Saturday, December 31, 2016

Cajun New Year's Faves

What better way to start off the New Year than with a New Year's brunch with family and friends. Here is my brunch buffet menu for 2017 and it is chocked full of delectable Cajun favorites.  I am also following the Cajun tradition of eating black eye peas for good luck and cabbage for good health, throughout the New Year.  And if it's New Years, cher, can Mardi Gras be far behind!


Bon appetit and Happy New Year!

(click on links to view recipes)


 

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And if you're wondering what to do with that ham bone in the freezer from Christmas dinner, here's a way to use it for your New Year's celebration.  Here's an easy, delicious recipe for slow cooker black-eyed peas that will have you adding this fabulous dish to your table at any time of year!

Slow Cooker "Good Luck" Black-Eyed Peas

1 pound dried black-eyed peas
1 tbs. vegetable oil
1 large red onion, chopped
1/2 cup each, red and green bell peppers, and celery
2 tsp.'s minced garlic
1 can diced Ro-tel tomatoes w/ green chilies, drained
1 quart water, (more, if needed)
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbs. Cajun seasoning
Few good shakes Tabasco
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. yellow mustard
1 cup ham, chopped
1 ham bone, (with some meat left on)
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 cup green onions, tops included, sliced

Saute the onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic, in the vegetable oil, until soft. (about 10 minutes) Combine all ingredients in slow cooker, except the parsley and green onions, and cook on high for 4 to 5 hours or on low, for 7 to 8 hours. Remove ham bone and add the parsley and green onions in the last 30 minutes, stir well, and maybe add a little more hot sauce.

 Happy 2017 Ya'll! Merci beaucoup for passing by!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Cajun Christmas Desserts and Drinks

Tis' the season and I'm busy getting ready for the holidays and wanted to share a few of my family's favorite Christmas dessert and drink recipes that will be on my menu this year. By popular demand, these recipes are all heavenly and are guaranteed to please your family and guests. Cest bon, cher and Happy Holidays, Ya'll!

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Easy Kahlua Cake w/ Chocolate-Rum Glaze

1 box of dark chocolate cake mix
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 (4 ounce) package of chocolate fudge pudding mix
4 eggs
1 cup brewed Community coffee, cooled
1/2 cup Kahlua
1 cup chopped pecans, for garnish


Mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and beat for 4 minutes on medium speed. Transfer batter into a lightly greased bundt pan and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes and then drizzle with glaze and garnish with pecans. Fab!
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 Chocolate-Rum Glaze


1 cup dark brown sugar
1 stick butter
1/4 cup rum
1/4 cup water

 





Melt butter in medium saucepan.  Add brown sugar, rum, and water, and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute or until thick.  Punch holes in cake and pour glaze evenly over cake.

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 Christmas Bread Pudding w/ Nanny's  Rum Sauce

1 16 oz. loaf French bread,  torn into small pieces
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 cups milk
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup sugar
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 tbs.'s brandy
Dash of salt
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
8 large eggs
Tear bread into small pieces in large bowl. Pour melted butter over bread pieces and toss to coat.

In large saucepan, combine cream, milk ,sugar, vanilla, brandy, salt, and nutmeg. bring to a simmer, over medium heat, and stir until sugar is dissolved, and remove from heat.

Whisk eggs until smooth in large bowl. Slowly add the hot milk mixture to eggs, whisking constantly.

Fold in the cranberries and white chocolate chips. Pour the custard mixture over the bread and let stand for 15 minutes.

Pour into a 13x9 inch greased baking pan and place in a larger pan, with enough water to reach halfway up the sides

Bake in a 325 degree preheated oven for 60 minutes, covering with foil, after 30 minutes. Serve with Nanny's Rum Sauce. (recipe below)

Nanny's Rum Sauce

3/4 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbs.'s flour
1 stick butter
2 tbs.'s dark rum
Combine flour, water, sugar, and butter in sauce pan. Heat on low and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and add vanilla and rum. Mix well and serve over bread pudding.

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 Creole Pecan Pie

3 eggs, lightly beaten
4 tbs.'s butter, softened
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup cane syrup or dark corn syrup
1 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp.salt
1 (9 inch) unbaked pie shell

Beat eggs, butter, and sugar together until thick. Add syrup, vanilla, salt, and pecans.

Mix well and pour into pie shell. Bake at 300 degrees for about 1 hour or until filling is firm. Place aluminum foil over top during the last 15 minutes, if browning too much.

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Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake




 Marguerite's Christmas Cookies

 













 Bourbon Brownies w/ Praline Icing













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And for a little lagniappe, here are a few of my favorite drinks to serve during the holidays. Enjoy! Cheers, cher!

Black Santa Martini


4 ounces coffee liqueur
2 ounces vodka
2 ounces peppermint schnapps
Crushed ice
Mint leaves or peppermint sticks for garnish

Place all ingredients in shaker with ice. Shake for a few minutes and pour into martini glasses. Garnish with mint leaves and/ or peppermint sticks. Serves 2  Out of this world!

Ultimate Cajun Eggnog

5 scoops French vanilla ice cream
5 scoops mocha ice cream
1 1/2 cups purchased eggnog
1/2 cup bourbon
1/2 cup brandy
2 tbs.'s orange liqueur
Chocolate shavings and grated nutmeg and/or cinnamon sticks for garnishes

Combine all ingredients, except garnishes, in blender and blend on lowest speed until the mixture is smooth and frothy. Pour into pitcher and sprinkle with garnishes. Fab!
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For my Christmas Dinner menu, click here.

Bon Appetit and Joyeaux Noel!!


Sunday, November 20, 2016

Cajun Thanksgiving Buffet

Almost time for Thanksgiving, ya'll!  After taking requests and deciding on a menu, I wanted to share a few of my family's favorite Thanksgiving "must haves" that I will be preparing and serving at this year's feast. And some guests will be bringing an appetizer or a dessert to share and I'm sure that I'll be adding a few more treats, so stay tuned. All fabulous and guaranteed to please your family and guests, cher! Bon appetit!


 Cajun Thanksgiving Buffet

Spicy Cajun Crab Dip



Creole Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms














Fresh Fruit Platter w/Pina Colada Dip







 



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Spicy Cajun Roast Turkey

1 10 to 12 lb. turkey
2 stalks celery, quartered
1 bunch green onions, sliced thin
1 onion, coarsely chopped
2 tsp.'s garlic, minced
Cajun turkey rub to taste (recipe below)
2 to 3 cups chicken broth
4 tbs.'s fresh thyme, chopped and divided
4 tbs.'s fresh parsley, chopped and divided
2 tbs.'s fresh sage, chopped and divided.

Wash turkey inside and out and pat dry with paper towels. Rub entire bird with the Cajun rub, including cavity.

Make a slit under the skin of the breast and stuff with garlic, salt, and half of the herbs. Stuff cavity with celery, remaining herbs, and onions.

Tie legs together, and tuck wings back, dot with butter, and place in a large shallow roasting pan with rack. Add 1 cup of chicken broth to the pan.

Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 3 to 4 hours (for unstuffed), and 3 (1/2) to 4 (1/2) hours for stuffed, or until a meat thermometer reaches 180 degrees.

Add more chicken broth, as needed during cooking and baste often with a turkey baster. Remove and discard vegetables in cavity and reserve pan drippings for gravy.

 Let turkey rest for 20 to 30 minutes before carving. Fab!

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Cajun Turkey Rub

2 tbs.'s salt
2 tbs.'s onion powder

2 tbs.'s garlic powder
2 tbs.'s paprika
1 tbs. cayenne pepper
1 tbs. black pepper
1 tbs. bay leaves, crushed 

1 tbs. each, dried thyme and sage

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Store in an airtight container and use as needed.

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 Mama's Cornbread Dressing


1 (9 inch) cornbread, crumbled
1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 lb. freshly ground pork
1 (1/2) cups beef broth or stock
1 cup each (onions, bell peppers, and celery), chopped
2 cloves garlic , minced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and Tabasco to taste
1 or 2 tbs.'s Cajun seasoning
2 tbs.'s Worcestershire sauce

In a large Dutch oven, season beef and pork with salt and Tabasco, and cook on medium heat till browned. Skim excess oil. Add the chopped vegetables and garlic and stir over medium heat for 10 minutes. Add beef broth or stock, Worcestershire sauce and seasonings, cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
In a large mixing bowl, combine dressing mix and cornbread and turn into a buttered 11x13 inch baking dish and bake for about 20 minutes or until browned. 
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Candied Sweet Potato Casserole

3 lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup dark rum
1 tbs. vanilla extract
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 tbs.'s butter


Topping:
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 tbs.'s butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 cups miniature marshmallows

Place sweet potatoes in large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and boil for 10 to 12 minutes or until tender. Drain and mash when cooled slightly.

In medium bowl, mix  brown sugar, eggs, evaporated milk, butter, rum, and 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice. Add to sweet potatoes and mix well with a fork.


Transfer to a 13x9 inch baking dish, dot with 2 tbs.'s butter, and cover with foil. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 30 to 40 minutes.


Meanwhile, make the topping. In medium bowl, mix flour, brown sugar, and  pumpkin pie spice. Cut in the butter with a fork and mix until crumbly. Stir in half of the pecans and marshmallows.

 




Remove casserole from the oven, and stir gently to blend. Top with remainder of the pecans and marshmallows and bake uncovered for 10 more minutes or until golden brown.

More Sides  (click on links for recipes)










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Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce 




Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Cake w/ Praline Glaze














Bananas Foster Cheese Cake






Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving! Merci beaucoup for passing by!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Cajun Game-Day Faves + Festival Fun

With football season in full swing in Cajun country, I wanted to share a few of my favorite game-day recipes with ya'll.. They are all "to die for", cher,  and I hope you'll give them a try at your next tailgating party or anytime you want a sinfully delicious treat. Bon appetit!

Spicy Cajun Meatball Sliders

2 lbs. lean ground beef
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs

1 egg, beaten
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tsp.'s garlic, minced

1 or 2  jalapenos, seeded and chopped
2 tbs.'s fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 or 2 tbs.'s. Cajun seasoning

Tabasco to taste
24 slider rolls

In medium bowl, combine eggs, milk, breadcrumbs, and Worcestershire sauce. In separate large bowl, combine meat with all remaining ingredients. Combine the egg mixture with the meat and mix well. Shape mixture into 2 inch balls. Arrange meatballs in baking pan and bake @ 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, turning once halfway. Drain and place one meatball on each slider bun and garnish with your favorite cheese and condiments.


Creamy Crawfish Dip














 Grilled Stuffed Jalapenos



Spicy Creole Jambalaya

Mini Muffalettas














Bayou Buffalo Wings



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Festival Fun

It's Fall festival time in Cajun country and we've been making the rounds and having so much fun.  Here's a little clip of Festival Acadiens with Wayne Toups and ZydeCajun rockin' the crowd on Sunday. There was a whole lotta dancin' going on, cher! Crank it up for this one and let the good times roll! Merci for passing by!


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Bayou Breakfast Burgers + Time for Downtown Alive

Happy Fall, Ya'll! Here's a Cajun favorite that is perfect for breakfast or anytime you want a sinfully delicious treat. These scrumptious burgers will please your family and guests and have them going back for more. Paired with my Spicy Cajun Fries, and my Bloody Mary Remoulade Sauce, I can assure you that they are worth blowing your diet for, cher! You can always dance the calories off!  Bon appetit!


 










For the burger:

2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 tbs. Tabasco sauce

1 tbs. liquid smoke
1 tbs. prepared horseradish
2 tbs.'s minced garlic

1/2 cup green onions, chopped fine
2  jalapenos, seeded and chopped

1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp.'s salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

6 large burger buns
3 tbs.'s butter, melted

Place meat and all other ingredients in large bowl and mix gently, but thoroughly. Shape meat mixture into 6 patties and cover with foil and chill for one or more hours.


Preheat gas grill on medium- high heat or charcoal grill on medium- high and cook for 7 to 10 minutes on each side, for medium. Melt cheese slices during the last 3 minutes. Baste buns with melted butter and grill to the side for 5 minutes to toast.

Garnish with bacon, tomato, and fried egg, and serve with with Bloody Mary Remoulade Sauce, recipe below.

For the sauce:

1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1 tbsp. chopped parsley
1 tbsp. vodka (optional)
1 tbsp. Creole mustard
1 tbsp. horseradish
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce
1/4 tsp. celery salt
Salt to taste

Combine in a medium bowl and chill until ready to serve.

For the fries:
 

4 large white potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch strips
2 tbs.'s olive oil
1 tbs. Cajun seasoning
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried parsley
Salt to taste






In large bowl, toss the potatoes in the olive oil to coat. Combine the spices and toss with the potatoes until evenly covered. Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray and arrange potatoes in a single layer. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Fab!

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Time for Downtown Alive

It's that wonderful time of year again for the Fall concert season of Downtown Alive in downtown Lafayette. This year's stellar line-up kicked off on Friday with Wayne Toups and ZydeCajun. Geaux Wayne! What a blast it was! For a complete schedule, click here.


Hope you all are having a fun and fab weekend! Merci beaucoup for stopping by!

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Cajun Brunch Favorites + Bayou Boogie

With recent house guests visiting form Florida, I wanted to prepare a special meal and decided to have a brunch gathering with guests bringing a summer salad or dessert.  Here are a few of my favorite brunch faves that I served and they are all out of this world! Guaranteed to please, cher! Links to recipes below.

Cajun Brunch Menu

 Cajun Bloody Mary's 

Crawfish Dip w/ Pastry Shells  *   Crab Stuffed Jalapenos 


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Bayou Boogie

Here's a little clip that I took of one of my "all time" favorite bands, playing one of my "all time" favorite songs.  The Red Beans and Rice Band Revue was rockin' the crowd at Festival Acadiens. Grab a cold drink and crank it up for this one, cher!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Cajun Fourth of July Favorites

Almost time for one of my favorite holidays and I've been tweaking my menu and planning our annual Fourth of July cookout. It's supposed to be hot and humid, so this will definitely be a poolside bash. And this is what I have on the menu, so far, and who knows what else I'll be adding! Plus, we'll be boiling some fabulous Spicy Cajun Boiled Crabs, since crab season is in full swing here in Cajun country. And when I tell you that it's all out of this world, then you know that I mean it, cher!  Bon appetit!

Cajun Jalapeno Cheeseburgers

2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 tbs. Tabasco sauce
1 tbs. liquid smoke
2 tbs.'s minced garlic
1 tbs. prepared horseradish
1 bunch green onions, including tops, chopped 
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp.'s salt
2 jalapenos, sliced
8 slices cheddar cheese

Melted butter
Hamburger buns

Place beef in large bowl and add all other burger ingredients, except jalapenos and cheese. Mix gently and form into 8 (1/4 lb.each) patties. Place one pattie on a plate and layer with jalapenos and cheese slice.  Top with another pattie and seal edges together. Grill directly on a medium hot grill for about 10 to 15 minutes on each side. Brush buns with melted butter and grill on indirect heat until toasted, while burgers are cooking. Garnish with your favorite hamburger fixins. FAB! Makes 4 (1/2) pound burgers.

(click on title to view recipes)  

Spicy Cajun Crab Dip











Bayou Buffalo Wings





Spicy Boiled Shrimp Salad















Deviled Egg Potato Salad











Bayou Bourbon Beans



























 Strawberry Lemonade

1 (1/2) cups sugar
4 cups water
2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled, washed, and cut in half
1 cup lemon juice, 4 large lemons

Combine 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in small saucepan and cook and stir on medium heat until dissolved. Set aside to cool.

Combine the remaining 3 cups water, 1/2 cup sugar, and the strawberries in blender and blend until smooth. Transfer to a 2 quart pitcher and add cooled sugar mixture and lemon juice. Stir well and add crushed ice. Garnish with lemon slices and strawberries.

Frozen Pina Coladas (my favorite)

1 1/2 oz. light rum
2 oz. cream of coconut
4 oz. pineapple juice
1 cup fresh frozen pineapple chunks
1 cup crushed ice

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth and creamy! Serve in your favorite cocktail glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge.




Wishing ya'll a very happy and safe 4th of July weekend!!! Merci beaucoup for passing by, cher!