Countdown to Fat Tuesday, Part Deux: Dirty Rice

March 7, 2011

Dirty Rice

As I was reading through the recipe for Smothered Rabbit yesterday, I decided I wanted to go beyond the basic white rice and try making dirty rice. Usually I fry the livers and giblets and serve them as an appetizer with a bit of creole mustard sauce, but since I had made rabbit stock and had 2 cups leftover (just the perfect amount for the dirty rice), I thought I’d try my hand at this Cajun classic.

Here’s a bit of a shocker — as much Cajun and Creole food as I’ve eaten over the years, I’m not sure I’ve ever had a homemade dirty rice made with the giblets. The old standbye was Zatarain’s dirty rice with sausage thrown in.

So back to the rice. If I don’t use parts of an animal, I tend to throw them back into the freezer for later use. (more…)

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A Little Cajun to Celebrate Mardi Gras

March 7, 2011

Smothered Rabbit

Yesterday, I decided we were way overdue for a rabbit dinner. Rabbit is one of my favorite meats, probably because I don’t get it very often. Since we’re coming up on the Mardi Gras grand finale, I decided to pull out a Cajun recipe from Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen, Smothered Rabbit. The recipe was très simple – pan fry the rabbit, make a dark rous with the leftover oil and flour, add a bit of celery and onion, and mix it all into a boiling pot of stock. So off to the store I went to pick up the vegetables, along with a little TurboDog and Dixie beers to round out the perfect Cajun meal.

On the way back from the store, I decided instead of serving this with white rice or mashed potatoes as suggested, I would whip up a bit of dirty rice instead, which was out – of – this – world! (more…)

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Cookbook Review: Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen

November 14, 2010

Crawfish Etouffe

Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen was the cookbook I learned to cook from. Don’t get me wrong – I learned how to cook from my family, but this was one of the first cookbooks I ever used, which explains why I don’t think taking two hours to make dinner is a bad thing. The recipes in this book are delicious; I’ve never had a bad meal from Chef Paul. However, the first time I made the Cajun Shepherd’s Pie from this book, it took four hours. That wasn’t because I was in middle school, just honing my knife skills. It still takes me quite a bit of time (it might have been because I had an aversion to vegetables, and I minced the heck out of the ones that went into the meal). But as anyone who has ever had a slice of this pie can attest, it is completely and totally worth it. (more…)

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Quick and Easy: Steak, Baked Potato, Garlic Bread

September 15, 2010

Steak on the grill

Steak, baked potato, garlic bread. It was one of the first meals I learned to cook, and throughout middle school, this was often my late lunch. I eventually branched out into chicken, baked potato, and garlic bread, but I hold a special affinity for a bacon-wrapped fillet.

This meal comes together in no time, because there’s not much to it. You can grill or broil the steak, the baked potato can be cooked in the microwave, and the garlic bread can either be baked (in which case, it takes the longest of anything to cook) or you can simply broil it quickly at the end.

Want the details? (more…)

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