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Hoppin' John
Author:
Cuisine: Soul Food
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 6
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Ingredients
  • 5 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Large Onion, Diced
  • 6 cloves Garlic, Pressed
  • 1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Diced
  • 4 stalks Celery, Diced
  • 4 Tablespoons flour
  • 1 Pound Soaked Black-eyed Peas
  • 5 cups Chicken Stock, Ham., or Veggie Stock
  • 1 whole Ham Hock
  • 1 can Rotel or Diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp of Smoked Paprika
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme or 2 tsp dry divided
  • 3 healthy squirts of Sriracha
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup of Chopped Ham (possibly left over from Christmas)
  • 3 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar
  • 3 cups cooked Rice, For Serving
  • Green Onion for garnish
Instructions
  1. Add butter over medium heat
  2. Add onions, celery, and bell pepper when the butter gives off a nutty smell and saute for 5 minutes
  3. Add the flour and saute until golden brown stirring constantly
  4. Add tomato paste and pressed garlic and cook for two minutes
  5. Deglaze pan with stock and tomatoes scraping brown bits with a wooden spoon
  6. Add ham hock, paprika, bay leaves and 2 sprigs of thyme
  7. Bring everything to a heavy simmer and reduce to low and put on the lid
  8. Turn on the football bowl games and crack a beer
  9. Stir every 15-20 minutes until the peas are cooked through
  10. After 40-45 minutes add ham, vinegar and Sriracha
  11. Start cooking rice
  12. You can keep peas and rice on low until your football game is over
  13. Serve over rice with a green onion garnish

 

 


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Creole catfishThis is an easy delicious way to make catfish, and  it incorporates a classic Creole tomato sauce.  Make sure you get Mississippi raised catfish.  Tilapia is for communist.

  • 1 pound catfish
  • 1 onion chopped fine
  • 1 bell pepper chopped fine
  • 1  stalk celery diced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (Rotels work too)
  • 4 cloves garlic pressed
  • 1/2 serrano chili chopped very fine
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 quarter cup cornmeal Plus 1 tablespoon flour with salt and pepper and Creole seasoning
  • 1 egg plus a splash of milk
  1.  Add your butter to a medium sauce pan or saucier over medium low heat.
  2. When butter is nutty brown add flour and incorporate with wooden spoon.
  3. After roux is golden add onion, bell pepper, and celery and saute till onions are slightly translucent or roux gets a bit sticky(to the pan).
  4. Add tomatoes and deglaze pan
  5. Add garlic and chile and let simmer.
  6. It is too thick you can regulate that with chicken stock.
  7. Season sauce to taste with salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning, Worcestershire, and a touch of red wine vinegar

Meanwhile….

  1. As you work on your roux and let your sauce simmer
  2. Put enough vegetable oil in a skillet to cover and heat over med high heat
  3. Put the fish in the eggwash and then the corn meal( I use shallow bowls for the egg and meal)
  4. Put on a wire rack so the fish does not become mushy.
  5. Fry in oil when oil reaches 360
  6. Return to clean wire rack  with towel underneath to catch oil.

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This recipe came about the way many of my ideas do: through the need for a meal with what is on hand.  In this case I was not even in my own kitchen.   My family got together with some wonderful friends after their long getaway, and we needed dinner.  Pork tenderloins, grapes, and wine were available.  I had made something similar before.  They had a wonderful rub from the CIA grilling cookbook available too(recipe to follow).

  • 2 pork tenderloins (This fed 5 people comfortably)
  •  3 tablespoons Albuquerque Dry Rub plus a tablespoon of flour mixed
  •  1 shallot minced
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 cups seedless grapes
  • pinch of rosemary and thyme
  • 1 cup of red wine (Cabernet or Zinfandel{nothing pink please!})
  • 2 tablespoons of wine
  1. Dry pork with a paper towel, and rub with rub plus flour(you can do this a hour ahead)
  2. Turn on oven to 350 degrees
  3. In a 3-4 qt oven safe saute pan heat up three tablespoons of canola oil over med-high heat
  4. When pan is hot, sear pork on all sides for a few minutes but one
  5. When flipping last side add shallots, grapes,  and garlic
  6. When the last side is browned, remove pork and deglaze pan with wine, scrap with a wooden spoon and place pork back top of grapes
  7. Place pan in oven and roast until an instant read thermometer reads 140° between 10 and 20 minutes
  8. Meanwhile setup an cutting board and make sure you have a sharp knife at your disposal, and turn on burner to med heat
  9. Remove  pan and place on burner removing pork and placing on cutting board to rest(Don’t worry I am giving you something else to do so you can’t cut in the pork too early)
  10. Add herbs to sauce , smash some of your grapes with wood spoon,  add butter and reduce till sauce is thicker stirring pretty constantly
  11. Slice pork in small medallions and serve sauce over them

ALBUQUERQUE DRY RUB

“This makes enough rub to flavor about 3 pounds of meat, fish, or poultry. You can make the chili powder or purchase a prepared chili blend. We suggest starting with whole spices for the best flavor, but you can always substitute ground spices if you prefer.”

1 tablespoon coriander seeds (or 1 teaspoons ground coriander)
1 tablespoon cumin seeds (or 2 teaspoons ground cumin)
6 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns (or 1 teaspoon ground pepper)

Heat a small saute pan over medium heat. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and toast, swirling the pan constantly, until the seeds give off a rich aroma, about 1 minute. Immediately transfer to a plate and let the seeds cool.

Transfer the seeds to a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Add chili powder, onion and garlic powder, oregano, salt, and pepper. Grind spices to an even texture.

The rub is ready to use now, or you can transfer it to a jar, cover tightly, and keep in a cool, dry cupboard or pantry for up to 1 month.

Makes 1/2 cup dry rub
Source: Grilling by Culinary Institute of America


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Some fall cleaning out of the freezer inspired me to make a creative dish with some leftover Cajun Pot Roast from a few month back.  I never really made tamale pie until recently at work and it inspired me as it was a crowd favorite.  Although this recipe is not rocket science and is no osso bucco it is satisfying and easy.

2-3 lbs leftover pot roast or store bought prepared cooked until shredable (I have made this dish with pork carnitas)

1/2 onion diced

1 can tomatoes with green chiles

1/2 cup of a savory smokey bbq sauce

couple dashes of a mexican style hot sauce

1.5 cup of masa or cornmeal

1.5 cup of water or Chicken stock plus 2.5 cups water

  1. Heat oven to 350
  2. In a oven proof saute pan or a cast iron skillet heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium heat.  Meanwhile, Combine stock, 2 tsp salt and masa in a bowl. Bring water to boil, and add cornmeal or masa mixture stirring constantly 3-4 minutes.  You can add some frozen corn and jalapeno to make it fun.
  3. Add diced onions and saute till slightly translucent
  4. Add beef and make sure all is pretty well shredded some clumps okay.
  5. Add Bbq and hot sauce and bring to a simmer….camelization might occur but don’t let it get too brown.  Season to taste( I use garlic powder,  Adobo with cumin,  chile powder).  Add chopped pepper or diced green chiles if you wanna make it interesting.
  6. Deglaze pan with drained diced tomatoes with green chiles and let simmer 10 minutes.
  7. Add masa mixture with a spoon shaped spatula to top of meat and tomato mixture.
  8. Cover with a 1/2 cup of your favorite cheese or a blend.  I like a monteray jack cheddar and cotija blend.
  9. Place in oven till golden brown about 30 minutes

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