Cooking Louisiana  -  Stuffing
Stuffing meat, especially poultry, is practiced throughout the world. Of course South Louisiana takes the well known practice and puts that ole' Cajun Punch to it. Vegetables are also stuffed along with seafood such as flounder and crab. We naturally stuff all this stuffed stuff in our mouths and when we're finished we're.... you guessed it, stuffed!

In general stuffing is looked at in two manners. One is a sort of dressing that is put into a larger piece of meat such as stuffing a turkey. The other is taking a mixture of the base meat such as crab and making a dressing like mixture to put into the original mold (like crab shell tops) and serving it like that. The same holds true for vegetables such as eggplant and mirleton.

Both methods are the same with the exception that the molded stuffings are usually baked in the oven with a little bread crumbs. The other stuffing method (in the meat) is just put into cavities, either natural or made by you, and cooked all together.

I must warn you (if you don't already know) that cooking stuffed things, such as a stuffed turkey, demands greater cooking times than those generally accepted unstuffed. Popular here now is a turducken. This is the ultimate stuffed dish besides stuffed eggplant and crab. It's dressing stuffed in a duck that is stuffed in a chicken that is stuffed in a turkey. All the birds have been de-boned. This is one big mass of meat and is one big bunch of GOOD!

There is another method of stuffing used with thin layers of meat such as round steak, turkey breast and venison backstrap. The method consists of laying the meat out, putting a thin layer of stuffing on it and rolling it into a tube shape. With tough cuts of beef the tube is generally "barded". Barding is wrapping the meat with bacon (the popular way) and tying it with cooking twine. This allows the fat to moisturize and tenderize the naturally tough meat.

Stuffed flounder is usually done with crab meat and the recipe section will have that and other stuffed stuff!