Saturday, November 17, 2012

Shrimp Etouffee

Hmmmmm sometimes when you have a craving for a certain kind of food, does it seem that nothing else will quite satisfy you?  Well I've been craving shrimp etouffee lately and finally just had to break down and make some!
Here it is; not really difficult.  The only fussy part is the roux because you do have to keep it moving until it's nice and dark like chocolate.......other than that really simple!

Shrimp Etouffee
1 t. salt
1 t. Old Bay Seasoning
½ t. white pepper
½ t. black pepper
1 t. oregano
½ t. thyme
¼ c. canola oil
¼ c. flour
¼ c. chopped onion
¼ c. chopped celery
¼ c. chopped yellow pepper
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
4 T. butter
1 pound peeled medium shrimp
½ c. chopped scallions

In a small bowl combine first 6 ingredients and set aside
In a heavy sauce pan heat oil until the smoking point then sprinkle in the flour and whisk for about 30 seconds until well incorporated
Reduce heat to medium-low and cook about 45-55 minutes whisking all the time until the roux is dark in color
Add onions and stir constantly until softened; usually about 5 minutes
Remove from heat and stir in ½ of the spice mixture, celery and peppers.
Stir until roux has cooled and darkened a bit more
In a 2 quart sauce pan heat 1 cup of the chicken stock until boiling
Slowly whisk in the roux and cook for 2 minutes
Remove from heat and set aside
In a large sauté pan melt the butter over medium high heat until bubbling
Stir in shrimp and scallion; continue stirring for 2 minutes
Add the remaining spices and chicken broth along with the roux mixture
Stir while cooking for about 5 minutes until shrimp are cooked and sauce is shiny
Serve at once over rice

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Mac 'n Cheese Carbonara

What happens when you combine America's favorite Mac 'n Cheese with Italy's favorite Pasta Carbonara?  Mac 'n Cheese Carbonara that's what and I can guarantee it will just right up to the top of YOUR family favorite's list!
Video Recipe:

1 pound elbow macaroni cooked to al dente
Carbonara Topping:
10 slices pancetta rough chopped
3 cups bread crumbs
1 cup grated Parmigiano
½ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
Mac & Cheese”
1 clove garlic minced
2 cups cream
1 ½ cups whole milk
3 teaspoons flour
½ teaspoon each salt and pepper
2 cups grated Fontina
¾ cup  Parmigiano
1 cup mozzarella
2 tablespoons butter
¼ cup olive oil
In a dry saucepan cook pancetta until slightly crisp
Combine pancetta, 2 tablespoons drippings, bread crumbs, I cup Parmigiano and parsley
Set aside
Add garlic to pancetta drippings and heat for 1 minute
Whisk in flour until bubbling and slightly browned
Slowly add, cream, milk, salt and pepper whisking over medium heat until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes
Add fontina, parmigiano and mozzarella whisking until melted
Mix together with pasta and pour into buttered baking dish
Top with bread crumb mixture and press down
Drizzle with olive oil
Bake in preheated 350F oven for 20-25 minutes

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Daube Provencal

A faster and easier approach to the traditional Daube. This recipe was inspired by the daube served at Chez Barale in old town Nice. Now the traditional doube's cooking time is somewhere around 8 hours which is just not realistic for our busy lifestyles today so I have created a method that keeps the full robust flavors of the traditional but cuts your prep and cooking time considerably!

8 ounces dried proccini mushrooms
2 pounds beef ( I use an inexpensive chuck)
2 pounds pork
1 pound veal
4 ounces salt pork
1/4 cup olive oil
2 onions
3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons Herbs De Provence
3 cups chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup red wine
1 pound carrots
1/4 cup cognac
1 bouquet garni (parsley, thyme bay leaf)
1 tablespoon orange zest

Soak mushrooms in 1 cup hot water
Cube the beef, pork, veal but leave the salt pork whole
Brown the meat in olive oil. Do this in batches so as not to overcrowd the pan.
Chop the onion and garlic.
Add to the meat and saute over medium heat for 15 minutes.
Drain the mushrooms, chop and add to the pan along with the strained juices.
Add Herbs De Provence and tomatoes.
Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
Add the red wine, cover and simmer for 1 hour.
Add the carrots, cognac, bouquet garni and cognac; cover and simmer for 2 1/2 hours.
Daube Provencal is taditionally served with ravioli stuffed with Swiss Chard.  Any wide pasta or mashed potatoes make a heavenly match for this Daube Provencal!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Dijon Mustard Pork Tenderloin with Tarragon Wine Sauce

Long name for a VERY easy dish to make!  Seriously easy yet absolutely delicious is more like it!
While living in France I came to realize just how marvelous Dijon mustard is as a flavor base for protein. Goodness, I swear half of the restaurants in the south serve rabbit with Dijon mustard sauce and the other half use it with chicken or pork.  Today we are combining the tang of Dijon with the sweet herbiness of Tarragon; a flavor marriage made in heaven!

OK lets get started with the video recipe:

Oh yes, there is also a sweet treat to enjoy after dinner.  One that you can toss together in seconds and then pop in the oven while you are dining!
In the mean time, here is the printable recipe for Dijon Mustard Pork Tenderloin with Tarragon Wine Sauce!

1 Pork Tenderloin
3 T. Dijon Mustard
¼ C. olive oil
1 C. dry white wine
3 cloves garlic
2 T. fresh thyme
3 T. fresh rosemary
½ t. allspice
¾ C. heavy cream
2 T. fresh chopped tarragon ½ cups chicken stock
Salt & pepper

Put garlic through a press into a large zip lock bag.
Add olive oil, wine, garlic, thyme, rosemary and allspice.
Add the pork tenderloin and let marinade for 30 minutes.
Remove pork tenderloin to roasting pan and discard marinade.
Spread with mustard and bake in preheated 375 oven for 25 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 150.
Set aside to rest and prepare tarragon sauce.
Combine cream, tarragon, chicken stock salt & pepper.
Bring to a boil over medium high heat then lower heat and simmer until reduced by half.
Slice tenderloin and serve with tarragon sauce.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Coq au Vin the EASY way!

Coq au Vin, which simply translates to rooster in wine, is now updated to be made easily in American kitchens.  Instead of an aged rooster, use boneless chicken breasts or thighs to cut your prep and cooking time down to 30 minutes!

I mean really; who has hours and hours to spend cooking an old stringy rooster that is past his prime!  Not me that's for sure!  Here we keep all of the delicious flavors and lose all the cooking time.
Coq au Vin short video recipe:

Coq au Vin
6 slices bacon
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 T. fresh parsley
½ t. salt & ¼ t. pepper
8 ounces baby portabella mushrooms
6 shallots
3 cloves garlic
1 ½ cups dry red wine
1 ½ cups chicken stock
4 t. flour
Rough chop and sauté the bacon in a non stick pan until lightly browned.
Remove from pan and set aside to drain on paper towels.
Chop the parsley and sprinkle over the chicken breasts.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Place into the sauté pan used for the bacon and cook over medium/high heat until just done; about 6 minutes per side.
Transfer chicken breasts to an oven proof dish and place into pre heated 300 degree oven to keep warm.
Wipe mushrooms with damp paper towel to clean then cut in half or quarters depending on size.
Slice shallots in half lengthwise and sauté with the mushrooms until beginning to brown, about 5 to 6 minutes.
Finely mince garlic or put through a press then add to the mushrooms and mix well.
Add the wine, 1 ¼ cups chicken stock and the drained bacon.
Bring to a boil and let bubble gently for 10 minutes uncovered.
In a small bowl mix the reserved ¼ cup chicken stock into the flour and whisk until incorporated.
Combine the flour mixture with the cooking wine sauce and stir well, then let thicken for about 5 minutes.
Place chicken on serving platter, add any juices to the sauce.