Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Gaspard's Cajun Potato Salad

This is a Real Cajun Cooking - Pure and Simple original recipe which makes 12 - 15 servings and takes less than an hour to prepare. Yummy!

Ingredients
Gaspard's Cajun Potato Salad

  • 5 lbs. Russet potatoes, boiled
  • 5 hard boiled eggs
  • 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 3 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup yellow mustard
  • 3 Tbs. dill relish
  • 1 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. paprika

Instructions

  1. peel, dice, boil and drain the potatoes then set aside
  2. boil, peel and finely chop eggs in a food chopper
  3. finely chop 1 medium white onion
  4. slice each stalk of celery in 4s (lengthwise) and finely chop
  5. chop green onions
  6. add chopped eggs, onions, bell pepper, celery, green onions, relish, mayo, mustard, cayenne pepper, salt and ground black pepper in a bowl and mix together thoroughly.
  7. in a larger bowl add everything together (except the paprika) then toss and mix well until all of the bits of potatoes are thoroughly coated. Try not to mash the potatoes in the process.
  8. level-off the salad and sprinkle paprika on top to add color
  9. set the salad in the refrigerator to cool before serving.
  10. makes 12 – 15 servings

Note: Do not use a blender to chopped your vegetables because it will cause your salad to lose the crunchiness. It is important to take your time to properly chop the onions, bell pepper and celery by hand to produce the perfect potato salad. The chopped pieces should be about the size of a pencil eraser. And, for a bit of extra color and eye-appeal you may want to add a few sprigs of parsley on top for good measure.

Enjoy! Ahheee!!


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Sunday, August 11, 2019

Smoked Beef Ribs




Ingredients:
  • beef ribs
  • coarse ground sea salt
  • course ground black pepper
  • one stick of butter
  • one good size onion, chopped
  • lemon juice (about one cup)
  • about two cups white vinegar
  • about 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • good quality lump charcoal (for pit method)

Instructions for basting sauce:

Using a large saucepan, melt one stick of butter over low heat.  Add 1 chopped onion, and saute in butter until soft.  Add lemon juice, vinegar, and Worcestershire. Let it simmer on low as long as your ribs are cooking.


Instructions (Pit Method):

This is the preferred method, but it takes more work.  It takes lots of practice to master the pit, but if you know what you are doing, this is not too difficult.  If you don't have a good heavy barbecue pit with a firebox, thermometer, and good quality oak lump charcoal (something like lump charcoal, you might as well use the oven method, described below.  The oven method still produces excellent results, but you won't get that smokey flavor that gives the ribs that extra je ne sais quoi.  If you don't know how to handle your pit, or if you use that garbage charcoal you get at the grocery store, you can ruin the ribs with creosote (black, bitter, and burnt).

Also, everyone with a barbecue pit has an opinion.  If you have a strong opinion, then you probably have your own recipe.  I'm going to describe the way I do it, and I have never had complaints or leftovers.

Start with cool beef ribs.  Turn the ribs upside down, remove the membrane to the best of your ability. Any excess fat can be trimmed.  Pat the ribs down with a handful of paper towels so that they are moist, but not wet.  Generously coat all sides of the ribs with coarse salt and pepper.  Let the ribs sit at room temperature on a cookie sheet until they cool down.  While the ribs are resting, you can begin to work on your fire.

Soak about 10 - 15 lumps of charcoal with lighter fluid, and let them sit for a few minutes.  Stack them in a pyramid in your firebox, then light them.  The flame will get high as the fluid burns off, but will quickly subside leaving your charcoal burning at the edges.  Open the air vent to allow plenty of air into the fire chamber.  Let the lumps get completely hot - they may flame up again, which is ok.  Let the second flame subside, then push the hot coals to the front of the firebox (the side of the firebox closest to the cooking chamber).  Now fill the rest of the firebox with lump charcoal, and close your vent and smokestack by 1/2.  Shut the lid on the firebox and on the cooking chamber to let it heat up.

What we are trying to produce here is a low and slow burn.  The fire should stay at the front of the box.  You push the unburned coals into the fire as necessary to keep the fire going and the temperature constant.

You want the heat in the cooking chamber to reach 250 degrees, and stabilize.  This gets easier the longer the fire is going because the iron in the pit heats up which helps regulate the temperature.  You want to adjust your vent and smokestack so that a good deal of smoke stays in the pit, but you are getting enough airflow through the pit to keep the fire going.

Once the heat has stabilized in the pit, place the ribs into the cooking chamber right side up, then close the lid.  Don't leave the lid open for too long or you will lose your heat.

Now start making your basting sauce.  You don't need to baste the ribs for about 45 minutes, so you have plenty of time.  I like to keep my basting sauce warm by leaving it on the warming tray above my firebox.

After about 45 minutes, open the lid.  Using a sauce mop, baste both sides of the ribs make being careful not to wash away the salt and pepper.  Turn the ribs over, and close the lid.  We will let this go for another 45 minutes before basting and turning again.  Cook this way for about 4 1/2 hours.  Finally, remove the ribs from the heat and let them rest on a clean cookie sheet covered loosely in foil for about 30 minutes.

I find that cooking with this method requires no finishing sauce.  The ribs are tasty, easy to eat, and the smoke-cured meat will keep for several days in a refrigerator if you happen to have leftovers.


Instructions (Oven Method):

Basically the exact same as above without the charcoal.  Bring your oven up to 250 degrees.  Put the ribs directly onto the rack in the center of the oven (you can spray the rack with pam first if you want).  If you have a convection oven great, but not necessary.  Put a cookie sheet on the bottom rack to catch any drippings.  I find the oven method does not require as much basting because the sealed oven keeps much of the moisture trapped inside.  Baste when you feel it is necessary, but don't go crazy or you will make a mess in your oven.  Cooking time is again, about 4 1/2 hours.  Once done, remove the ribs and let them rest for about 30 minutes.

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Sunday, August 04, 2019

Oyster Stew

Often times the easiest Oyster Stew recipes are the best. Here is one that is easy to prepare and taste delicious.

Ingredients

  • 3 dozen oysters
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1-quart milk (preheated)
  • 5 green onion tops, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped
  • 1 sprig parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. prepare a white roux with all-purpose flour and butter 
  2. add vegetables and sauté for a couple minutes on medium-high heat
  3. drain oysters and slowly add the oyster liquid to the pot
  4. reduce to a simmer and add preheated milk
  5. introduce the raw oysters and simmer until oyster edges start to curl
  6. finally, add salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce
Note: It's important to not "boil" the milk because it will curdle and ruin the stew.

Serve with croûtons or crackers.


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Saturday, April 13, 2019

Jacques Gaspard's Sliced Beef Roast Po-Boy Sandwiches (video)

This Sliced Beef Roast Po-Boy Sandwich recipe just could become a favorite for your holiday guests. It's a lot like the N'awlin's style po-boys... 'cept much betta!

A 4 lb. beef rump roast can easily go from very tough to fall-apart tender in just a few hours using my simple two-stage method of cooking as outlined below.

But first, here's a little secret. If you take particular notice of the title to this post you will see that part of it reads "Sliced Beef Roast Po-Boy Sandwiches" and not "Sliced Roast Beef Po-Boy Sandwiches". That's because there is an easier way of cooking the beef roast other than using the conventional dry-heat method of roasting to create these wonderfully delicious sandwiches.

So, true to our pledge of bringing you great foods without all the fuss and muss, read on as I demonstrate how simple it is to create great tasting beef sandwiches which are certain to impress even the more finicky taste buds around your home.

Ingredients

  • water
  • 4 lb. trimmed beef rump roast
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 packets of Lipton's Beefy Onion Soup Mix
  • 4 beef bouillon cubes
  • 3 Tbs. garlic powder
  • 3 Tbs. onion powder
  • 5 Tbs. black ground pepper
  • 1 Tbs. cayenne pepper
  • 3 Tbs. Kitchen Bouquet
  • 1 loaf of garlic French bread, sliced lengthwise
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • shredded lettuce
  • vine ripened tomatoes, sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions


Part I - Boiling a Beef Rump Roast

Place the rump roast in a boiling pot and add just enough water to cover the meat. Except for the salt and black pepper, add all of the dry seasonings to the water including the 4 bouillon cubes and 1 packet of Lipton's  Beefy Onion Soup mix.

On medium-high heat bring the beef roast to a boil and continue boiling for 1 and 1/2 hours. Turn the roast over a couple times during the boiling process. Next, remove the roast from the liquid and set aside to cool before slicing. Continue boiling the liquid until the virgin roux is added.

After the roast has cooled, cut across the grain into 1/4" slices and set aside until you are ready to add everything to the slow-cooker.

Virgin Roux Gravy (uncooked all-purpose flour, water and seasonings)

Add 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour in a bowl, the remaining packet of Lipton's Beefy Onion Soup mix and 4 Tbs. of fresh ground black pepper and salt (I prefer the coarsely ground black pepper for the stronger flavor). Mix well and begin slowly adding cold water (a little at the time) to make a thick slurry -- about 2 cups. This slurry will be added to the boiling liquid to create a thick and savory gravy which will compliment the flavor of the sliced beef when you are putting the final touches to your po-boy sandwich.

The gravy, as you will see, will also be added to the slow cooker and used to infuse more flavor into the beef slices during the final stage of the cooking process. Any remaining gravy can be stored in the freezer for later use.

Next, pour a portion of the gravy into the bottom of your slow-cooker then add the first layer of sliced beef followed by more gravy. Continue this until all of the beef slices and gravy have been added to the pot.

Finally, turn your slow-cooker on to your preferred setting: high for about an hour or so... or, on low for about 3 hours.

Part II -- Building the Sandwich (measure once cut thrice)


I prefer to use garlic sour dough French bread for my po-boy sandwiches because it adds a richer flavor to the meal. Cut your French loaf in half horizontally, paint a generous amount of liquid butter onto both halves, sprinkle onion powder then oven-toast (face up) until the edges of the loaves are a golden-brown color -- just a couple minutes.

Next, apply mayo and sprinkle some fresh black ground pepper to both halves. After that apply a gravy-soaked layer of tender sliced beef onto one half-loaf followed by a layer of fresh shredded lettuce and a layer of fresh sliced beef-steak tomatoes. (If you like a sloppy po-boy sandwich, now would be a good time to pour some of the peppery gravy on top).

Finally, put the cap on your po-boy and cut the sandwich diagonally into 4 equal parts and serve. Hope you enjoy your sandwich! Ahheee!!
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Tuesday, April 02, 2019

Baked Flounder with Crab Stuffing

Ingredients

  • 2 one pound flounders
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbs. bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup crab meat
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 Tbs. salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp parsley, chopped
  • 1 egg
Instructions
    Sauté onions, garlic and bell pepper in butter until tender. Add crab meat and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Let cool for 10 minutes. Add bread crumbs, salt, pepper, parsley and egg. Mix well. Stuff into cavity of flounder. Place in baking dish and bake 30 minutes at 375°F. Mmmm--c'est bon!
    KT

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