Bonjour my fellow home chefs!
What ch'all up too?
There is a point that I didn't discuss in earlier newsletters
about home cooking, and that's taking a dish already cooked and
transforming it into another. Well, I sort of touched on it with the
Killer Omelet deal but we need to expand on that don't you
Let's look at some options using simple leftover cooked dishes.
Freeze your leftovers but don't let what you have in the freezer just
sit there... use it!
Meatloaf - chop it up and add cooked carrots or whatever...
Baked Ham - Chop the rest and use it in fresh salads. You can freeze
ham for a while so save it.
Baked Turkey - oh cher' - turkey gumbo mai cher'.
I'm going to interrupt myself, which I know is very rude but I
can handle it, don't worry. My eldest daughter had a smoked turkey
in her freezer she got from robbing a bank or something. Anyway, we
planned a gumbo for a family gathering. We normally do the chicken
and sausage thing (ho-hum). I plucked the meat off of the bird,
roasted the bones, added some sausage and it was a "done
deal"... For you Cahjas, I scooped a pot of gumbo on the side
when it was done and added a quart of oysters and let that cook for
another 10 minutes. Ah'm not gonna tell you how "bad" dat
was! All I ate was two bowls... I was polite; you know....share wit
you friends. Problem was, I watched that pot more than I watched the
BTW... the misspellings of words above are meant to phoneticize
(phonetically manipulate)... the Cajun slang. If you don't
understand, I understand.
Baked chicken...(I'm thinking gumbo at first naturally), but,
de-bone, add some onions, garlic, veggies, a little pasta, or, throw
it in a fresh salad.
Beef or Pork roast - Beef or pork stew...po-boys
Boiled Seafood...I could go on for days about that one...
My point.. take a simple dish to create a more complex one; it
stretches the food which directly equates to money honey! Cook more
than you normally do and you've got a backup ingredient.
Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
At the same Turkey Gumbo gathering I used a recipe from my
sis-in-law's mother for "from scratch" homemade ice cream.
No current fancy machines, no box ingredients... the real deal! Old
time honey... you got it? Rich as it could be and you can't eat too
much it is so rich.
Many of us folks remember the hand crank ice cream machines... It
was fun because all the kids took a turn for a few minutes and the
next one would come along to grab the crank. Remember the "real
wood" ice cream buckets with the metal strapping? Today they're
plastic for the most part but the the result is all pretty much the
same. Here's the recipe... Click
I emailed everyone about the Jambalaya contest that
Zatarain's was putting on. I did a similar contest for you
subscribers to receive a
Jambalaya kit and all I got was one recipe. So now I have three kits
and nowhere to ship them; ain't that a shame? You get a Chef's hat,
an apron, a wooden spoon and two boxes of jambalaya mix. And
they all have Zatarain's written on them.
Here's the deal...
I'll take the first 10 recipes sent by you (one per person), and,
I'll draw names and the three names drawn will get the kits... all
free, no shipping, no nothing. I don't get squat out of this. It's
bad when you have to beg people to take something for free!
Watch the local Feed & Seed stores that carry
garden plants. I bought
some bay leaf trees in September last year. You can get the small
ones for like $6.00 around here. They're only six inches tall so
what I do is re-pot them and take care of them. They just need water
and can handle a freeze so it's no big deal. In about two years you
have a tree big enough to pick leaves off of. A four foot tree will
cost you around $40. Makes a good (and cheap) Christmas gift that
keeps on giving.
most of you slice tomatoes. My knives are pretty sharp but they're
not at "chef's standards" for the most part. Anyway, to
slice a tomato with ease use a serrated knife. I use a bread knife;
Hull Pea update
I've gotten several emails from folks looking
for those precious Purple Hull Peas. You can find them at some
vegetable stands fresh frozen. They can sometimes be found at your
grocer in the frozen food section. You can also get them in the can.
I just cooked some Bush's the other day and they were great!
can actually find the Bush's brand at Wal-Mart. If they don't have
them look in other stores or find the Wal-Mart grocery manager and
tell him/her to get them.
Allen's also carries
Purple hulls but it's a little difficult to find on their site.
Here's a link where you can order them online. Click
Purple Hull Peas and Ham Hocks recipe. Click
Some of you would like to not only
have some older recipes but read about the unique stories of
food in South Louisiana. We'll I've got an old book for you. It's a
Time-Life series book first published in 1971. The name of the book
is American Cooking: Creole and Acadian and can be
found on Amazon. Click
here... 208 pages, packed full of beautiful photos, great
recipes along with South Louisiana stories and facts to blend it all
Now you may think "What could
Time-Life get right about a book on South Louisiana food?".
Well, I'll say this. Marcelle
Bienvenu was the local consultant on the book. That fact alone
lends credibility extraordinaire to the writing.
is a Recipe Book that accompanies this fine book. I don't have that
book and am looking for it.
Oyster Season Cometh
you pass through Houma, La. you need to go by Wilson's Oysters,
S Van Ave. (985)
it up on Google maps and call them to get your "better
why I'm writing about this. When I was a few days younger in Houma
(12 to 15years old) than today my daddy and I would fish oysters.
The fishing (picking) process involved getting into the
"big" 16' hull with a 10' pirogue in it (not towing it) at
6:00 in the morning. More empty sacks than we needed and a few
hammers and oyster knives came along not to mention the crackers and
Vienna sausage. He knew where the good oyster beds were (mostly from
our neighbor Mr. Price... they were his beds and gave us permission
to pick (I assume). Fishing good oysters is best done at low tide...
you see where the most population is; that is... they show
themselves. I'm in the pirogue picking clusters and he's in the
"big boat "culling" (knocking the trash shells and
small oysters off)... we're getting the big stuff.
So, we would
come back home (barely... because of the weight) and start shucking.
It was nothing for us to shuck 8 to 10 sacks in a few hours. In the
freezer they go...
Now that you know that story let's get back to
Wilson's. You normally get Wilson's oysters here in Lafayette and
they're small. Small oysters are good for eating raw and for
jambalaya's (if that's what you like). If you go to Wilson's
personally you can get "Select" which are a larger oyster.
I like big oysters because I like the oyster flavor.
Recipes on your PDA
page on this site is formatted such that you just scroll down to see
all the recipes without moving all around a screen. So, you have all
the recipes at your fingertips, and in a simple form...
Look for the greens, watch for the root crops...
fresh carrots, fresh beets, etc. There's nothing better than fresh.
That's it for now folks... be well and happy
cooking! I'll be back in the near future.
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