Real Cajun Cooking lets you choose from hundreds of authentic Cajun recipes. Learn to easily prepare and cook original Cajun-style family meals with help from south Louisiana's Cajun cook and connoisseur, Jacques Gaspard, who's been preparing great Cajun meals for several decades. Create the best gumbos, seafood, jambalaya, stews,, salads and deserts – the way they were originally prepared. Besides great original recipes, you will discover a hodgepodge of stories, recordings, music, videos and humorous anecdotes to entertain. So enjoy! Don't forget to tell all of your family and friends about Real Cajun Cooking. They will thank you for it.

Friday, December 30, 2011

20 Most Viewed Real Cajun Cooking Recipes of 2011

Back in 2009 Real Cajun Cooking--Pure and Simple published a list of the 10 most viewed recipes on its site. [Link]

It has been a couple years since the list has been updated.

In those last couple years Real Cajun Cooking has nearly doubled its content, recipe selection and  readership, so this year we've decided to expand the list to the top 20 most viewed recipes.

We sincerely hope you will keep coming back for more tantalizing Cajun recipes as we continue to expand our list in the coming new year. Don't forget to tell your friends about us.

Updated List for 2011

  1. How to Make a Gumbo Roux
  2. How to Cook Garfish
  3. How to Make Boudain
  4. Cajun Hog's Head Cheese
  5. Boudain (boudin) Balls
  6. Chicken Stew
  7. Shrimp and Eggplant Casserole
  8. Easy Microwave Gumbo Roux
  9. Fried Catfish Nuggets
  10. Alligator Stew
  11. Courtbouillon (fish soup)
  12. Chicken Fricassee
  13. DIY Cajun Seasoning
  14. Chicken-Shrimp-Okra Gumbo
  15. Shrimp Mold
  16. Fish Patties
  17. Shrimp Etouffee (A-2-Fay)
  18. Chicken Gumbo
  19. Cajun Jambalaya
  20. Cajun Black-eyed Peas and Cabbage

Of course, there are many more delicious and original Cajun recipes than merely the 20 most popular. Check 'em out.

From all of us here at Real Cajun Cooking--Pure and Simple, we would like to wish you and yours a great and wonderful 2012 New Year!

Bon appetite!
KT Signature Icon

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Batter Fried Boiled Oysters

Batter Fried Boiled Oysters can become tricky to prepare if you don't know what to do with them first. That's because boiled oysters from a can are already fully cooked and tend to break apart easily when mishandled. Here's a hint: freeze the canned oysters before frying them. I will show you how. They handle much better and won't fall apart.

If you are wanting to prepare a Cajun-style oyster po-boy sandwich, there are usually enough of them in an 8 oz. can to make one up. Just substitute them for the large fresh one's which are called for in our Lafayette Oysters PO-Boy recipe. You will be surprised to discover how similar the 2 types of sandwiches rate in tastes and texture.

Ingredients

  • 1 (8 oz.) can Polar oysters, drained (reserve liquid) 
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal 
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tsp. baking powder 
  • 1/2 tsp. salt 
  • pinch of baking soda 
  • oil 
  • season to taste

    Preparing the wet batter for dipping 

      1. combine oyster liquid, 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, seasonings, baking powder, salt and baking soda 
      2. whisk together well until all the lumps are removed 
      3. the batter should have a smooth pouring consistency (a small amount of water can be added if needed) 
      PREPARING THE DRY INGREDIENTS FOR DREDGING
      1. combine the yellow cornmeal and 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour 
      2. mix the two well to allow for an even distribution around the coated oysters
      Instructions
        1. drain oysters and reserve liquid for the batter 
        2. spread oysters out on a non-stick cookie sheet 
        3. make sure the oysters do not touch each other 
        4. freeze them for 30 minutes 
        5. thoroughly coat the frozen oysters in the liquid batter 
        6. next, dredge the oysters in the dry cornmeal and flour mixture 
        7. skillet fry at 365 degrees for about a minute on each side 
        8. remove oysters from hot oil when they reach a golden brown color 
        9. spread fried oysters on a paper towel to absorb excess oil 

        Makes 2 - 4 servings

        Note

        As previously mentioned, these bite-size morsels are already fully cooked and they tend to easily break apart when not handled properly. By using a little care, we can gently spread them out on a non-stick cookie sheet before freezing.

        It doesn't take much oil to fry them up either-about 1/2 inch in a medium size skillet. Remember, at this point we are mainly concerned with frying the batter that coats the oysters.

        I like to season my fried oysters with a teaspoon of Tony Chacheres's Original Creole seasoning and a half teaspoon of Old Bay seasoning which is added to the liquid batter (Bowl 1).

        The seasonings come together to bring about the familiar and unmistakable flavors and ambiance of Cajun and Creole cuisine.

        Another choice you may want to consider when it comes to seasoning is our popular DIY Cajun Seasoning recipe, which we also have posted on this site. It's easy to make and you probably already have most of the ingredients in your spice rack.

        Like most other folks who I know that love oysters, I would like to have fresh 'out of the shell' oysters rather than boiled ones out of a can. But, when they are hard to find, we sometimes have to improvise a little. Try these Batter Fried Boiled Oysters when you get an opportunity. I bet you will love 'em as much as I do.

        Bon appetit!
        Signature Icon

        Tuesday, December 27, 2011

        Maque Choux

        Ingredients

        • 1 stick butter
        • 15 ears tender fresh corn
        • 1 large onion, chopped
        • 1 bell pepper, chopped
        • 1 can whole tomatoes
        • (or 2 fresh tomatoes diced)
        • 1 clove garlic, minced
        • 1 cup milk
        • salt and pepper to taste

          Instructions

            1. cut corn off cob and scrape cob to remove all the juice
            2. in a Dutch oven combine 1 stick butter, onion, bell pepper and garlic
            3. sauté until tender
            4. add corn and tomatoes
            5. season to taste
            6. cook over medium heat for 1 hour, stirring constantly
            7. add a little milk from time to time
            8. keep mixture soft to avoid sticking
            9. serves 5 to 6

            Note: To make chicken Maque Choux, cut chicken into bite size pieces and fry until brown and add to the Maque Choux. Cook 10 minutes.


            Signature Icon

            Saturday, December 24, 2011

            Cajun Cook | Top 10 Herbs and Spices in My Cajun Kitchen | Keeping it Simple

            Like me, the Cajun cooks that I personally know have their own repertoire of herbs and spices to compliment their particular style of cooking. Thus, the use of some of the more popular herbs and spices will differ slightly from one cook to the next, while the unique and distinctive flavors and tastes of Cajun and Creole cuisine steadfastly remains.

            For example, the well known trinity of Cajun vegetables which have become the hallmark ingredients of many southern meals--especially throughout the Acadiana Parishes and around New Orleans--are onions, celery and bell pepper. These three top the list.

            The following is a list of the 10 most used herbs and spices in my kitchen. I use them to cook anything and everything Cajun--from Alligator Stew to Zesty Cajun Onion Rings.


            Top 10 Herbs and Spices in My Cajun Kitchen

            Cajun Trinity, Etc.
            1. onions
            2. bell pepper
            3. celery
            4. garlic
            5. basil
            6. parsley
            7. oregano
            8. bay leaves
            9. ground red pepper
            10. ground black pepper
              As mentioned earlier, the use of many of these popular herbs and spices will differ slightly from one Cajun cook to the next. And there are a few other herbs I've left off of my list because I either don't like the taste, or I have found other ways to achieve like results.

              To give you an example, some Cajun and Creole cooks like to sprinkle a powder called file' in gumbo. It is made from the dried leaves of the sassafras tree and is used mainly as a thickening agent. I personally don't care much for the taste.

              I prefer to use other plants products to thicken my gumbos and stews. A couple which come to mind are okra and all-purpose wheat flour which I use to make my roux. See: Easy Microwave Gumbo Roux | No Oil. No Fuss. No Mess

              File', I've noticed, is used more by Creoles than by Cajuns. Word has it that this ancient culinary tip (using ground-up sassafras leaves to thicken stews) was passed down to the early settlers by indigenous natives--the Choctaw I think?

              Please look around our site. You will discover tons of original Cajun recipes which use many of the above 10 herbs and spices.

              Enjoy! Please come back and visit us soon.


              Signature Icon

              Thursday, December 22, 2011

              Coffee and Chicory | Café du Monde | Flavors of New Orleans

              Chicory

              Chicory is not a native North American herb. It is a native of Europe. It was brought to the United States from the European colonists who settled here. It is safe to assume the original Acadian settlers of Nova Scotia, one of the three Canadian Maritime Provinces, had brought some with them from Europe, too.

              Consequently, after the French Acadians were dispersed by the British Empire (Le Grande Derangement~1755–1763), it is very likely the prized 'chicory' herb followed them as well during resettlement in south Louisiana.

              Every time I visit Jackson Square in New Orleans, (after taking a tour of the outdoor artist's displays around the square), I'll amble across the way to 800 Decatur Street and patronize one of the world's most famous coffee houses, Café du Monde, for a cup of hot and bold chicory coffee, along with a trio of French beignets heavily sprinkled with powdered sugar on top. The combination comes together like a marriage made in heaven which brings about an almost forbidden pleasure. One that seems to give me an extra burst of energy and a new zest for life. It could be the caffeine, sugar and chicory that's performing their magic?  

              Chicory Coffee & Beignets
              I had a serving this morning, which I had to prepare myself since I now live about 500 miles away from the Mississippi River banks of downtown New Orleans.

              Chicory has not only become a great coffee additive and substitute, it rings true as a natural home remedy for an impressive list of ailments. It is used as an anti-inflammatory, mild diuretic, stomach tonic, for liver complaints, and rheumatism (to name just a few).

              Ranchers in New Zealand plant chicory as feedstock for their animals.

              The active ingredient in chicory acts as a natural deterrent to many internal parasites in cattle and sheep. Letting the animals graze on chicory keeps them healthy and helps to defray some of the expenses involved in treating infestation of the animals manually. So, as you can see, chicory has many more benefits than merely embellishing our morning cups of java.

              Café du Monde

              Oh how sweet it is! To operate one of the most successful food establishments in the world, that is... and whose main trademark is to serve chicory coffee and Louisiana doughnuts without the holes (beignets)... and to do so right smack dab in the middle of the busiest tourist spot in New Orleans--the French Quarter. I suppose location has something to do with their success also, but it is such a solid business that not even the most disastrous hurricane in U.S. history could manage to uproot it.

              Politicians could learn a valuable lesson about economics by following the business model for this coffee shop, I think.

              Café du Monde opened its doors back in 1861 during the American Civil War. The shop stays open year-round 24/7, taking only Christmas Day off.

              Hurricane Katrina compelled the managers of Cafe du Monde to close shop for a few days. It closed at midnight on August 27, 2005 and reopened on October 19, 2005, suffering only minor damages.

              Below is a night time pic of the famous N'awlins coffee house and a map of its location below it.

              Café du Monde at Night

              If you would like to experience the taste of coffee with chicory (New Orleans style), you can order direct from New Orleans's Famous French Market. The French Roast blend is bold, and the 'Chicory and Coffee' is the boldest. Either one will bring pleasure to your palate if you are a serious coffee drinker. Take advantage of their 2 - 3 day air shipping and you will have your order delivered at your front door before you can say "ahheee--très bon !"

              Brewing Directions

              Coffee and Chicory (boldest)


              Use 1/2 to 3/4 level tablespoon of Coffee and Chicory for each 6 oz. of water. Adjust the amount of Coffee and Chicory to your preferred strength.










              French Roast (bold)




              Use 1 1/2 level tablespoons for each 6 oz. of water. Adjust the amount of coffee to your preferred strength.










              The Flavor of New Orleans

              I would also like to commend French Market Coffee and thank them for their generous donations and charitable partnership with renowned local artist Terrance Osborne. 

              Terrance created a special piece called “The Flavor of New Orleans" and is selling prints of the piece to benefit the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts. Order Here.

              NOCCA helps students pursue many diverse passions of the arts, and they are helping NOCCA continue its mission.

              Have a nice day and I hope you enjoy your coffee and chicory as much as I do. Ahheee!!
              KT Signature Icon

              Monday, December 05, 2011

              What's Lurking In Your Olive Oil? | Fox News

              The United States recently became the third largest olive-oil consuming nation in the world, and just overtook Greece -- a country where the people of Crete alone consume 26 gallons of olive oil per person per year, says Tom Mueller, author of the investigative olive oil missive five years in the making Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil (W.W. Norton, Dec. 2011).

              “When producers try to make olive oil at a low cost with a high profit, everybody loses,” says Mueller. “People expect to get healthy stuff, and in fact they might be getting rancid, old oil. It’s not only not good—it’s bad.”
              Signature Icon

              Saturday, December 03, 2011

              Homemade Cajun Chicken Pot Pie

              This delicious chicken pot pie is a big hit in my house, especially on cold winter nights.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!


              Ingredients
              • 1 box pre-made refrigerated pie crust (2 pieces)
              • 1/2 stick butter
              • 1/2 cup chopped onion
              • 2 cloves chopped garlic
              • 1/2 cup chopped celery
              • 1/2 cup chopped carrot
              • 1 large yellow potato, peeled and cubed
              • 1/2 cup green peas
              • 1/2 cup corn
              • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
              • 1/2 tsp black pepper
              • 1/2 tsp salt
              • 2 cups chicken broth
              • 2 1/2 cups chicken breast, chopped into bite-size pieces
                  
                Instructions

                Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. The pre-made refrigerated pie crust should come in two pieces, one for the bottom of the pie, and one for the top. Drape one of the crust pieces over a nine-inch pie pan and gently press into the pan, making sure the entire pan is covered. Use a paring knife to trim any crust that extends beyond the lip of the pan.

                Microwave cubed potato for 3 minutes on high, and set aside.

                In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and sauté until onions are translucent. Add the chicken and stir-fry until browned. Add the flour, continuing to stir-fry until all of the chicken and vegetables are well-coated and the flour is beginning to brown. Stir in the chicken broth a little at a time making sure all of the flour gets dissolved into the broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer. Add the salt, pepper, potato, peas, and corn. Simmer for a few minutes to reduce the liquid. The mixture should be quite thick, and not soupy.

                Spoon the mixture into the pie.  Do not over-fill.

                Drape the other half of the pie crust over the pie. Using a dinner fork, press the tines into the edge of the pie, going all around the pan until the top crust is sealed to the bottom crust. Using your paring knife, trim off any crust that extends beyond the lip of the pan. Cut a couple of slits into the top of the pie.

                Bake for about 40 minutes, or until crust is golden brown. About halfway through baking, you can cover the crust edge with foil to keep it from over-browning.

                Let the pie rest for about 5 minutes before serving.

                Note: If you have extra material after filling the pie crust, don't despair! You can easily freeze it for later use in a delicious chowder. Just re-heat, and add chicken broth until you get the right consistency, then add chopped green onion just before serving.

                Enjoy!

                Signature Icon

                Saturday, November 19, 2011

                Oh Deer! | Adventures of a Big Game Hunter | Texarkana Hunting Club

                It was my second year cooking for the Texarkana Hunting Club. The club's deer lease encompasses several hundred acres of wooded ridges and bottom lands and extends partially south of and adjacent to Hwy 287 in Nevada County, Arkansas. (between Hope and Camden)

                I looked forward to being the camp cook again that particular hunting season. Maybe it was because I added just enough spice and Cajun seasoning to the foods I prepared the year before that prompted a re-invitation to be their camp cook again.

                The challenge I faced that year was to prepare hearty dishes from the game bagged on the hunting lease...which was mainly deer and wild pigs. This challenge was met head-on and no one went hungry on my watch.

                I arrived at the deer camp around noon on a Friday. My time that afternoon was spent getting settled-in at the bunk house, taking inventory of the galley provisions, and getting reacquainted with friends I had met at the camp the previous year.

                All afternoon the hunters trickled in at the camp to set up for the following opening day. One of the hunter's age was 84, but if I had to guess the average overall age of the members, it would be around fifty.

                I had to awaken early enough the next morning to prepare breakfast for everyone; early enough so that the hunters could eat a hearty meal and still have enough time to take positions at their respective blinds or tree stands.

                This meant getting up at 4 o'clock every morning. In most cases I could have everything prepared within one to one and one half hours. After all the hunters left, I would clean the galley and go back to the bunk house to get a couple more hours sleep before preparing the afternoon meals.

                It was Saturday, November 11, 2006. It was also Veteran's Day.
                Everything progressed smoothly that first morning. I had the hunters in and out in less than a couple hours before ambling back to my bunk house to listen to the morning news and eventually get some more shut-eye. I had a special treat in mind to cook-up for the sportsmen for our Veteran's Day supper so I would need lots of rest.
                That afternoon, while in the galley peeling potatoes, I heard a small commotion outside the building. I went outside to check it out and I noticed a couple hunters. They had just arrived at the camp. I didn't recognize them from the year before so I naturally assumed they were invited guests.

                I took particular notice of the less tall of the two hunters because of the way he interacted with the other hunters, most of whom he had never met before.

                He was gregarious to say the least. Although he was of a smaller stature, he strutted around like he was ten feet tall, in full hunting regalia, (just shy of a Gillie suit), and exuded more self-confidence than a rogue porcupine.

                He could tell a story and spin a yarn that would make Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn green with envy. His name was Gage Paul Wylie. He liked and wanted to be called Gage Paul by the other hunters in the group. He was proud of his name.

                That evening I prepared a hearty meal for the hunters. The main course consisted of chicken fried venison back strap with mash potatoes and gravy. I noticed Gage Paul tearing into his fair share. He acted like he needed to store as much energy as he possibly could in preparation for the following day's hunt.

                While the other hunters gathered around to talk about old times and drink beer, I noticed that Gage Paul wasn't particularly interested and made his way back to his travel trailer to get some early rest, I supposed.

                It wasn't long after that when I also made my way to the bunk house to get some shut-eye of my own. It was tough enough under normal circumstances for the cook to get some sleep, let alone jaw boning with a group of hunters who had another year's worth of tall tales, light beer and football under their hats.

                I awakened at 4 PM the next morning to prepare breakfast. (scrambled eggs, bacon, biscuits and gravy). Everyone was in and out in about one hour.
                "Doing good!" I thought to myself.
                I cleaned up the galley and went back to bed and before long I was getting some peaceful rest. There was no one around... just pure silence... the perfect setting for peaceful sleep.

                I don't remember what I was dreaming about that particular morning, but it wasn't about tall tales, football or bagging deer.

                Suddenly! Out of the peaceful silence and sweet dreams, I heard this voice. It kept repeating itself and getting closer and getting louder.

                "I killed two!"

                I heard it again. "I killed two!"

                I remember jumping up from the lower bunk, where I slept, and nearly knocking myself out when my head hit the top bunk. I couldn't find my glasses. (not good for a near-sighted cook)
                I bent over and closely examined the alarm clock on the bed stand and it said 8:30. It was still dark in the bunk house.

                At that point I didn't know if it was in the A.M. or the P.M.-- I was totally confused.

                Don't laugh. You should try thinking strait when it's dark and you can't see in the first place... and with a knot on the head that you feel is slowly growing by the minute.

                I found my specs and finally figured out that it was still morning. I figured I got almost exactly one and a half hours of sleep. Imagine that!

                I slipped on my overalls and made my way to the door to see what all the excitement was about. As soon as I opened the door there he was--Gage Paul Wylie.

                "I killed two!", he shouted; "just fifteen minutes apart!", he added.

                There he was... Gage Paul Wylie... a bit loquacious, in my opinion, and now a whole lot on the braggart side.

                He touted his weapon of choice -- a 243 rifle like a gallant warrior after his first exhausting battle with the enemy.

                So, Gage Paul bagged two whitetail deer in fifteen minutes on the first day. Big deal! Right?

                For Gage Paul it was a big deal. It was a big deal because the sharp, self-confident, nonchalant, keen eyed whitetail deer hunter was only 9 years old.

                As a well known radio commentator loves to conclude: "now you know the rest of the story." But, not quite.

                When I was composing this story I couldn't help but think that perhaps there were other nine year old hunters, like Gage Paul, who bagged two deer in just fifteen minutes; that perhaps there were other nine year old hunters who have a good story to tell.

                But, the amazing thing about this story is that on that faithful morning in November of 2006, a day which I will always remember, was the day when Gage Paul Wylie participated in his very first deer hunt.

                Nine year old Gage Paul Wylie of Cabot, Arkansas stole the show that day as he out shined, probably for several more years to come, all of the other deer hunters in the hunting club.

                He had been accompanied by his grandfather, Roy. As Gage Paul repeated his story to the other hunters who trickled in that afternoon, one of the older hunters asked, "Gage Paul, how many times do think you need to tell that story?"

                Gage Paul responded by saying, "As many times as it takes. I just wanted you all to know that you may have won the battle, but my papaw and me...we won the war."

                Check this out: Deer Hunting Secrets Exposed
                Signature Icon

                Friday, November 18, 2011

                Simple Cajun Bread Pudding | When Grandma Ruled the Kitchen

                Thanksgiving dinners with good old-fashion bread pudding was always a favorite of mine.

                Homemade bread pudding became a welcomed annual tradition at our home. Besides the roasted turkey, the fabulous Cajun dirty rice, giblet gravy, and other complementary side dishes to die for, when it came time for desert, ma's bread pudding always took center stage at the conclusion of the feast.

                Simple to make, this tasty bread pudding can tame the cravings of even the most ardent sweet-tooth monsters at your next dinner party. 


                Ingredients

                • 4 cups regular milk
                • 8 slices stale bread
                • 4 eggs, separated
                • 1 can evaporated milk
                • 1 1/2 cups sugar
                • 1 tsp vanilla
                • 1 tsp cinnamon
                • 4 Tbs. sugar (to be added later)
                    
                  Instructions

                  1. heat milk, pour over bread and mash. 
                  2. add evaporated milk, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla, cinamon and mix well. 
                  3. bake uncovered in buttered pan at 375°F. for approx. 1 hour.
                  4. beat egg whites until very stiff. 
                  5. add 4 Tbs. sugar and beat until dissolved. 
                  6. pour over pudding. 
                  7. return to oven and brown at 350°F.
                  Note: If you are looking for a great rum sauce to go along with this delicious bread pudding check out this recipe: Rum Sauce

                  You may also be interested in a new way of dieting. Click Here!
                    Bon Appetite!
                    KT


                    Signature Icon

                    Thursday, November 17, 2011

                    How to Brown Meat and Make Dark Gravy | The Maillard Reaction

                    310°F (or higher) is the temperature which is required for meats like beef and poultry, among others, to begin browning. It is referred to, in culinary jargon, as the Maillard reaction (pronounced 'my-YARD').

                    When this reaction occurs it is advisable to keep a close-eye on the meat you are browning, turning it over occasionally until all sides are done. 

                    Often times, after the browning is complete, you will notice what looks like burned residue stuck on the bottom of the pot or skillet. We Cajuns refer to that as "gratin". It is the main ingredient that is used to make a savory dark gravy to serve with rice, mashed potatoes, cornbread, biscuits, so on.

                    Tip: The best way to dissolve the crusty gratin at the bottom of a pot or skillet is to keep the heat on and add a few ice cubes and stir them around a bit.

                    The crusty residue will begin to dissolve quite easily. Keep adding 1 ice cube at the time until all of it is dissolved. Turn off the heat and pour the savory broth in a sauce pan, add a couple teaspoons of all-purpose flour or cornstarch, some DIY Cajun seasoning, cook on medium heat until it thickens ( a minute or so) and voila! You just made yourself a dark gravy -- Cajun style. Some of us may like to add a few drops of Kitchen Bouquet to make the gravy appear even darker.

                    I hope this helps.

                    Bon Appetit!
                    KT

                    Signature Icon

                    Monday, November 07, 2011

                    Letters to the Editor | Canola Oil Versus Animal Fats (Lard)

                    My paternal grandparents raised me on a small farm down in Lafayette Parish, Louisiana. They were born in the late 1800s, and they all lived to ripe old ages. I am talking about into their 80s, 90s, and their parents lived to grand old ages, too. My great great grandmother was a centenarian who lived 104 years. They ALL cooked with animal fats.

                    Modern day cooking oils had not yet hit the grocery stores and supermarkets when I was a kid growing up. We got our oils from hogs (lard), chickens, and other animals on our farm. It is what we used to cook with in our home. Foods cooked with animal fats created better tasting meals than today's Canola or soy oil.

                    There are occasions when I get in the mood to cook-up a batch of some good ol' homemade cat-head biscuits using fresh bacon grease that's been cooled down in the freezer a few minutes and used as shortening. I would then cut-in the cooled solid fat (not yet frozen) along with a couple cups of self-rising flour and a cup of fresh milk and bake it on high for just a few minutes and look out!

                    Seems like everyone wants seconds when I serve them piping hot. That's how good they tasted. Those were indeed the good ol' days--the days when you might could live to be a hundred and four.

                    I prefer using animal fats over processed cooking oils to cook with whenever the occasion presents itself. Making Cajun sausages, pork and chicken boudin, cracklings, frying turkeys, baking biscuits are but a few examples of the occasions when I like to use animal fats and oils.

                    In my opinion, animals are much better at producing safer fats (assuming they have not been genetically modified), than today's mechanized processes and so-called modern technological advances.

                    The giant corporations spend lots of advertising dollars to paint pretty pictures and feed us piles of BS on how "safe" it is to use their products just to get us to try it. Once the products become branded and established in the market-place, they then continue to profit by slowly poisoning our bodies every time we purchase another bottle of good ol' supermarket vegetable oil.

                    While the mega-producers of the one-size-fits-all products, like Canola, which can be used as industrial lubricants, bio-diesel fuels, insecticides and cooking oils (to name just a few) are busy paying-off the right agencies to get approval to sell us their unsafe products, we continue to fork over money to purchase their poisons anyway. It's absurd!

                    This is one reason, like my ancestors, that I lean toward the side of nature as often as possible. Mother Nature is a special blessing to all of us and we can freely use Her anytime.

                    There is a lot to be said, and the debate has just begun, about oils like Canola which can be used as an industrial lubricant, a bio-diesel fuel, cooking oil, or the main ingredients in insecticides (same oil, different applications).

                    Consuming food products with GMO is NOT the way to go. Why do you think the EU, and other importing countries, have stopped buying genetically modified foods from the U.S.?

                    I'll tell you why. Because they know the products are unsafe, unholy and are slowly killing consumers in the name of profit--just like tobacco companies. 'Nuff said.

                    Canola Oil in pesticides.  The Health Ranger reveals how the No. 1 ingredient in a pesticide product is actually canola oil, and describes the warnings on the product which include that you should never get the oil on your skin or clothing. Soybean oil is also discussed as a key ingredient in another pesticide product.

                    Below is an interesting article that I would like to share with you... just to give you a little something to think about?

                    From “Off The Grid News” – Better Ideas For Off The Grid Living

                    Signature Icon

                    Wednesday, November 02, 2011

                    Selective Bargaining | Work For Food Plan | Humor

                    If you cook Cajun food, don't laugh at this picture. It is an example of what could happen around your home when you are the only Cajun cook in town.





















                    He does look a little familiar. Lol! Ahheee!!
                    KT Signature Icon

                    Thursday, October 06, 2011

                    Cajun Cooking|Cast-iron Skillet Chicken and Sausage Fricassee Recipe

                    Chicken & Sausage Fricassee
                    In keeping with our "Pure and Simple" theme, here is a very delicious chicken recipe which feeds 4 adults. At today's food prices, the ingredients for this simple recipe cost just a tad under $7.00. That's not bad! By using a small amount of the rendered chicken fat, I was also able to kick-up the taste factor by several notches.

                    The 4 large chicken thighs (skins on) cost around $3.00; 1 lb. sausage $1.79; large onion $0.35; medium bell pepper $0.67; all-purpose flour $0.10; long grain rice $0.50; green onions $0.50; cooking oil (free); seasonings (negligible).  Total: $6.91

                    Ingredients

                    • 2 lbs. chicken thighs (skins on)
                    • 1 lb. sausage of your choice, cut-up into half-inch slices
                    • 1 large onion, finely chopped
                    • 1 bunch chopped green onions
                    • 1 medium bell pepper, chopped
                    • 1/3 cup of prepared roux
                    • 1 1/3 cup of water
                    • 1 Tbs. garlic powder
                    • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
                    • salt to taste

                    Instructions
                    1. remove skins from chicken thighs
                    2. place skins in a high heat microwavable bowl 
                    3. set temperature on microwave oven to high 
                    4. cook for around 8 minutes until most of the oil is extracted
                    5. add chicken oil (about 1/3 cup) into a medium cast-iron skillet
                    6. on medium-high heat brown thighs in chicken oil (5 minutes per side)
                    7. remove thighs and set aside until later
                    8. lower temperature of skillet to medium heat
                    9. sift in 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour into the hot chicken oil 
                    10. prepare a light brown color roux in the same skillet
                    11. add all of the remaining ingredients (except water)
                    12. allow to cook until vegetables become translucent (stirring occasionally)
                    13. next, transfer everything into a larger cast-iron pot
                    14. bring back to medium heat
                    15. add water, salt and seasonings
                    16. stir and blend everything well
                    17. add the browned chicken and sausage slices
                    18. continue cooking on medium heat until chicken becomes tender
                    19. flip thighs over a couple times during cooking
                    20. when done add chopped green onions
                    21. serve over a bed of white long-grain rice
                    Note: Check out one of my other recipes which has to do with chicken skins. It's called "Cacklin Cracklins"
                      Enjoy!
                      KT Signature Icon

                      Tuesday, October 04, 2011

                      The Song "I Can't Survive" | A Parody on Obama by Cooyon Duhon (Cajun Humor)

                      No matter how rough times may get with politics and the economy, a little levity on occasions is like hot chicken soup for the weary soul.

                      I stumbled on a humorous parody online which changes the words, but uses the melody, of Gloria Gaynor's hit song of the 70s: I Can Survive.

                      Presenting Cooyon Duhon and his song entitled "I Can't Survive!".  Get ready to bust a gut laughing! Enjoy!

                      Signature Icon

                      Friday, September 30, 2011

                      Sister Molly's Simple Garden Salad Mix

                      This delicious and easy to prepare toss salad was created by my older sister Molly who died several years ago in an automobile accident caused by a drunk driver. We all miss you sis.

                      Ingredients

                      • 1 head of iceberg lettuce
                      • 3 tomatoes
                      • 2 bunches green onions
                      • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
                      • 1/3 cup mayonnaise


                      Instructions

                      1. tear (do not cut) lettuce into pieces
                      2. slice tomatoes into wedges
                      3. chop the green onions
                      4. toss in a large bowl and mix well
                      5. add mayonnaise and garlic powder
                      6. re-toss salad and serve
                      7. salt and pepper to taste

                      Hope you like it. Bon Appetite!

                      Special Reminder: According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 33,808 people died in traffic crashes in 2009 in the United States (latest figures available), including an estimated 10,839 people who died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes. Drunk driving fatalities accounted for 32% of all traffic deaths last year, that is, on average someone is killed in an alcohol-impaired driving crash about every 50 minutes in the U.S. (Source: NHTSA/FARS, 2010)

                      Please. Don't drink and drive. Be safe and don't allow others to drink and drive. You could save a life.


                      KT Signature Icon

                      Wednesday, September 28, 2011

                      Cajun Cooking|Creamy Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes Recipe

                      Buttermilk and sour cream both contain lactic acids in greater amounts than other types of dairy and will produce mashed potatoes with a slightly tart flavor. In fact, lactic acid is responsible for the sour flavor of sourdough breads.

                      You have the option of substituting the sour cream in this recipe with reduced-fat cream cheese. It will produce a less tart and richer tasting product with roughly the same amount of calories.

                      Ingredients

                      • 2 1/2 lbs. hot boiled potatoes, skins off
                      • 1 cup buttermilk
                      • 4 Tbsp. butter
                      • 3 Tbsp. sour cream (or 4 Tbsp. low-fat cream cheese)
                      • 1 tsp. coarse Kosher salt
                      • 1 tsp. cracked black pepper

                      Instructions

                      1. drain and discard hot water from potatoes
                      2. while the potatoes are still hot add the butter, sour cream, salt and black pepper
                      3. mash and mix well until butter has melted
                      4. add buttermilk and mix again until a creamy texture is attained
                      5. makes 6 - 8 servings
                      Tip: Before boiling the potatoes cut them into smaller pieces to create more surface area. They will boil faster. Don't forget to add a pinch of salt to the water.

                      If you have any leftovers, here is a breakfast treat that you may want to try: Cajun Fried Mashed Potato Patties.

                      Bon Appetite!

                      KT Signature Icon

                      Monday, August 29, 2011

                      Dairy-free Homemade Bread Muffins

                      Some symptoms of lactose intolerance can include abdominal pain, bloating and other associated discomforts to the digestive system. (I stay away from dairy products for that reason.)

                      It doesn't mean we must sacrifice all the things we love to eat, however, just because they usually contain dairy products -- like homemade bread, for example.

                      There is something about the aroma and taste of fresh homemade bread muffins in the morning for breakfast that refreshes the soul. The hot steamy middle just begs to become slathered with our favorite jam or jelly, (or butter for those of us who aren't lactose intolerant).

                      This recipe was handed down to me several years ago by a dear friend and co-restauranteur, Ms. Marry Richard, who is now retired in blissful peace near the Gulf of Mexico in south Louisiana.

                      I baked a couple dozen of her bread muffins yesterday for a handful of visiting friends. I started serving around 2 P.M and by four they were all gone. Zilch. zero, nada -- not even one left over. That is inviting news to a cook.

                      Today, I'm going to share this easy to make bread recipe... and you don't even have to be intolerant to enjoy these delicious muffins.

                      Ingredients

                      4 cups self-rising flour
                      2 cups warm water
                      1 packet yeast
                      1/2 cup cooking oil
                      1 egg, well-beaten
                      1 Tbsp. sugar

                      Instructions

                      1. lightly coat the inside of your muffin pan with oil (I used bacon drippings which added more flavor to the bread muffins)
                      2. in a large mixing bowl add 2 cups of warm water and stir-in 1 packet of yeast
                      3. add the oil and beaten eggs and mix well
                      4. while stirring, slowly mix in the 4 cups of sifted self-rising flour and blend together thoroughly
                      5. place the mixing bowl and prepared dough in the refrigerator for 1 hour
                      6. remove from refrigerator and spoon the bread dough into the muffin tins (about 3/4 way up)
                      7. cook on high heat (450 degrees F.) for about 12 - 14 minutes or until the tops of the muffins begin to turn slightly brown
                      8. allow to cool down for a couple minutes then pop 'em out and serve.
                      Note: You might want to hide a couple of these muffins for your personal consumption before they disappear.

                      Enjoy!
                      KT



                      Signature Icon

                      Monday, August 15, 2011

                      Eating Cheap in Hard Times | 10 Delicious Low-cost Cajun Meals

                      Listed below are 10 gourmet-style Cajun recipes that can be prepared on the cheap during hard times without sacrificing flavor, taste and the piggy bank.

                      Long grain rice, dried beans, inexpensive meats, (hamburger, chicken, bacon), potatoes, onions, bell peppers, celery, butter, eggs, and a few basic spices make-up the majority of ingredients in these ten simple recipes.

                      During hard times, we must often cut back on some of the more expensive foods which we like, and have grown accustomed to, during the good times.

                      This is especially true if our recipes call for special meats (seafood, prime cuts of pork and beef, etc.), and exotic add-ins. But, it does not mean that we have to sacrifice flavor and taste when cooking gourmet-quality low-cost meals.

                      Spices are the first things which come to mind. Since I grow most of my own herbs indoors or outside on the patio, I have a constant stock on hand and that saves me money. When I must get spices from the store, I will usually wait until I see them on sale before I buy.

                      Most of the time, however, spices purchased from the grocer will cost, on average, about $3 to $5 for a small container of the dried stuff (at today's prices). Growing your own herbs makes a lot of sense (and cents). Fresh herbs will intensify the already delicious taste of these meals.

                      As you consider these KT (kitchen tested) recipes, you will notice that the costs to prepare these foods are relatively low, but the quality is deliciously high. Bon appetite!


                      10 Low-cost Cajun Meals

                      Breakfast Fried Rice (video)
                      Add cooked white rice, stir fry until hot. Stir cooked onion and bacon mixture back into the rice. Push the rice, bacon, and onion to the outside of the pan. Pour beaten eggs into the middle of the pan. ...
                      Chicken Gumbo (a good winter meal)
                      Ingredients | 1 cup all-purpose flour; 1 cup cooking oil; 1 (4 to 5) lb. chicken, cut into pieces; 1 cups onion, chopped; 1/2 cup celery, chopped; 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced; 1/2 cup green onions, chopped; 1/4 cup parsley, chopped; Water ...
                       Cajun Rice Dressing (a/k/a Dirty Rice)
                      Brown ground meat. Add onions, bell pepper and celery. Cook until tender. Add ½ cup water, onion soup mix and seasonings. Cook on medium heat for 15 minutes. Add mixture and green onion tops to cooked rice. Stir and mix well. ... 
                       Red Beans and Rice 
                      Ingredients | 1 lb. dry red kidney beans (large or small); 2 medium onions, chopped; 6 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped; 3 ribs celery, chopped; 1 cup chopped bell pepper; 2 tsp Colgin liquid smoke ... 
                       Hamburger, Cheese and Potato Casserole (video)
                      This meal is a kid-pleaser without a doubt. Not only very tasty, it is simple to prepare.
                       Jambalaya
                      Ingredients|1 large green bell pepper, chopped, 3 stalks celery, chopped, 2 large onions, chopped, 2 cloves garlic, minced, 1/2 cup green onion, chopped, 2 Tbsp sea salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 1/4 tsp red pepper, 1/2 cup oil, 2 cups long grain white rice...
                       Chicken Stew
                      Ingredients |1 four to five pound hen cut into pieces (never use fryer); 1/2 cup oil; 1/2 cup all-purpose four; 2 cups onions, chopped; 1/2 cup celery, chopped; 1/2 cup bell pepper, chopped; 2 cloves garlic, chopped; 2 cups water
                       Crock Pot Beef Stew
                      Ingredients 2 lbs. beef stew meat 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 4 Tbs butter 1 can beef broth (10.5 oz.) 1 can cream of mushroom soup (10.5 oz.) 1 cup onions, chopped 1/2 cup bell pepper, chopped 1/2 cup celery, chopped ... 
                      Cajun Hobo Dinner 
                      The reason I called this meal a Cajun Hobo Dinner is because I added the vegetable 'trinity' to the meal, i.e., onions, bell pepper and celery, as well as the other vegetables and seasonings outlined in the list below.  
                       Combo Salmon-Tuna-Potato Patties
                      This is a simple combo meal you can whip-up in just a few minutes. I use a combination of two kinds of canned fish and a couple boiled potatoes to make these yummy ...

                        Look around our site, you will find several more recipes for low-cost meals which may help to get you through rough times. Bon Appetit! 

                        KT Signature Icon

                        Tuesday, July 19, 2011

                        St. Florian's Fire--Stewed Pears and Habenero Pepper Preserves

                        St. Florian is the patron saint of putting out fires. He organized firefighting brigades for that purpose around (250 - 304 C.E.), in Rome, where he was later killed for his Christian beliefs...learn more

                        Creating this dessert is my way of remembering the good saint.The heavenly taste of the slowly-cooked sweet cinnamony-flavored pears is gently overshadowed by the subtle flavor of the habanero peppers. The after-taste is unique and almost indescribable, but pleasantly memorable. I call it Sweet Fire.

                        If you like sweet, but not too sweet; and hot -- but not too hot, you may want to try this recipe out for size -- especially if you've got a lot of extra pears on hand, and you want to do something different. It makes a great topping on hot sourdough bread, or over Cajun-fried ice-cream.

                        Ingredients
                        • 1 1/2 dozen pears, peeled and cut-up
                        • 2 mature habanero peppers, seeds removed and cut into tiny pieces
                        • 1/2 cup water
                        • 2 cups granulated sugar
                        • 1/2 cup brown sugar
                        • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
                        • 1/2 tsp. whole cloves
                        • 1 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
                        • pinch of salt

                          Instructions 

                          1. bake the pears in your oven at 350 degrees F. for about 30 minutes and allow to cool before peeling
                          2. once peeled, slice or cut small chunks of the pears to the core, discard core and seeds
                          3. remove the seeds and chop the habanero peppers into very small pieces
                          4. add everything together in a stew pot and mix well
                          5. cook on medium heat for 2 hours or more, stirring occasionally, until pears have softened
                          6. store the preserves in a glass vessel and refrigerate

                          Note: Wearing gloves when handling habanero peppers to protect your hands is a good idea. Do not rub your eyes and thoroughly wash your hands with soapy water immediately after handling the peppers if gloves or not used.


                          The reason for chopping the peppers into very small pieces is to evenly spread the heat throughout the preserves.


                          I hope you enjoy this dessert. Spread the word about it and please support your local firefighters in any way that you can. Bon Appetite!

                          Announcement: I am under a little 'pear pressure' to come up with a Cajun joke concerning (you named it) -- pears. I don't know any, so I need some help.

                          If you have a joke or humorous anecdote that you would like to share, concerning pears, please submit it in the comment section below. Keep it clean, okay? The best one will be published with proper credit given.





                             
                          Signature Icon

                          Monday, July 11, 2011

                          Vitamins, Minerals and a Healthy Diet

                          According to the USDA, a healthy diet includes fruits, whole grains, vegetables, fat-free and low-fat milk, and other dairy products. The healthy diet also includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs and nuts, with a reduction in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars. 

                          Minerals and Nutrients Vital to our Health 

                          When looking to improve health, know and understand your vitamins and minerals intake?

                          Below is a partial list of foods sources with essential vitamins and minerals – enough to give a head-start at recognizing and understanding what the body needs to maintain proper health.

                          Vitamin A – for eyesight and the immune system: cod liver oil, dairy, sweet potatoes and dark green leafy vegetables.

                          Vitamin B1 – (a/k/a Thiamin) for processing carbohydrates: cereals, whole grain breads, and pastas have high amounts of Thiamin.

                          Vitamin B2 – (a/k/a Riboflavin) produces red blood cells and converts food into energy: almonds, asparagus, eggs, meat and fortified cereals.

                          Vitamin  B3 – (a/k/a Niacin) aids in digestion and also converts food into energy: lean chicken, salmon, tuna, turkey, peanuts, fortified cereals and enriched flour.
                           
                          Vitamin B6
                          – vital for a healthy nervous system and helps to break down proteins and stored sugars: light-meat chicken and turkey, eggs, baked potatoes with skin, bananas, spinach, fortified cereals and fortified soy-based meat substitutes.

                          Vitamin B12 – for creating red blood cells: beef, poultry, salmon, crabs, mussels and soybeans.

                          Vitamin C
                          – for promoting a healthy immune system: potatoes, tomatoes, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, red and green peppers, spinach, citrus fruits and berries.  

                          Vitamin D – for processing calcium to maintain healthy teeth and bones: fortified milk, cheese, egg yolks, salmon, cereals and sunlight.

                          Vitamin E
                          – for promoting healthy skin; antioxidant: almonds, hazelnuts,  leafy green vegetables; Canola, sunflower, soybean and olive oils. Signature Icon

                          Spicy Cajun-Broiled Chicken for Diabetics (video text)

                          This is  a simple and quick way to cook-up a savory chicken dinner for all members of your family. 

                          Signature Icon

                          Wednesday, July 06, 2011

                          Deep Frying Tip -- How to Test if the Oil is Hot Enough

                          When frying food the oil should be sufficiently heated before beginning frying. This is to avoid a greasy texture and taste.

                          The reasoning behind this is when the hot oil makes contact with whatever is frying, it will quickly seal-in the juices, (on meats, for example), and seal-out the oil in which the food is frying.

                          One way to determine if the oil is hot enough to begin frying is to introduce a small sample of the food you are cooking. When the hot oil begins to bubble rapidly around the test sample is how to determine when it is ready.


                          Signature Icon

                          Tuesday, June 14, 2011

                          Summertime Cooking Tip (Don't Sweat the Small Stuff)

                          Audio Tip



                          Using Your Crock Pot to Beat the Summer Heat

                          The kitchen can become an uncomfortable place to be when the weather outside warms up. But, don't sweat the small stuff. Use a crockpot. It doesn't require traditional stove top or oven cooking methods and it will keep your kitchen cooler while preparing a nice hot meal for family and friends.

                          So, how does crock pot cooking really help beat the heat? Simply put, the crock pot in and of itself puts off far less heat when cooking than an oven or stove top. This is the first and possibly the best reason to utilize the crock pot in your summer meal planning. You should also consider the fact that by not heating the house by using your stove top or oven you are also preventing your air conditioning (or other cooling methods) from working overtime in order to compensate for the additional heat that other cooking methods introduce.

                          This makes crock pot cooking a win-win situation as the costs involved in operating a crock pot are far less than the costs involved in operating a stove or oven in general. Whether electric or gas, your stove and oven are often serious energy hogs. Add to that the fact that you are not raising the temperature in your home by traditional means of cooking and you are using even less electricity.

                          Unfortunately for most, the general consensus has been that crock pots were meant for comfort foods and hearty winter meals. The truth is that the crock pot should be one of your best loved and most often utilized cooking methods if you can manage it. When it comes to cooking with a crock pot, the options are almost limitless. Almost anything that can be baked can be made in the crock pot and many, many more wonderful and enticing meals and treats as well.

                          Benefits of Crock Pot Cooking

                          In addition to the cost benefits mentioned above when it comes to crock pot cooking there are many other benefits that are well worth mentioning. First of all, the bulk of the work involved in crock pot cooking takes place early in the day when you are refreshed rather than at the end of a hectic work or play day. This means that you are less likely to forget an ingredient or make other mistakes that often occur as we hurriedly prepare a dinner when we are exhausted from the activities of our day.

                          Second, many great crock pot recipes include the vegetables that insure we are getting the nutrients we need. So often, when preparing a meal at the last minute, vegetables and other side dishes are left out in favor of expedience. Crock pot cooking in many instances is a meal in one dish.

                          Another great reason to use a crock pot for your summertime cooking is the ease of clean up. Unlike pots and pans, most crock pot meals are made in one dish. This means that there will not be mountains of dishes to be either hand washed or loaded into the dishwasher (or if you are like me—both) afterwards. You can spend less time cleaning just as you spent less time slaving over a hot stove. Oh wait! Make that no time slaving over a hot stove. Once clean up is complete you can get back to enjoying the sun set, chasing the lightening bugs with your little ones, or waiting for the first star.

                          While there will never be a one size fits all best cooking method, crock pot cooking comes very close. If you have a crock pot collecting dust somewhere in the back of your pantry it is time to get it out, dust if off, and dig up some great summertime crock pot cooking recipes which you can find right here on RealCajunCooking.com Signature Icon

                          Saturday, May 14, 2011

                          Turkey Gravy

                          Ingredients
                          • Turkey pan drippings (optional)
                          • 2 cups chicken broth
                          • 1 Tbsp Easy Microwave Gumbo Roux
                          • 1 Tbsp butter
                          • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
                          • 1 bay leaf
                          • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
                          • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
                          • 2 ribs celery split, and cut in half
                          • 1 carrot, coarsely chopped
                          • 1/4 onion, coarsely chopped
                          • 1 tsp. corn starch
                          • 2 tsp. cold water


                          Instructions 
                          1. bring chicken broth to a boil in a saucepan, then reduce to a simmer
                          2. mix powdered roux with a couple tablespoons of the broth, then whisk it in
                          3. add pan drippings, celery, carrot, onion, garlic, bay leaf, salt and pepper
                          4. simmer mixture until reduced by one third
                          5. mix corn starch with a couple teaspoons cold water, then whisk it in
                          6. when gravy thickens, strain it into a serving dish

                          This gravy is so easy to make, and it tastes great with turkey and mashed potatoes.  Add a little rubbed sage to the gravy and it works great with pork chops or pork tenderloin, too.

                          Bon Appetit!
                          Signature Icon

                          Friday, May 13, 2011

                          Spaghetti Bordelaise


                          Ingredients
                          • 1/2 stick butter
                          • 2 Tbsp olive oil
                          • 6 large cloves garlic
                          • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
                          • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
                          • 1 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
                          • thin spaghetti noodles

                          Instructions 
                          1. fill a large stock pot with water until about 3/4 full
                          2. bring to a rolling boil, then add a pinch of salt, and a few drops of olive oil
                          3. add the spaghetti noodles to the boiling water
                          4. add the butter and oil to a small saucepan, and warm it until the butter is melted
                          5. smash the garlic cloves with the side of a knife and add it to the pan, along with the salt and pepper
                          6. turn up the heat to medium until the garlic begins to toast
                          7. turn off the heat, and quickly remove the garlic using a strainer or a slotted spoon (strainer works best because it removes some of the butter fat)
                          8. stir the parsley into the mix to complete the bordelaise sauce
                          9. once the spaghetti is al dente, turn off the heat, drain, and return spaghetti to the pot
                          10. toss in the bordelaise sauce

                          This makes an easy, light, delicious meal.  You can add other things to the noodles, like shrimp or sun dried tomatoes.  You might even toss in some cajun seasoning to spice it up a bit.  This goes great served with chilled Pinot Grigio.  Bon Appetit!
                          Signature Icon

                          Monday, May 02, 2011

                          Onion Flavored Deep Fried Catfish Nuggets

                          Audio Cooking Tip



                          Onion flavored fried catfish nuggets are savory treats and make excellent hors d'œuvres for your invited guests before serving the main course. Simple and easy to prepare, you can have these delicious nuggets ready to serve in no time flat. Give it a try. They go great with tartar sauce. If you like the taste of toasted onions then you will surely love the taste of these onion-flavored deep-fried catfish nuggets.

                          Ingredients

                          4 (6 oz.) catfish fillets cut into 1" squares
                          1/4 cup of all-purpose flour
                          1 packet of Lipton's Onion Soup Mix
                          Season to taste
                          Oil

                          Note: Usually, "deep-frying" means that there is enough oil in the pot to completely submerge the foods which you are frying. If you don't have a lot of oil on hand don't fret because you can get the same results if you have enough oil in your pot or skillet to fry one side at the time.

                          It just takes a little longer because you will have to flip each nugget over individually, whereas in lots of oil your fish nuggets, when cooked, will float to the top and you can use a slotted scoop or wire basket to extract the nuggets from the hot oil. So, if you don't have enough oil to do a deep fry in the traditional sense, just use what you have and on medium-high heat cook the nuggets for about 3 minutes on each side, or until they have reached a golden-brown color.

                          For the purposes of this recipe I am going to focus on the traditional deep-fry method.

                          Instructions

                          1. Cut the nuggets into 1" squares, rinse-off under cool water and set aside (do not pat dry).
                          2. Add the pct. of onion soup mix (other seasoning) and 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, mix well.
                          3. Pre-heat the oil on medium-high heat to around 365 degrees F.
                          4. Thoroughly coat the wet nuggets in the mix.
                          5. Fry until nuggets float to the top, become golden brown and bubbles have diminished in size.
                          6. Serve as appetizers along with tartar sauce.
                          Bon Appetite! ... Ahheee!!
                          Signature Icon

                          Friday, March 04, 2011

                          Shrimp, Italian Sausage and Mushroom Jambalaya (video)


                          Audio Introduction



                           


                          Here is a simple way to combine the forces of Gulf of Mexico shrimp, hot Italian sausage and fresh button mushrooms to create an exceedingly tasty and moist surf-and-turf jambalaya.

                          Ingredients

                          • 2 lbs. large Gulf of Mexico shrimp, shelled and deveined
                          • 1 lb. Hot Italian sausage, 1/2" slices
                          • 8 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
                          • 1 large onion, chopped
                          • 1 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
                          • 1 cup canola oil
                          • 1 pk. Lipton's Beefy Onion Soup Mix
                          • 1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
                          • 1 tsp. onion powder
                          • 1 tsp. garlic powder
                          • 1 tsp. red pepper
                          • 1 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
                          • 1 tsp. salt

                          Instructions

                          Using a #10 cast-iron skillet (or similar large skillet) begin by frying the Italian sausage on medium heat in the 1 cup of canola oil for about 10 minutes before adding the chopped onions and bell pepper. Continue cooking until the onions become translucent.

                          Next, add the 2 lbs. of shrimp and packet of Lipton's Beefy Onion Soup Mix and cook on medium heat for another 10 minutes before adding the sliced mushrooms. Next, add in all of the dry seasoning and mix well. Continue cooking until the mushrooms have been reduced to about half their size - stirring occasionally (about 7 - 8 minutes). 

                          Now stir-in the 1 1/2 cups of chopped green onions and continue cooking on medium heat for a couple of minutes.

                          Finally, turn off the heat and add the 4 cups of cooked white long grain rice in stages and mix thoroughly. It is important that the rice is distributed evenly throughout. Put the cover back on and allow the jambalaya to cool down for a few minutes before serving.

                          This meal goes well with slices of toasted garlic butter French sour dough bread. Makes 8 - 10 servings. 

                          Note: Don't be at all surprised if your dinner guests ask for seconds and thirds. You may want to start by serving smaller portions. Just sayin'...

                          Enjoy! Ahheee!!




                          Signature Icon

                          Wednesday, March 02, 2011

                          Tex-Mex Slow Cooked 3-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas

                          Do you want to know a quick and easy way to make some delicious creamy and cheesy white enchiladas (no tomatoes)? Start by turning your crock pot on the low setting and follow the simple instructions below.


                          Ingredients

                          • 2 skinless chicken breasts, diced
                          • 1/2 stick butter
                          • 1 can Campbell's Creamy Chicken Soup, 14.75 oz.
                          • 1 can Campbell's Fiesta Cheese Sauce, 10.75 oz.
                          • 4 burrito size flour tortillas
                          • 8 oz. shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese
                          • 5 oz. Kraft Philadelphia Cooking Creme (original)
                          • 1 can green chilies, 4 oz.
                          • 1 tsp. garlic powder
                          • 1 tsp. onion powder
                          • salt to taste

                          Instructions

                          1. Pour the Campbell's Creamy Chicken Soup into the crockpot and put the cover on to create heat. 
                          2. In a large skillet, on medium heat, use the half-stick of butter to cook the diced chicken, green chilies, garlic and onion powders and salt. About 10 - 15 minutes. Set aside 
                          3. Using a pie spatula (or similar device) generously spread the Kraft Philadelphia Cooking Creme on the four flour tortillas.
                          4. Divide the cooked chicken into 4 equal parts and create a row of meat across the middle of each tortilla.
                          5. Apply about 3 - 4 tablespoons of Campbell's Fiesta Cheese sauce on top of the meat rows.
                          6. Sprinkle each row with 1 oz. of shredded Cheddar and Monterrey Jack cheese.
                          7. Gently roll each tortillas, seal the ends, and place them in the crockpot on top of the Creamy Chicken Soup.
                          8. Layer the top of the tortillas with the remaining Fiesta Cheese sauce and shredded cheeses. 
                          9. Cook on low for 1/2 hour.
                          This recipe will produce 4 servings, but these are so large that they can be cut in half to serve 8.

                          Note: If you don't have a crockpot you can use a casserole dish and cook them in your oven.

                          Enjoy!


                          Signature Icon
                          There was an error in this gadget

                          Most Popular Posts of All Time