Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Sneauxday Gumbeaux

Nothing says "sneauxday" in North Georgia like a pot of South Louisiana's finest.  Warm, comforting and just a touch spicy.


In 5 gallon pot, combine one whole plump chicken and vegetables you have around the house -- whole garlic cloves, an onion, celery stalks and leaves, leeks and more.  Add a sprig of rosemary and a few peppercorns (and don't forget the bay leaves) and enough water to cover.  Simmer for approximately two hours.

Let chicken cool, then debone and set aside.

Put cooled stock in the fridge overnight.  The next day you scan scoop off any fat and bring back to warm on the stove.


In a dutch oven heat equal parts vegetable oil and all purpose flower (about 1/2 cup each).  Stir over medium low heat until it turns the color of dark peanut butter.  (Be careful... the slightest burn and you'll have to start over).  Could take up to half an hour.


To the roux add 3 stalks chopped celery, one large onion and one large green pepper.  Saute until the vegetables begin to wilt.  Add minced garlic and stir for another minute.

Begin adding ladles of the warm stock until it reaches a little more than halfway up the pan.  Cook for 30-60 minutes on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.

Add chicken -- and whatever other meats or seafood you like.  I prefer Cajun sausage and shrimp.

Let simmer as long as it can.  Add salt, pepper, Tony Chachere's and hot sauce to taste.

Serve over warm rice.  Voila.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

I'm Italian (but for an accident of geography)

My (almost) Italian roots


I learned not long ago that my great grandmother grew up in a part of Croatia that's OH SO CLOSE to the Italian border.  So it finally all makes sense...why I'm incredibly fond of Italy and Italian food.  I was raised on it, and -- other than Cajun/Creole -- it's my favorite cuisine to cook today.

So what else to do on a Saturday of working around the house than make a giant pot of meatballs and gravy.  (Yes... I said "gravy.")  Here's how I did it.

1 large vidalia onion
2 carrots, peeled
5 cloves garlic, crushed
Pinch of red pepper flakes
3 cans crushed tomatoes
1 parmasan rind (I had it left over)
3/4 cup grated romano
10 fresh basil leaves (or 1 T dry basil)
Salt and pepper to taste

Saute the finely chopped onion and carrots in olive oil.  I always use my favorite dutch oven, but any heavy bottomed pot will do.  When the onions are translucent, add the chopped garlic and red pepper flakes.  Cook one minute, being careful not to let the garlic burn.  Add the tomatoes and cheese.  Turn the heat to low and simmer as long as you can stand to let the amazing smell waft through your house.  About 20 minutes before serving add the chopped basil.

2 lbs ground chuck
1 lb ground pork
2 eggs
1 carrot
1 stalk celery
1/2 vidalia onion
1/4 cup milk
2 cups bread crumbs (preferably those you've made yourself from day old bread)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 T salt
2 T black pepper

In a large bowl, make a panade of the finely chopped or shredded carrot, celery and onion, plus the milk, bread crumbs, garlic, salt, pepper and eggs.  Mix thoroughly.  Add the meat and work gently until thoroughly combined -- being careful not to over mix.  Cover and let sit in the refrigerator for a couple of hours.  Remove, make into individual meatballs (I prefer approximately 2" diameters, but you can make any size you prefer).  Bake in a 350 degree oven -- preferably on a rack that allows the fat to drip away -- for about 20 minutes.  Add to meatballs to the sauce and cook at least 2 hours.

Make your favorite pasta and enjoy!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tuesdays are great for Red Beans and Rice, too

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Getting back on track

So Chef Alexis gave me untold grief last night for not posting on my blog more often.  "What's wrong with once a year?" I asked.

To remedy the situation, and in honor of my mother's back surgery tomorrow, I made lasagna with spicy sausage.  Can't wait to dig in.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Pot #4 of Chicken Stock

Getting ready for tomorrow night's cajun/creole feast with yet another pot of homemade chicken stock.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

This weekend's dinners...aka "what got into ME?"

Two days of the weekend.  Two sets of friends over for a meal.

On Saturday, it was Caribbean night...with lime chicken, black beans and rice, fried corn, avocado and salsa.

Sunday we did Shrimp Creole redux.  And I have to think it was the best ever.  Probably because we got the roux right.  And the presentation.  It was very nice.  (Thank you Dino)