Saturday, September 29, 2018

Sunday Dinner September 30, 2018

On the Menu




New Orleans Shrimp Étouffée
8 Servings

Ingredients
1 lb. shrimp, 31-40 count, peeled, deveined & seasoned with Cajun seasoning (save shrimp shells to make shrimp stock)
2 teaspoon dry thyme
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoon dry basil
6 oz salted butter
5 tablespoons flour
4 ribs celery diced
½ cup red onion, diced
½ cup red bell pepper, diced
½ cup green bell pepper, diced
4 cloves garlic minced
¼ cup tomato puree or paste
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
1- quart shrimp stock
3 tablespoon cooking oil
4 tablespoon fresh parsley minced
4 cups rice cook according to directions on package
3 stalks of green onions chopped
Cajun hot sauce, to taste

Method
For the Shrimp Stock:  Using a medium-sized pot on medium heat add the shells of the peeled shrimp and 2½ quarts water, thyme, chili powder, basil and any leftover scraps from the prepping of your veggies. Cook uncovered until reduced by half. Remove from heat and set shrimp stock aside.
For the roux:  In a large, heavy skillet or pot over medium-low heat, melt butter. Add flour and constantly stir for 2 to 3 minutes, making a light roux. Add celery, onions, red and green bell peppers and garlic. Sauté on medium-low heat for 3 minutes. Add tomato puree or paste and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Add ½ cup of shrimp stock to roux mixture, mix well to form a paste. Add lemon juice, Cajun Seasoning and remaining shrimp stock; make sure to leave the shrimp peelings out. Stir well and cook étouffée sauce uncovered over medium heat for about 15 minutes.
For the Shrimp: In a medium-sized skillet heat cooking oil over medium-high heat until hot. Add shrimp and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes or until shrimp begin to turn slightly pink. Deglaze skillet with a little water and scrap shrimp and juices into étouffée sauce. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes.
Stir in parsley, cover and remove from heat.
Serve with rice and top with green onions and Cajun hot Sauce to taste.

NOTE: If étouffée sauce is too thick, thin it out with a little chicken broth or water. If it’s too thin, allow it to continue cooking until desired thickness is reach. It should have the consistency of a meat sauce.
 Brown Basmati Rice
8 Servings
Ingredients
3 1/2 cups water
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
2 teaspoons granulated onion
1/2 teaspoon crushed red chili peppers
2 cups brown basmati rice


Method
In a 3 quart saucepan bring water and seasonings to a boil.  Add the rice, bring pot back up to a boil, stir, cover and reduce heat to the lowest setting.
Let rice cook undisturbed 45 minutes.  After cooking period is completed, do not open pot, just remove it from the heat and let it sit 20 minutes undisturbed.
Remove top and fluff before serving.
Sauteed Greens and Vegetable Medley
4 Servings

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion,sliced
1 small red bell pepper, sliced,
1 small yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 small orange bell pepper, sliced
1 large jalapeno pepper, sliced
4 large garlic cloves, sliced
8 ounces mushrooms (your choice), sliced
1 large beef steak tomato, diced
2 teaspoons granulate garlic
2 teaspoons granulated onion
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon black pepper ½ teaspoon chipotle or cayenne pepper
1 bunch of collard greens,chopped
1 orange


Method
Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok, add the onions and peppers and saute until both are wilted.  Add the garlic and mushrooms and continue sauteing about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and seasonings, mix thoroughly and continue sauteing until all liquid is absorbed. Add the collards and squeeze the juice of 1 orange over them mix thoroughly and taste for flavor. Adjust the seasoning/add ½ cup of water or vegetable broth if needed,cover and simmer until green are  tender.  

Creole Squash 
4 to 6 servings
Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium bell pepper, chopped
2 ½ pounds squash, sliced
3 large tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon Creole Seasoning

Method
Heat the olive oil in a skillet, add onion and bell pepper and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the squash, tomatoes, salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning and mix thoroughly. Cook until squash begins to soften. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. 


 




New Orleans Shrimp Étouffée

New Orleans Shrimp Étouffée
8 Servings

Ingredients
1 lb. shrimp, 31-40 count, peeled, deveined & seasoned with Cajun seasoning (save shrimp shells to make shrimp stock)
2 teaspoon dry thyme
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoon dry basil
6 oz salted butter
5 tablespoons flour
4 ribs celery diced
½ cup red onion, diced
½ cup red bell pepper, diced
½ cup green bell pepper, diced
4 cloves garlic minced
¼ cup tomato puree or paste
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
1- quart shrimp stock
3 tablespoon cooking oil
4 tablespoon fresh parsley minced
4 cups rice cook according to directions on package
3 stalks of green onions chopped
Cajun hot sauce, to taste

Method
For the Shrimp Stock:  Using a medium-sized pot on medium heat add the shells of the peeled shrimp and 2½ quarts water, thyme, chili powder, basil and any leftover scraps from the prepping of your veggies. Cook uncovered until reduced by half. Remove from heat and set shrimp stock aside.
For the roux:  In a large, heavy skillet or pot over medium-low heat, melt butter. Add flour and constantly stir for 2 to 3 minutes, making a light roux. Add celery, onions, red and green bell peppers and garlic. Sauté on medium-low heat for 3 minutes. Add tomato puree or paste and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Add ½ cup of shrimp stock to roux mixture, mix well to form a paste. Add lemon juice, Cajun Seasoning and remaining shrimp stock; make sure to leave the shrimp peelings out. Stir well and cook étouffée sauce uncovered over medium heat for about 15 minutes.
For the Shrimp: In a medium-sized skillet heat cooking oil over medium-high heat until hot. Add shrimp and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes or until shrimp begin to turn slightly pink. Deglaze skillet with a little water and scrap shrimp and juices into étouffée sauce. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes.
Stir in parsley, cover and remove from heat.
Serve with rice and top with green onions and Cajun hot Sauce to taste.

NOTE: If étouffée sauce is too thick, thin it out with a little chicken broth or water. If it’s too thin, allow it to continue cooking until desired thickness is reach. It should have the consistency of a meat sauce.


Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sunday Dinner September 23, 2018

On the Menu




Lemon Garlic Chicken with Roasted Vegetables

4 Servings

Ingredients

1 (5-lb.) whole chicken

6 - 8 garlic cloves, chopped

1 teaspoon sea salt

3 tablespoons peanut oil

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Zest of 2 lemons

Juice from 2 lemons, divided

¾ teaspoon black pepper, divided

1 pound small red new potatoes, halved

8 ounces baby carrots

8 ounces Brussels sprouts, halved

1 teaspoon granulated garlic

1 teaspoon granulated onion

½ teaspoon black pepper



Method

Preheat oven to 450°F. 

Rinse chicken, and pat dry. Place chicken, breast side down, on a cutting board. Using poultry shears, cut along both sides of backbone, and remove backbone. (Discard or reserve for stock.) Turn chicken breast side up and open the underside of chicken like a book. Using the heel of your hand, press firmly against breastbone until it cracks (see note below).

Combine garlic, salt, oil, thyme, lemon zest, ½ lemon juice and pepper in a pureeing vessel and process until smooth. Set aside 2 tablespoons of the garlic mixture and rub remaining mixture over the chicken on both sides.

Place chicken in a large rimmed baking pan. Tuck wing tips under chicken so they don't burn. Let chicken marinate in the garlic mixture at least 1 hour or refrigerate, cover and marinate overnight.

Bake chicken in preheated oven 10 minutes then reduce heat to 400°F. 

In a mixing bowl add the potatoes, carrots, Brussels sprouts and dry seasonings. Pour in the remaining 2 tablespoons garlic mixture and lemon juice then mix until the vegetables are coated.  Remove chicken from oven and place the seasoned vegetables around the chicken and return to oven. Bake until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 165°F, about 20 minutes.

Let stand 10 minutes before Carving chicken. Serve with pan juices.
Note: Once I remove the back bone from the chicken, I like to remove the skin by just pulling it straight off, cutting around the wings to leave the wings skin intact. I then rub it down with the garlic mixture and let it marinate overnight. 

Houston’s Braised Cabbage (Copycat)
4 – 6 Servings

Ingredients
1 head red cabbage, shredded
½ cup white wine vinegar
¼ cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons brown sugar
goat cheese for garnish

Method
Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Add the vinegar, water, olive oil and brown sugar to a Dutch oven.
Heat on the stove and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
Add the cabbage, mix thoroughly then cover and cook for 15 minutes.
Place pot in the hot oven and braise for 1 hour.
Stir about every 20 minutes and if the liquid evaporates, just add a little water or orange juice.
Serve with a dollop of goat cheese.





Avocado and Watercress Salad

4 Servings



Ingredients
1 lemon juiced

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon sea salt

½ teaspoon granulated garlic
½ teaspoon crushed red chili peppers


3 avocados, halved, pitted and slice

1 bunch watercress, stems trimmed

freshly ground black pepper



Method In a small bowl, whisk together the juice of 1 lemon, olive oil, salt, garlic and chili peppers, sit to the side.
Place the watercress on a platter and top with the sliced avocado. Pour the dressing  on top and gently mix by hand. Serve immediately.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Sunday Dinner September 16, 2018

On The Menu





Firecracker Chicken

4 – 6 Servings



Chicken

4 – 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

½ teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon granulated garlic

1 teaspoon granulated onion

¼ - ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon oil



Sauce Ingredients

¼ cup maple syrup

1 medium – large chipotle pepper in adobo sauce

3 tablespoons adobo sauce

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

½ teaspoon butter

2 garlic cloves

¼ cup light brown sugar


Chicken Directions

Combine the sea salt, granulated garlic, granulated onion and cayenne pepper then season chicken thoroughly with it.  Let the chicken marinate in the seasoning at least an hour or overnight.
To bake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or wipe a sheet pan lightly with oil. Place breast on pan and bake 40 - 45 minutes (depending on size of breast) or when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. 

To grill: Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat, and lightly oil. Cook On the prepared grill for 12 minutes per side, or until chicken juice is no longer pink. Once the juice runs clear and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit you are ready to top chicken with Firecracker Sauce.


Sauce Directions

In a blender or food processor, combine the maple syrup, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, apple cider vinegar, butter, garlic and light brown sugar and process until smooth. Transfer product to a small sauce pan and simmer over medium heat. Allow it to come to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer. Leave it simmering until chicken is done, stirring occasionally. When chicken is ready, pour the sauce over it and serve.




Sweet Potato Veggie Bake
4 Servings

Ingredients
2 sweet potatoes, ½” cubes
1 zucchini, quartered ½” pieces
1 yellow squash, quartered ½” pieces
1 medium red bell pepper chopped
3 garlic clove sliced
¼ teaspoon rosemary, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1½ teaspoons Creole Seasoning 1 teaspoon sea salt 

Method
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
In a medium size bowl toss together all the ingredients, Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet leaving a little space between the pieces and bake for 35 minutes, until potatoes are tender.   You can also cook them on the grill.
Cuban Black Beans and Rice  
8 Servings
Ingredients   
½ cup dried black beans
4 cups water
2 large bay leaf
2 teaspoons granulated garlic2 teaspoons granulated onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red onion, diced
1 large green bell pepper, diced
4 large garlic gloves, diced
2 cups brown rice
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 tablespoon cumin
1 small bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped

Method 
Sort and rinse black beans add them to  medium pot along with water bay leaves, granulated garlic and granulated onion.  Cook until beans are tender, stirring occasionally.When beans are tender, heat a larger pot on medium heat add the olive oil, red onion, bell pepper and chopped garlic. Saute until onions are slightly brown.
Add the rice and saute rice and vegetables about 1 minute.
Add beans along with the water they were cooked in; to the rice and vegetable mixture. Add water if necessary to cover the beans by at least 1 inch of liquid.  Add salt, cumin and 1/2 of the cilantro and mix thoroughly. Taste liquid for flavor and adjust seasoning as needed. 
Bring the pot up to a boil and cover. Reduce heat to the lowest setting and let mixture cook 45 minutes or until rice is tender and all liquid is absorbed.
When rice is done, mix in the remaining cilantro cover and let rice sit another 8 minutes before serving.

  Grilled Cabbage Slaw

6 servings

Ingredients



½ cup white wine vinegar

½ cup olive oil

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon

½ teaspoon sea salt

½ teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon granulated garlic

1 medium red cabbage, quartered leave core in tact

1 medium green cabbage quartered leave core in tact

1 bunch scallions



Methods

Preheat grill to medium-high heat, wipe down grates with oil.

 Whisk vinegar, oil, mustard, tarragon, salt, pepper and garlic in medium bowl.

Brush cabbages and green onions with some of the dressing.

Grill cabbages until dark grill marks form, 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Grill green onions until charred on 1 side, 2 to 3 minutes.

Transfer vegetables to a chopping board and let cool.

Chop scallions and cabbages; place in large bowl, discarding cores.

Add remaining dressing; toss until coated.





 Lemon Bundt Cake
8-10 Servings
Ingredients
For the Cake
2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 ½ cups granulated sugar, divided
5 large eggs, room temperature
¼ cup lemon zest
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
1 cups buttermilk, room temperature
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
The Icing
1 cups powered sugar
2 tables freshly squeezed lemon juice
Method
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Flour & grease a bunt cake pan.
Use a mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter with 2 cups granulated sugar until fluffy.  Place mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time them add the lemon zest.
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.
In another bowl, combine ½ cup lemon juice, buttermilk and vanilla.
Place the mixer on low and add the flour and buttermilk mixtures to the creamed butter and sugar mixture, alternating between the dry and wet ingredients and ending with the flour. 
Transfer mixture to cake pan, smooth the top and bake 45 minutes to an hour or until the tester comes out clean.
Combine ½ cup of granulated sugar with ½ cup of lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves.  When cake is done, let it cool for 10 minutes. 
Place cake on a plate  and spoon the lemon syrup over the cake then let it cool completely.
For the icing, combine the powered sugar with lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a whisk until smooth.  Pour over the top of the cake and allow it to drizzle down the sides.