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Old 01-29-2006, 12:10 PM   #1
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Cajun this weekend! 2/4/06

This is better if you cook it all afternoon. And so easy, even a petite enfant could do it.

1 lb dried red kidney beans
1 quart water
1 ham bone, or a couple of smoked ham hocks
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 t Tabasco
1 t salt
1/4 t thyme
1 bay leaf

Soak your beans. You can do the overnight way, but I never do. I follow the quick soak method that's written on the back of the bag.

Pour into a large heavy pot, and add everything else and let simmer until the beans are tender - at least 3 hours. Add water if you need to (water should barely cover beans).

Every time you go to check on your beans, stir and mash some of them against the side of the pot with your wooden spoon. Or you can take about a cup out, mash them, and add back to the pot until the whole mess thickens up. Around this time, take out your bone or hocks and remove the meat and add it back in.

forgot to say that I always use more Tabasco than this calls for!

Serve over hot white rice. Add a side of skillet-baked cornbread. If you can find good shrimp, boil a few for lagniappe (a term meaning "a little extra something") and place two on top of each serving.

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Old 01-29-2006, 01:17 PM   #2
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Alix, will the beans and rice recipe above do?

I was thinking that maybe we (i.e., you, actually) should split this thread and start a new one with an approp thread title to get the recipes going.

I've got recipes for shrimp creole, crawfish etouffe, and various gumbos if anyone's interested. Remember though that these are like meatloaf, spaghetti sauce, crab cakes, etc. - everyone has the "authentic" recipe.

Another thing to remember is that a lot of this stuff starts with a roux - equal parts fat and flour - and the "trinity" - diced onions, celery and bell pepper added to the roux after it turns the color you want (blonde to mahogany).
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Old 01-29-2006, 01:25 PM   #3
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Go for it mudbug!! I love most cajun/creole foods, except crawfish. I can't get past that one.
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Old 01-29-2006, 03:50 PM   #4
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I love the idea of going cajun! Hubby is cajun through and through. In fact, I've had to work hard to get him to branch out a bit - away from his cajun roots! But I must say, I love his cajun cookin'! We've been accumulating seafood for a seafood gumbo. As soon as I can find some fresh oysters, we'll be making a big ol' pot - can't wait! If anyone is interested, I'll post his recipe.
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Old 01-29-2006, 03:52 PM   #5
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callie, please do. I'm more of an enthusiastic fan than an expert.

Was checking my N'awlins cookbooks and found a recipe for oyster pie. Would hubby like that one?
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Old 01-29-2006, 04:00 PM   #6
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oh, yeah! though i'm just as crazy about oysters!!! love 'em - but they are really hard to find around here. we'll be going to "the city" (2 hours away) in a couple of weeks and i should be able to get some there, but i really didn't want to wait that long!

i know hubby doesn't have a written recipe for his gumbo - so as soon as i can get him to slow down and give me some quantities, etc., i'll post in the soup forum. unless someone wants to start a cajun one.....
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Old 01-29-2006, 04:19 PM   #7
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Oyster Pie

from the best-titled cookbook I have, by Marcelle Bienvenu, who often collaborates with Emeril: Who's Your Mama, Are You Catholic, and Can You Make a Roux?

Two 9-inch pie crusts
4 slices of thick bacon
1/4 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/2 t cayenne pepper
salt to taste
1 quart oysters, drained
melted butter

OK, I'm gonna adapt the instructions to avoid getting in copyright trouble:

Cook dat bacon, get da grease off, crumble into petit pieces, put to da side. Cook les oignons in zee fat until mos' soft. Add parsley and cayenne, zen take off from da fire and put ever' 'ting in Memere's good mixing bowl. Put in oysters and mix de whole mess togedda, chere. Butter dat bottom crust, den pour dat good mix inta it. Check you seasonings. (Slap dose kids' hands away.) Put dat top crust on, and t'row inta a 375 oven for about 30 - 40 minutes.

Dey say dis pie feeds six, but mo' like t'ree hungry Cajun boys, for true.
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Old 01-29-2006, 05:18 PM   #8
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Copied and pasted with thanks, mudbug!

I'm on my way to the soup section to post seafood gumbo.
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Old 01-29-2006, 05:46 PM   #9
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Cajun it is! My husband will be so happy! I'm going to make my seafood gumbo and red beans and rice. Recipes will follow shortly.
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Old 01-29-2006, 06:16 PM   #10
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RED BEANS AND RICE

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped bell peppers
Salt and cayenne, to taste
4 bay leaves
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 pound smoked ham hocks
1/2 pound boiled picked pork meat
1 pound dried red beans, rinsed and sorted over, soaked and drained
3 tablespoons chopped garlic
10 cups chicken stock
4 cups cooked white rice
1/4 cup chopped green onions

In a large saucepan, heat the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions, celery, and bell peppers to the saucepan. Season the vegetables with salt and cayenne. Saute the vegetables for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables start to wilt. Add the bay leaves, thyme, ham hocks, and pork meat and saute for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the beans, garlic, and stock or water. Bring the liquid up to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for about 2 hours, uncovered. Add more stock or water if the mixture becomes dry and thick. Use a wooden spoon to mash 1/4 of the mixture. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the beans are tender and creamy. Add more liquid if it is too thick. The mixture should be soupy, but not watery. Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. To serve ladle into bowls with rice. Garnish with green onions.

Yield: 8 servings
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Old 01-29-2006, 06:41 PM   #11
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dh doesn't like seafood
What would you suggest I could make for cajun this weekend?
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Old 01-29-2006, 07:08 PM   #12
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Would he like chicken and sausage jambalaya? Red beans and rice is yummy and you can add chunks of sausage or ham. I'll add some more non seafood ideas as I think of them.

edited to add a couple more:
We make alligator sauce piquante but you could substitute chicken.
We also make etoufees - always shrimp or crawfish - but you could substitute chicken and sausage there, too.
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Old 01-29-2006, 07:18 PM   #13
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now you got me thinking! Dirty rice is good. We like to make ours with lots of chicken livers but if you don't like that, you can use ground beef.
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Old 01-29-2006, 08:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corazon90
dh doesn't like seafood
What would you suggest I could make for cajun this weekend?
Canjun food can be as simple as red beans and rice, or more exotic like jambalaya (something like paella) or gumbo (which can range from a soup to a thick stew). It can have seafood, or not, and can have okra, or not. It's basically down-home back-woods Louisiana cooking using what you have on hand - no shrimp for a shrimp and okra gumbo, use chicken. Generally nothing fancy (fancy would be moving into the realm of city Creole cookery) but it will fill your belly and gladden your heart.

I'm not big on a lot of "packaged" stuff - but you might check your grocery store for packaged dry mixes from Zatarain's - or check their website for some ideas ... expecially ideas for Jambalaya. You can also search some sites a Google search came up with. While jambalaya recipes without seafood are more plentiful than gumbo recipes, you can check out some more recipes and get some ideas. You might also get some more ideas from looking over the recipes at Chef Paul Prudhomme's website.

Hope this gives you some ideas.

I'll probably be making shrimp and okra gumbo based on the recipe from the "The Prudhomme Family Cookbook". It's about as close as I have ever been able to come to the way my Aunt Margaret used to make it.
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Old 01-29-2006, 08:05 PM   #15
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Hey Callie,
Do you have a dirty rice recipe? My cousin in New Orleans has an awsome recipe if you need it. The way she described it last time sounds really tasty. I'll ask her to email me the recipe and I'll post it soon.
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Old 01-29-2006, 08:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by callie
Would he like chicken and sausage jambalaya?
I would! That sounds like a plan for me.




Quote:
We make alligator sauce piquante
I wonder where I could get some alligator meat?
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Old 01-29-2006, 08:18 PM   #17
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Thanks, Dina. Hubby makes awesome dirty rice...but like his seafood gumbo the recipe is in his head not on paper. If anyone wants his version, I'll have to "extract" it from him.
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Old 01-29-2006, 10:55 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corazon90
dh doesn't like seafood
What would you suggest I could make for cajun this weekend?
Here is a basic jambalaya recipe that I use. You can add what ever type of meat you and your family likes. I mainly use sausage or ham in mine. I tried it once with chicken, but I prefer the sausage.

Jambalaya

I have been craving this lately, so jambalaya is what I am going to make. I just made red beans and rice recently, so it is too soon to have that meal again.
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Old 01-30-2006, 11:11 AM   #19
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Hey mudbug, sorry I missed this split, MJ got it done for us. Thanks MJ! (I had to work last night) Can you post your shrimp creole recipe for me? I am going to go with either that or a Jambalaya. And I will just say right here that I know that my kids will go "Ewwwww!" but I am in anyway. I LOVE Cajun food. I live with spice wimps though.
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Old 01-30-2006, 11:16 AM   #20
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Jambalaya it is! Count me in.
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