or ovenproof trays with a layer of rock salt about an inch deep. Arrange six oyster shells in each pan, then return the oysters to their shells. Top each oyster with a piece of bacon.

Bake the oysters in the oven for three minutes, then remove them from the oven and top each with 1 tablespoon cocktail sauce. Return the oysters to the oven and cook until bubbling hot, about 5 minutes.

Serve each person one tray of oysters.


2 cups Ketchup

1 cup prepared Chili Sauce

2 1/2 tablespoons Horseradish

1 teaspoon Lemon Juice

1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce

1/2 teaspoon Salt

1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper

In a large bowl, combine the ketchup, chili sauce, and horseradish. Stir in the lemon juice, Worcestershire, salt, and pepper. Chill for at least 2 hours prior to serving.

This sauce will keep, covered for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.


Oct 212013

Here is another recipe from Brennan’s. This dish had been removed from the menu. However, it was requested so much, it was put back on. This redfish is topped with crabmeat and a red wine mushroom sauce.

I have not heard any news on the new restaurant that will be housed in the building. I also have not heard anything on Brennan’s reopening in a new location.


1/2 cup (1/2 stick) plus 2 tablespoons Butter

1 1/2 teaspoons minced Garlic

2 cups sliced Mushrooms

2 teaspoons Paprika

1/4 cup Tomato Paste

2 tablespoons all-purpose Flour plus extra fo dredging

1 cup sliced Scallions

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire Suace

1 1/2 cups Chicken Stock

2 tablespoons chopped fresh Parsley

1/4 cup Burgundy Wine

4 Redfish Fillets 3 to 4 ounces each (Tilapia, drum or trout can be subsituted)

1 pound lump Crabmeat, picked over to remove any shell and cartilage

Salt and White Pepper

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large saucepan over meduim heat and add the garlic, mushrooms, paprika, and tomato paste. Cook the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, then blend in 2 tablespoons flour. Add the scallions, Worcestershire, and chicken stock and whisk the mixture with a wire whisk. Season with salt and pepper, then stir in the parsley and wine. Simmer the sauce for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring frequently.

While the sauce is cooking, prepare the redfish. Sprinkle the fillets on both sides with salt and pepper, then dredge in flour.

Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large skillet and cook the fish over moderately high heat about 5 minutes until flaky; turn the fillets once during cooking.

Carefully fold the crabmeat into the sauce.

Transfer the fillets to warm plates and top with sauce.


Oct 172013

Established in 1953, the Bon Ton Cafe is the oldest Cajun restaurant in New Orleans. Run by the Pierce family since opening, the Bon Ton serves the authentic, more traditional preparations of Cajun cuisine from century-old family recipes created along the bayous of South Louisiana. Here is a dish named for the founder of the restaurant Al Pierce.

Serves 1

1 dozen Oysters (freshly shucked)

2 cups Flour

1/4 cup Margarine

1 teaspoon Paprika

1 teaspoon Parsley, chopped

1/2 cup Beef Broth (bouillon)

3 cups Frying Oil

Juice of 1/2 Lemon

Salt to taste (1/4 teaspoon)

Pepper to taste (1/4 teaspoon)

Dust oysters in flour. Deep-fry in preheated oil (350 degrees) until golden brown. Remove and drain.

Melt margarine in skillet. Add beef broth and simmer until mixture thickens slightly. Place fried oysters in mixture. (The bottoms of the oysters become soaked while the tops remain crisp.) Season with salt, pepper and lemon and sprinkle lightly with paprika.

Place in broiler until oysters brown slightly. Sprinkle with parsley and serve around bouillon rice, adding sauce from oysters.

Bouillon Rice

1 cup cooked Rice (place on side)

1 teaspoon Margarine

1/4 cup Beef Broth (bouillon)

1/4 cup Mushrooms, chopped

1/4 cup Onions, chopped

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1/4 teaspoon Pepper

Sauté margarine, onions, broth, mushrooms, salt and pepper until onions are clear. Add to cooked rice and stir oven low heat until rice absorbs the liquid.

Mound rice on plate, surround with Oysters Alvin, and serve.


Oct 142013

Felix’s is located across the street from Acme Oyster House in the French Quarter. While Amce is more popular, I find that the quality of oysters are the same in both places. Most people stand in line to get a table at Acme. My advice is to cross the street and you will have a meal just as good as Acme.

48 shucked fresh Oysters

the Juice ( Liquor) from the Oysters

8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter

1/2 cup diced French Shallots

8 Garlic Cloves, minced

1/2 cup chopped Parsley

1 pound cooked Spaghetti

Salt and Pepper to taste

grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese for garnish

Strain the oyster liquor to remove the grit and set aside.

Place the butter in a suacepan over medium heat until melted. Add the shallots, garlic and parsley and saute until softened. Add the oysters and their liquor and sauté until the edges of the oysters just begin to curl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Keep the sauce warm while you cook the spaghetti.

In a pot of boiling water, cook the spaghetti until the strains are al dente. Drain in a colander or strainer. Place the pasta and the sauce with the ousters in a large bowl and toss to coat the pasta evenly.

Divide the spaghetti and oysters among 4 ot 6 pasta bowls or shallow soup bowls. Garnish with the grated cheese and serve immediately.


Oct 102013

My wife has been in New Orleans while her mother is in the hospital. The only good thing about this is I get to play in the kitchen. There are many things that my wife does not like. So I have taken the opportunity to eat thing that she does not like. I always cook Linguine with clams every chance I get. To my recipe for clam sauce, I added Andouille and Sriracha Hot Sauce. Here is a photo of the completed dish.



3 tablespoons Olive Oil

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

1/2 pound Andouille Sausage, cut into disc then quartered

1 1/2  teaspoons Sriracha

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 olive oil until golden brown.

Mix in the flour and cook for a few minutes to cook out the fl our 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, Andouille and Sriracha. Heat for 2 minutes. Pour sauce over

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

Parmesan cheese.


Oct 072013

Here is a recipe from the restaurant of the other Top Chef comeptitor, Executive Chef Michael Sichel of Galatoire’s. This recipe is named after Yvonne Galatoire Wynne, the Grandaughter of founder Jean Justin Galatoire. Yvonne served as front cashier and then later as president of the restaurant. The recipe could be used as a garnish for fish, meats, or poultry or it can be enjoyed on it’s own as below. You can substitute Crawfish for the Crabmeat.

6 fresh Artichokes

Juice of 1 Lemon

1 recipe Meuniere Butter (see below)

1 pound Button Mushrooms, sliced

1 bunch Scallions (white and green parts), chopped

1 pound Jumbo Lump Crabmeat, cleaned

Lemon Quarters, for garnish (optional)

In a large pot, submerge the artichokes in water, add the lemon juice, and boil for approximately 30 minutes until the stems are tender. Allow the artichokes to cool and peel all of the exterior leaves from the artichoke hearts. Using a spoon or your thumb, remove and discard the chokes, leaving only the bottoms. Cut the bottoms into slices. Set aside.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the meuniere butter. Add the mushrooms, artichokes, and scallions and saute. Gently fold in the crabmeat and continue to saute until the crabmeat and continue to saute until the crabmeat is heated throuh. Remove from the heat. Garnish with lemon quarters, if desired. Serve at once.

For Crawfish Yvonne, simply substitute 2 pounds of peeled fresh crawfish tails for the crabmeat.

Meuniere Butter

1 pound Salted Butter

1 tablespoon Fresh Lemon Juice

1 tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar

In a meduim saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter, whisking constantly. for 8 to 10 minutes, until the sediment in the butter turns dark brown, almost (but not quite) to the point of burning, and the liquid is a deep golden color. Remove the pan from the heat and continue to whish slowly, adding the lemon juice and the vinegar to the browned butter. The sauce will froth until the acids have evaporated. When the frothing subsides, the sauce is complete.

Makes 2 cups.


Oct 032013

Last night was the premiere of Top Chef New Orleans. I don’t know why it took them 11 seasons to have their competition in New Orleans. New Orleans is the most unique food city in America. Two local chefs were selected to compete, Michael Sichel (Executive Chef of Galatoire’s) and Justin Devillier (Owner and Executive Chef of La Petit Grocery).  Here is a recipe from La Petit Grocery’s menu. This recipe is from a friend of mine’s cookbook, New Orleans Chef’s Table by Lorin Gaudin. You can find her book on Amazon.

3 ounces Butter

1 tablespoon Steen’s Cane Syrup or Molasses

1/2 pound Dark Brown Sugar

3 tablespoons Amber or Dark Rum

1/2 teaspoon Salt, or  more to taste

4 1/4 cups Cream

1 Vanilla Bean

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Granulated Sugar

3 sheets Gelatin or 1 tablespoon Gelatin Powder

6 Egg Yolks

Melt butter with cane syrup. Add brown sugar, rum, and salt and cook over medium heat until bubbling and just beginning to smoke. Add 4 cups cream and whisk until caramel is dissolved. Scrape seeds out of vanilla bean and add both seeds and bean to cream mixture. Cover and allow to steep.

Meanwhile, combine granulated sugar and 1/4 cup water in a heavy-bottomed nonreactive pot. Cover and bring to a boil. When steam begins to escape, remove the lid. Allow sugar to carmelize to a deep amber, brushing down the sides of pot frequently to prevent crystalization. Once carmel is ready, immediately take it off the heat and whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup cream. Add this caramel mixture to cream mixture, whisk thoroughly, and gently warm until caramel is totally dissolved.

At this point, begin to bloom gelatin by submerging sheets in ice water ( if using powdered gelatin, follow manufacturer’s instructions). Then temper some of the warm caramel-cream mixture into the yolks, return yolk mix to the pot, and cook until pudding is the texture of thick cream anglaise. Immediately whisk in bloomed gelatin and strain mixture into a bowl set over ice. Allow to cool until moderately thickened before portioning into small, wide mouth mason jars or other decorative containers. Allow to set for al least 4 hours.

Serve with gently whipped cream and cookies.