Cajun Grain Rice

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I’ve been following the Donald Link’s (Chef and author of Real Cajun) video series called Taste of Place on his website, if you haven’t checked it out, I highly recommend it. He tours farms, goes out with fisherman, and visits with purveyors of superior products, not just in Louisiana, but primarily in the south. He then usually does a cooking video with whatever product was featured.

Long story short, I recently caught the episode where Link visits the farm of Kurt & Karen Unkel who own and operate a rice farm in Kinder, Louisiana (the video is embedded below.) Kurt’s words and philosophies really make sense to me. He’s organic, not because it’s trendy, but because it makes the most sense, for nutrition, flavor, and I’m sure profitability. The rice goes into a slow feed and a husker and into the bag that it’s shipped in. It still contains the germ and all of the other elements that a nutritious rice should.

Cajun Grain
11574 Hwy. 190
Kinder, LA 70648
1-337-207-0966


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I visited the Cajun Grain website after viewing this video and was elated to see that they sell their Cajun Grain Brown Jasmine Rice on Amazon! I immediately ordered two 4 lb bags which arrived a few days ago.

From Cajun Grain Rice – Kinder, Louisiana

I opened the bag and took a deep whiff and you can immediately smell the field. I can’t wait to experiment with this incredible, minimally processed product. I’m thinking Boudin! Here is the video:

<a href='http://www.delish.com/recipes/cooking-recipes/taste-of-place/?vid=69d958d8-e8fb-f448-8430-300be80818bf&#038;videoId=69d958d8-e8fb-f448-8430-300be80818bf&#038;src=v5:embed::&#038;from=sharepermalink' target='_new' title='The beauty of brown rice'>Video: The beauty of brown rice</a>

Kurt has also been featured in the documentary film Harmony, which is narrated by Prince Charles, as well as the New York Times article, Rice Dreams in Louisiana.

You can find and purchase Cajun Grain Brown Jasmine Rice from their website which is below, or on Amazon here:

Cajun Grain Brown Jasmine Rice, Two 4lb. bags.

Cajun Grain
P.O. Box 370
Kinder, LA 70648
337-207-0966

From Cajun Grain Rice – Kinder, Louisiana

Stay tuned as I can’t wait to share some recipes using this wonderful Louisiana product! I am also in full swing in sharing all of the details of my most recent trip to Louisiana! Most recently, my visits to Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant and the Abita Brewery. It feels good to be back!!

Related Posts:

Review of Donald Link’s Real Cajun

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which provides links to all of the recipes featured at Nola Cuisine!

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Abita Brewing Company Tour

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From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

After my first stop at Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant, and a brief stop in Pontchatoula, I jumped back into my car and made my way east, above the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain to Abita Springs, LA to visit and hopefully take the Abita Brewery tour.

Abita Brewing Company Tasting Room & Tour
166 Barbee Rd.
Abita Springs, LA
1-985-893-3143

The Abita Brewing Company Visitor’s center was opened in 2008, the old brewery now houses the Abita Brew Pub. They even have their own cookbook called Abita Beer: Cooking Louisiana True

Upon arriving at the brewery I quickly pulled into a parking spot, and hustled up to the front of the visitor’s center:


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From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

I bellied up to the end of a group which was just entering and noticed that everyone was wearing wrist bands, so I stepped back and approached the guy at the door clutching a $20 bill in my hand.

“How much is the tour?” I asked.

“$20 bucks” he replied “You’ve got just enough!” then put his hand out. As I reached to hand him my dough he broke out into a wild cackle that would have made a Hyena blush, then slapped me on the back. Crack!

“This is free man!! You’re just in time! Here’s a wristband and a cup, have a good time!” Another friendly slap on the back and off I went, entering the Abita Brewery visitors center tasting room which wins the 2011 NOLA CUISINE award for Best Place to get Drunk for Free! Not a really a real award, mind you, but if I had one, Abita would win it, hands down!

By the way, don’t be a stooge like me and go here alone, I could only sample as I had to drive into New Orleans. Best to find some other stooge to drive you so that you can truly partake in this excellent, rare, FREE beer drinking opportunity!

Also, please forgive me for the less than crisp photography on this post, but please note: All photos were taken while holding an ice cold cup of Abita beer…I know my priorities. 🙂

The visitors center is wonderfully decorated with art work on the walls representing many of your favorite or soon to be favorite Abita beers, Purple Haze:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

My old standby Abita Amber:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

One of my new favorites Jockamo IPA:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

Now, I’m not going to lie, the artwork wasn’t the first thing that I noticed upon entering the tasting room, it was the line of fellow guests lining up behind the Mahogany bar to fill up their cups from one of 15 tappers of different Abita Beers. As much as they wanted, as many different kinds as they would like to try…all for free. In essence, a beer drinker’s bliss.

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana
From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

The atmosphere is ultra relaxed, everyone just hanging out meeting some new people, drinking some great beer, playing a game of ring toss:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

After about 15-20 minutes of hanging out sampling the wares, the tour begins with a video. The crowd mostly ignores the video, then the tappers are cut off to focus attention onto the tour into the brewery which is about 10 minutes long.

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

It is quite loud in the cellar, and folks tended to keep talking while our tour guide was talking, which made it very hard to hear. Understandable I guess, free beer tends to make people chatter. I only caught snippets of the dialogue as I was standing in the back, fortunately for those of us that were interested, the information is available online here.

Here are some pics from inside the Cellar:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana
From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

Booties must be worn if wearing open toed shoes:

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

After the tour, the group returned to the tasting room for you guessed it, more free beer. More hanging out, relaxing, enjoying.

From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana
From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana
From Abita Brewery – Abita Springs, Louisiana

My visit finished early as I had to drive, and was looking forward to a long afternoon, and even longer evening in New Orleans. I jumped in my rental and made my way for the Ponchartrain causeway, which is 23.83 miles directly across Lake Pontchartrain into New Orleans!

Next up Radosta’s for an excellent cup of Gumbo and a Roast Beef Po Boy.

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which provides links to all of the recipes featured on Nola Cuisine!

Related Posts:

Baby Back Ribs with Turbo dog Barbecue Sauce Recipe

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Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant

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From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

Well I’m back. I know, I know…it’s been a long stretch between posts, but a recent visit to New Orleans and some out lying areas of Louisiana, has me re-inspired, rejuvenated, and ready to take on the daunting task of posting all of the terrific content I have compiled on that four day journey, I also have some new recipes to share as well. So here we go…it sincerely feels great to be back at this! I hope you enjoy!

Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant
30160 Highway 51
Akers, LA 70421
1-985-386-6666

Long on my Louisiana bucket list of places to dine has been Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant, about 45 miles away from New Orleans, Akers, Louisiana to be exact, on Highway 51, between Lake Maurepas and Lake Pontchartrain, and pretty much in the middle of nowhere. It’s a scenic drive from the airport, I-10 provides great views of Bayou Piquant and Lake Pontchartrain, and elevated Highway 51 snakes through the Maurepas Swamp, providing visitors with excellent views of the Cypress swamps, complete with spanish moss. I’m a sap and I love Louisiana, so every time I see those picturesque views after I’ve been away for a spell, it gives me a nice warm glow.


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Josie and Louis Middendorf opened Middendorf’s Seafood Restaurant on July 4, 1934 during the great depression. The restaurant was passed down through two generations of the family. The Lamonte family who owned the restaurant for 40 years, sold it and passed the torch to Horst & Karen Pfeifer in 2006 after the couple lost their New Orleans restaurant Bella Luna during Hurricane Katrina.

The original Middendorf’s restaurant is still standing across the parking lot from the new restaurant and deck where I enjoyed my meal.

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

I only made it into the main restaurant to say hello to the hostess with the beautiful smile, and to tell her that I would like to go eat on the deck, she directed me and off I went!

It was dog hot on the day I visited, but the deck provided a shaded atmosphere with misters running along the openings to keep it cool…an awesome view to boot:

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

It was totally comfortable out there, perfect. In fact, I wish I was on that deck right now, ordering up some of the best fried seafood known to man and a cold beer. I would be on that deck all the time if I were a local. The deck is complete with boat parking:

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

On to the good stuff…

Middendorf’s is the Mecca of fried Catfish, specifically, thin fried catfish. Understand, I’ve been reading about this place for years and years, well before the current owners took the reins, so there is cause for concern about building a pyramid up in one’s mind.

At the deck at Middendorf’s you order at the bar and pickup at the bar (although everything was delivered to me, along with smiles and nice conversation.) The beers available are generic, miller lite, bud, corona, etc.., no Abita, no fancyfied beers, which tells me this place is all local, love it!

I ordered the thin fried catfish, which is the legendary house specialty, and I also read great things about Middendorf’s Barbecued Oysters, so I ordered them as an appetizer with a cup of Turtle Soup.

I expected the Barbecue Oysters to be along the lines of Barbecue Shrimp, but they were totally different, in a good way, more along the lines of an Oysters Roffignac. Cleanly shucked with a wonderful red topping, a great first taste for my first meal in Louisiana! To be quite honest, I didn’t take notes, I don’t remember what flavors were going on there, just that they were wonderful and like no other Oyster dish I’ve had previous! Delicious!

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

The Turtle Soup left me a little flat, not terrible by any means, just didn’t blow me away.

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

On to the star of the show, Thin Fried Catfish, probably the most perfectly fried fish I’ve had. Crispy, clean flavor, not a bit greasy. The stuff dreams are made of.

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant
From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

The hush puppies are very good, as well as the coleslaw.

From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant
From Middendorf's Seafood Restaurant

After making my taste buds happy at Middendorf’s I was back on the road to my next destination, with a brief stop off in Ponchatoula, the berry capital. Did a little exploring then moved on to Abita Springs for my next stop (as well as my next post), the Abita Brewery Tour!

Check out my friend Tim’s post on Middendorf’s at his blog RouxBDoo’s Cajun and Creole Food Blog!

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes, which provides links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

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Praline Bacon Recipe

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I don’t think there is anything quite as sinful as Praline Bacon. In fact, it is so sinful it could have only been created in New Orleans, and in fact it was, at Elizabeth’s Restaurant in 1998.


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The flavor marriage of pralines and good smoky bacon is so wrong that it just has to be right. Cochon Butcher (restaurant website) also has Praline Bacon, but taken to a new level, as it is more of a praline with chunks of their house made bacon inside of it. It’s as my friend Timmy from RouxBDoo’s Cajun & Creole Food Blog calls it, “like Sugary Crack”.

From

This recipe is more in the style of Elizabeth’s, although I like to leave my Pecans a little chunkier than they do.

Make this with breakfast, and you will absolutely blow your family and guests away with minimal effort!

From Nola Cuisine

Praline Bacon Recipe

1 lb. Good quality thick cut Bacon
4 Tbsp Steen’s Cane Syrup
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
3/4 Cup Pecans, toasted and chopped

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Place a wire rack on a sheet tray. Combine the Pecans and brown sugar. Lay the bacon side by side on the rack, place in the preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until the bacon is sizzling and starting to brown around the edges. The object is for the bacon to cook about 3/4 of the way through before adding the topping.

Push the partially cooked bacon as close together as possible on the rack and brush with the cane syrup, this will give the topping something to grab on to. Cover generously with the Pecan/brown sugar topping. Place back in the oven for about 10 minutes more or until the topping is bubbly and the bacon is good and brown. Let cool.

As the Praline Bacon cools it will set up and have a nice chewy bite to it.

Serves 4 as a side.

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

From Nola Cuisine
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Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Peach Salsa Recipe

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Yes, I am still alive and well, but spare time has been very hard to come by these days, so please forgive my long stretches of dead air here on Nola Cuisine. I am however, making a concerted effort to start posting more religiously on this site, my goal is one post per week.

On another off topic note, I’ve been forced to put all comments into moderation because of the army of rat b@stard spam bots that have been attacking my posts, so please continue to leave your comments, I love reading them, and they will eventually make it up (provided you’re not selling Viagra or one of the other broke-d!ck pharmaceuticals). Funny, I honestly don’t know why there are so many of those but there are, it must be all of the sausage recipes on here. 🙂

Anyway, on to the food…

I came across some beautiful ripe and fragrant Southern Peaches at the store yesterday, and I immediately thought pork for some reason. I made a similar dish with fish last year that I never got up on the site, but this one had to go up. This dish absolutely screams summer. Here is a detail of the peaches, roasted pepper and Vidalia onions fresh off of the grill

From Nola Cuisine

I was going to use cilantro with the peaches but I have some basil in my herb garden which is at it’s absolute peak, it is so beautiful and floral that it almost doesn’t even smell like basil. I tasted a piece with a slice of the grilled peaches and the flavors were a match made in heaven, so I rolled with it!

The Apricot glaze gives another peachy punch to the dish, and another layer of flavor on top of the smoky pork.

I hope you enjoy!

Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Peach Salsa Recipe

For the grilled Peaches:

4 Southern Peaches (must be very ripe) halved and pitted
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
2 Tbsp Steen’s Pure Cane Syrup
2 tsp Creole Seasoning
1 tsp Kosher Salt

Additional grill prep for the salsa:
1 Roasted Red Pepper,
1/2 of a large Vidalia Onion, cut into 1/2″ slices and rubber with olive oil

Warm a gas or charcoal grill to 350-400 degrees F.
Toss all of the above ingredients together, making sure to coat the peaches well. Grill the peaches flat side down until they start to caramelize and get some grill marks, flip them over skin side down onto a cooler spot of the grill to finish warming through. At the same time, roast your pepper on the grill until the skin is black all over, and grill the Vidalia Onion slices.

When the peaches are warmed through and softened remove the skins and slice lengthwise, place into a medium sized bowl. Also peel, seed, and slice the roasted Red pepper into strips; Chop the grilled Vidalia Onion.

Grilled Southern Peach Salsa Recipe

4 Grilled Southern Peaches (see above)
1 Roasted Red Pepper, sliced (see above)
1/2 Grilled Vidalia Onion, chopped (see above)
2 tsp Steen’s Pure Cane Syrup

3 Tbsp Fresh Basil, chopped
Kosher Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients while still hot, serve at room temperature.

Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Peach Salsa Recipe

4 Bone in, thick cut Pork Chops
1 Recipe Seasoning Mix (see below)
1 Recipe Apricot Glaze (see below)
1 Recipe Grilled Peach Salsa

Seasoning mix:
1 Tbsp Creole Seasoning
1 Tbsp Kosher Salt (if using commercial creole seasoning omit)
1 Tbsp Brown Sugar
1 tsp Black Pepper

Combine.

Apricot Glaze:

3 Tbsp Apricot Preserves
1 Tbsp Steen’s Pure Cane Syrup
1 Tbsp Creole Mustard

Combine all ingredients.

Season the pork chops liberally with some of the seasoning mix.

Preheat a Charcoal or Gas grill to 400 degrees F with a pan going with smoldering wood chips (I used Pecan chips). When hot grill the Pork chops to desired degree of doneness, I like mine cooked medium about 140 degrees. Brush the chops with the apricot glaze, let it warm a bit and remove the chops. I pulled mine off at about 132 degrees to allow for carryover cooking. They were a perfect medium at the table.

From Nola Cuisine

Top the glazed chops with a generous portion of the warm Peach Salsa, make sure to drizzle some of the liquid as well. Enjoy!

Serves 4.

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which provides links to all of the recipes featured on Nola Cuisine!

Related Posts:

Homemade Creole Mustard Recipe
Homemade Creole Seasoning Recipe
Boudin Stuffed Pork Chop Recipe

From Nola Cuisine
From Nola Cuisine
From Nola Cuisine
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Creole Mustard Recipe

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From

Creole Mustard is essential in the Louisiana pantry, used in many different preparations where Dijon would be used elsewhere. What would Remoulade sauce be without it? In my search for the characteristics that make Creole Mustard Creole, I found the following definition in what is one of my favorite books on Louisiana cooking American Cooking: Creole and Acadian by Peter S. Feibleman:

Pungent prepared mustard made from the spicy brown mustard seeds rather than the more familiar, but somewhat blander, yellow seeds. The seeds are steeped in distilled white vinegar, then coarsely ground and left to marinate for up to 12 hours longer before packing.

That says a lot about the preparation, but not much about the origin which is always of interest to me. I assume German Creoles were behind the earliest preparations but even more interesting to me is this passage from The Picayune’s Creole Cookbook of 1901:

Mustard is grown extensively in Louisiana, especially the large leaved or curled, which has grown to be a distinct Louisiana variety, quite different from the European. The seed is black, and is raised in Louisiana, and the plant is being more extensively cultivated every year. The large leaves are cooked the same as Spinach, or they may be boiled with salt meat and served as Greens.

Our Creole Mustard Seeds are famous, not only in making sauces, but for medicinal purposes.

The namesake as it turns out is more about the variety of Mustard plant than it is preparation. The book also contains a Creole Mustard Recipe calling for a pound of the above mentioned Creole Mustard. In addition, I also came across this page about black mustard seed that states the following:

The spicy component of black mustard seed is called ‘isothiocyanate’ and it is also found in horseradish and wasabi which belong to the same plant family.

My recipe is made with the more commonly found brown mustard seed and has an addition of horseradish which I think is a flavor must for a good Creole Mustard. In addition to the horseradish this recipe has an added punch which comes from a touch of Cayenne, as well as the garlic and crushed red pepper that I use to flavor the vinegar before steeping the seeds. Here is my homemade Creole Mustard Recipe:

From Nola Cuisine

Creole Mustard Recipe

1/2 Cup Distilled White Vinegar
1/2 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
2 Cloves Garlic, chopped
1/2 Cup Brown Mustard Seeds, crushed
1 Tbsp Freshly Grated Horseradish
Pinch Cayenne Pepper
Pinch Ground Allspice
1 tsp Kosher Salt
1 tsp Granulated Sugar
1 tsp Steen’s 100% Pure Cane Syrup
4 Tbsp Coleman’s Mustard powder
1 small canning jar with lid, sterilized

Place the vinegar, crushed red pepper, and garlic into a small saucepan, bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let steep for 15-20 minutes then strain the mixture, discard the solids. Bring back to a boil then add the mustard seeds, turn off the heat and let steep for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl combine the vinegar with the horseradish, cayenne, salt, sugar, cane syrup, and brown mustard seed. Whisk in the mustard powder. Pour into the sterilized jar, put the lid on and process in a water bath for 15 minutes. When cool, tighten the lid, and make sure the jar is sealed. Place in a cool dark place and let mature for at least 3-4 weeks before using. This step will allow the flavors to marry and mellow which will not be able to take place in the refrigerator, although the mustard will need to be refrigerated after opening.

From Nola Cuisine

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which features links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

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Cornbread and Andouille Stuffing Recipe

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This recipe is an excellent use for leftover cornbread, preferably made the best way in a cast iron skillet. The crust that the cast iron develops will make a better stuffing as it will have a much better texture. I tried out the cornbread recipe from Donald Link’s cookbook Real Cajun (my review), I really liked it (although it’s not a sweet version if that’s what you’re into) and it worked really well for this recipe.

I made a batch of this stuffing with the last of my homemade Andouille sausage from the freezer, I guess it’s time to fire up the smoker again and restock. Here is a pic of my homemade Andouille Sausage.

From Nola Cuisine

I stuffed this dressing into 2 inch thick pork chops and grilled them, just gave them some color then turned the heat down with some smoldering Pecan wood chips underneath. I foolishly forgot to get pictures, because we were starving, sorry.

This would also be an excellent stuffing for Roast Chicken, Turkey, Turducken, or hey, even Peppers.

From Nola Cuisine

Cornbread and Andouille Sausage Recipe

4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
1 Cup Andouille Sausage, finely diced
1 Cup Spanish Onion, finely diced
1 Cup Bell Pepper, finely diced
1/2 Cup Celery, finely diced
2 Tbsp Fresh Garlic, mined
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme leaves, chopped
1 Tbsp Creole Seasoning (less if using commercial, they have more salt)
4 Cups leftover Cornbread, crumbled
1/2 – 1 Cup Chicken Stock
1 Cup Green Onions, finely sliced
1 Egg

Melt the butter in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat, add the Andouille, cook until it starts to render then add the onion, bell pepper, celery, garlic, Thyme and creole seasoning, reduce the heat to medium. Sweat the vegetable mixture until they are tender, stirring often. Here is a pic of the Andouille and vegetable mix which is the base for this dressing:

From Nola Cuisine

Add the cornbread and stir well to coat with the Andouille and vegetable mixture, reduce the heat to medium low. Add the stock a little at a time you do not want the mixture too wet or too dry, but bear in mind that you will be adding an egg when the mixture cools. You can always add more stock, but you can’t take it out.

Stir in the green onions, place the stuffing in a dish and cool in the refrigerator, when cool, add the egg, mix well with your hands.

Makes enough to generously stuff 4-6 Pork Chops or one Chicken. If using for Turkey I would double this recipe.

From Nola Cuisine

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole and Cajun Recipes which links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

Related Posts:

Andouille Sausage Recipe
Oyster Dressing Recipe
Boudin Stuffed Pork Chops with Creole Mustard and Cane Syrup Glaze

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Super Bowl Sunday – Go Saints!!

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Saints fever in New Orleans, I wish I was there to watch the game and get wild in the quarter before and after, but unfortunately that’s not going to happen, so the next best thing is to whip up some game time chow that will, in flavor at least, whisk me and my guests away to New Orleans as we hopefully watch the Saints go marching to victory.

Here are a few ideas for a great Super Bowl party with some New Orleans flavor.

Mix up a Sazerac to kick off your party, a New Orleans original and some say the originial cocktail at that:

Sazerac Cocktail Recipe

From Nola Cuisine

Instead of traditional Shrimp Cocktail, how about a platter of Shrimp Remoulade:

Shrimp Remoulade Recipe

From Nola Cuisine

The Mighty Muffuletta! I can’t wait to bite into this at game time tonight! Here are recipes for all that you need to make your own at home:

Muffuletta Bread Recipe
Muffuletta Olive Salad Recipe
Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe

From Nola Cuisine

Good luck to the Saints!! Bring it home!!!

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole and Cajun Recipes which provides links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

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Parasol’s Style Roast Beef Po Boy Recipe

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From Nola Cuisine

This recipe like many others on Nola Cuisine is written for folks like myself who love the food of New Orleans, but are too far away to walk out their door and have someone else do the cookin’. I’ve had a hunger for a Roast Beef from Parasol’s ever since my trip last March, but since I live in Michigan, this is a major problem, so I decided to put together a recipe to make my own, based on the video below of Parasol’s owner Jeff Carreras making the Po Boy at the restaurant.

I made a recipe based on what I saw, although pared down so that it will work for the home cook. This isn’t a fancy recipe, but I would say most authentic in it’s preparation to what you will find in a lot of neighborhood restaurants in New Orleans, the first bite took me right to Parasol’s in the Irish Channel.

I am totally aware that the host in this clip from the food network is a total Stooge, but this little video is a god send. The owner of Parasol’s graciously shows us how to make their Roast Beef Po Boy, granted we have to listen to that bleach blonde goon yammer through the whole video, but it is almost worth it. This is an unpretentious, neighborhood recipe. Some may lift their nose to the Kitchen Bouquet and some of the preparation, I swayed a little myself, but the end result is totally authentic. Try it for yourself, you’ll be moanin’ in your seat with a land fills worth of gravy stained napkins around you. I promise.

A note on New Orleans French Bread, or Po Boy Bread. I was fortunate enough recently to locate an acceptable substitute for New Orleans Po Boy or French Bread at a local market. Not exact mind you, but it has a lot of the same characteristics, Crisp, yet chewy Crust, soft center, cotton candy-like as it is often called, and just the right size. I’ve tried and tried over the years to create a recipe that is close, but I’m on hiatus from that mission for the time being. You wouldn’t believe the amount of emails I receive asking if I have the magic recipe. Not yet, sorry.

From Nola Cuisine

The object of the Po Boy Bread in this recipe is to make the eating experience as messy as possible. During your first bite the sandwich should flatten somewhat and your hands (as well as chin and possibly clothing) should be awash with gravy, beef debris, mayonnaise and possibly a few shreds of lettuce as the contents spray from the sides as if the sandwich was stepped on. Relax and enjoy, resist the urge to reach for that over sized stack of napkins until the last morsel is gone. In my humble opinion, the best Roast Beef Po Boys in New Orleans are judged by the amount of napkins used to clean up the aftermath.

This post is for my good friend Bill Moran, who unfortunately is laid up in the hospital in Corpus Christi. I wish I was close enough to bring you one of these my friend, I hope you get home soon.

Parasol’s Style Roast Beef Po Boy Recipe

For the Beef:
2 lbs Beef Round, I used a bottom round Roast
Water, enough to cover by one inch in a dutch oven

For the Gravy:

1/2 Cup Flour
1 Tbsp Garlic Powder (must be powder, not granulated)
1 tsp Black Pepper
2 tsp Kosher Salt
1/4 Cup Oil
1 tsp Kitchen Bouquet
3 Cups Broth, reserved from the boiled beef (maybe more if your gravy gets too thick)

Bring the water to a rolling boil. Add the beef roast, when the pot comes back to a boil, reduce the heat to medium to medium high, you should have a heavy simmer. Cook for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Remove from the liquid and refrigerate until cold. Reserve about five cups of the broth, you won’t need all of it, but keep some to thin the gravy out if necessary.

While the beef is cooling make the gravy.

Bring 3 cups of the reserved cooking liquid to a boil in a small saucepan.
In a small bowl whisk together the flour, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, then the oil and kitchen bouquet, when thoroughly blended, whisk the mixture into the boiling broth, whisk together well, and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. If necessary add a little of the reserved broth if the gravy is too thick. It should be. not too thick, not too thin. Let the gravy simmer for 20-30 minutes adjust for seasonings, it should have a good amount of salt as the beef has none.

Preheat the oven to 350 F.
When the beef is cold, slice it as thin as possible and lay the slices in a 9X9 baking pan. The thicker your slices are, the longer it will take in the oven, so slice thin. or your hungry ass will be waiting. 🙂

Cover the beef with 2-3 cups of the gravy. Place into the oven 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the beef is fall apart tender.

For the Po Boy:

2 ten inch French Loaves, see article above
Mayonnaise
2 Tomatoes, sliced
2 Cups shredded Iceburg Lettuce
1 Dill Pickle, sliced
The Roast Beef from the above recipe

Slice the bread in half lengthwise and lay both halves side by side. Slather a bunch of mayonnaise on both sides (I’ll be the cholesterol devil on your shoulder: Come on, your doctor’s not lookin’, don’t be stingy!).

On the top half, add pickle slices, tomato slices, and 1 Cup of the lettuce. On the bottom half, add 1/2 of the beef and gravy mixture (please note, I super-sized the amount of beef in this recipe). Fold the top over the side with the beef and put on a sheet pan. Repeat with the second sandwich. Place the sheet pan in the oven for 2-3 minutes to crisp and warm the bread.

Cut each sandwich in half and serve on paper plates for authenticity. Serve with your favorite cold beer, Barq’s in a bottle, Zapp’s chips, and a big ole’ pile of napkins. Enjoy!

Serves 2 hungry eating machines, or 4 light weights.

From Nola Cuisine
From Nola Cuisine

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

Related Posts:

Parasol’s Restaurant & Bar
Roast Beef Po Boy with Debris Gravy Recipe

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Crawfish Etouffee Recipe

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From Nola Cuisine

As much as I love the spring Crawfish Boil, I always look forward to having some leftover Crawfish tail meat to play with for later use. After my spring boil I had a fair amount of Crawfish leftover so I sat down with a cold beer after our guests had left, relaxed and picked all of the tail meat as well as the fat from the heads.

This is one of those tasks that is actually a very therapeutic process for me, like peeling shrimp, or making roux, where you can just sit or stand there and enjoy the silence and repetition of the task at hand, let your brain go and think about whatever; kind of like sleep without the bad dreams.

From Nola Cuisine

I ended up with about 2 pounds of tail meat, the perfect amount for a nice batch of Crawfish Etouffee. I made a batch of Crawfish Stock from the shells and vacuum sealed the tails and fat for later use.

From Nola Cuisine
From Nola Cuisine

Which brings me to lunch today.

The smell of Crawfish Etouffee or Shrimp Etouffee (my recipe), makes me more nostalgic for Louisiana than any other dish I can think of, even above Gumbo and Red Beans. I arrived home from work tonight to sit down and write this post and was met with the aroma of Etouffee still hanging out in the house, heavenly.

The real key to this recipe as with my Shrimp Etouffee, is the stock. Seafood stocks are simple and require a very short cooking time yielding great results.

This recipe leans a little more to the country than my Shrimp Etouffee Recipe, although they are similar, neither shy with the butter, but this one doesn’t use tomatoes. I hope you enjoy it!

The recipe:

From Nola Cuisine

Crawfish Etouffee Recipe

2 Tbsp Creole Seasoning **Please Note! This recipe is based on my homemade Creole Seasoning! If you use Tony C’s or any others it will turn out much too Salty!!!!)
4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
1 1/2 Cup Onion, Finely Chopped
1/4 Cup Celery, Finely Chopped
1/2 Cup Bell Pepper, Finely Chopped
2 lbs Crawfish Tail meat
1/4 Cup Flour
1 1/2 to 2 Cups Crawfish Stock
1/4 Cup Minced Garlic
2 Tbsp Fresh Thyme Leaves, chopped
2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp Hot Sauce (I like Crystal or Louisiana Gold)
1/2 Cup Green Onions, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp Italian Parsley, minced
3 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste
1 Tbsp fresh Lemon Juice
1 Recipe Creole Boiled Rice

Melt the butter in a large cast iron skillet, add the onions, bell pepper, celery, and 1 Tablespoon of the Creole seasoning, saute until translucent. Add the Crawfish tail meat, the remaining Creole seasoning and saute until the tails let off some of their liquid, cook for 3-5 minutes more. Add the flour, stirring constantly for about 3-5 minutes.

Add a small amount of the crawfish stock, stir well to form a paste, add the remaining stock gradually, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. You may need a little more stock, but the end result should be the consistency of a gravy, not too thick, not too thin.
Add the garlic, Thyme, Worcestershire, and hot sauce, a little salt, black pepper. Simmer for 20-30 minutes.
Add the green onions and parsley, simmer for 5-10 minutes more.

Stir in the 3 Tbsp butter, lemon juice, and adjust the seasonings to taste.

Serve over Creole Boiled Rice.

Serves 4 as an Appetizer or 2 as a large entree.

From Nola Cuisine

Related Posts:

Shrimp Etouffee Recipe
Crawfish Boil Recipe
Crawfish Stock Recipe
Live Louisiana Crawfish Recipe
Shrimp Stock Recipe
Shrimp Creole Recipe

Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun Recipes which provides links to all of the recipes featured on this site!

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