Thursday, June 12, 2008

Foody Friday - Hubby's Favorite Foods

Well, as you know, I am not much of a cook. Since Jenny wants the theme this week to be Hubby's favorite foods, I asked him what to post. Born in New Orleans, most of his relatives are still in the south, in Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. Lee said that if he had to choose a last meal it would be Gumbo, Cornbread and Pecan Pie. He said if he came home and found this meal, he would probably die, so in fact, it would be his last meal! Har-dee-har-har. (I have OTHER skills!!) With help from my dear Mother-in-law, Marsha, (the BEST MIL you could ask for, by the way) here are some classic southern recipes.

Louisiana Seafood Gumbo (serves 4)
(Most Cajun recipes start with, "First you make a roux.")
4 large onions, peeled and finely chopped
1 stick of butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 quarts seafood stock
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 cup sweet green pepper, finely chopped
1 cup celery, finely chopped3 bay leaves
4 teaspoons dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1-1/2 to 2 cups cooked crabmeat1-1/2 cups fresh oysters
File powder, to taste
Cooked white rice

1. In a cast iron pot or skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions, and sauté until they are soft and translucent. Do not brown.
2. Slowly sprinkle the flour over the onion mixture and using a wooden spoon, stir it into the butter and onions. Continue to stir gently until the roux takes on a rich, dark brown color. This may take 20 to 30 minutes. Lower the heat if necessary to keep it from burning. (Do not leave unattended.)
3. While making the roux, heat the stock until it is very hot. When the roux has acquired a dark brown color, pour in the hot stock. (If you are using a skillet to make the roux, transfer it to a medium stock pot when it is done and then add the stock.) Stir until the roux and the stock are combined.
4. Add the other ingredients except for the seafood, file and rice. Stir and simmer very, very slowly for 2 hours. Then add the shrimp and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Add the crab and simmer a few minutes. Toss in the oysters and simmer until their edges curl, just a minute or two.
5. Serve hot in a big bowl with hot cooked rice. Sprinkle with file powder to taste and serve. Other types of gumbo are chicken and okra, shrimp and sausage, or other combinations of seafood, meat and fowl.

Cornbread

1 c. yellow corn meal
1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt1 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. milk1 egg
1 T. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c. plus 2 T. shortening

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Heat shortening in an iron skillet, muffin pan, or other baking pan. Combine corn meal, flour and salt in mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, milk and egg. Add baking powder and baking soda. Stir. Add 1/4 cup melted shortening, stirring constantly. Pour into hot pan, smoothing surface with spatula. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until golden brown on top. If desired, spread butter over top when removed from the oven.

Pecan Pie

4 eggs 1 c. brown sugar (dark or light)
3/4 c. light corn syrup (can use dark)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups pecans, chopped
9-inch unbaked pie shell
1/3 cup (about 25) nice looking pecan halves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Beat eggs well in a large bowl. Add brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, melted butter and vanilla to eggs, mix thoroughly. Sprinkle chopped pecans in pie shell. Pour egg mixture over pecans. Arrange pecan halves around edge of filling next to crust for decoration. Bake on middle rack of oven for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees and continue baking for 25 to 30 minutes, until set. (May take a few minutes longer.) Cool to room temperature and serve.

To be clear, my MIL prefers to serve french bread with her gumbo.

To be clear, I don't think I will be making a roux anytime soon but only because I don't want Lee to drop dead. And, um, what is FILE powder? Ok, so, honey? I am taking you out to a restaurant for Father's Day!

3 comments:

Lee Shelton, III said...

Sweetheart, just putting up with my son is enough. He has never had any problem finding something to eat. Keep loving him. Thanks, Dad Shelton

Lee Shelton IV said...

Yes, Dad is correct. I'm an ounce off the ol' pound. :)

BTW, Dear, filé (FEE-lay) powder, or gumbo filé as it's sometimes called, is a spice that flavors the gumbo and helps thicken it. Not many Yankees would know that, though, so don't feel bad. ;)

GrizzlyAdam said...

Wow - that sounds delish!!

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