Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pumpkin Gingerbread w/ Caramel Rum Sauce + More Bayou Boogie

With our first cool front blowing into Cajun country this morning, I was in the mood to bake and for a little taste of Fall. Here's a heavenly treat that will go well with your morning coffee or perfect for anytime you have an ahnvee for a little something sweet. It combines two of my favorite flavors, pumpkin and gingerbread, with an added taste sensation of a decadent caramel/rum sauce! Out of this world, cher! Enjoy!

Pumpkin Gingerbread w/ Caramel Rum Sauce
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp.'s baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp.'s ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup pumpkin, canned or fresh
1/2 cup Pet milk
1/4 cup molasses
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract


In medium bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. In large bowl, combine brown sugar and softened butter and beat with an electric mixer, on medium speed, until well blended and creamy. Add pumpkin, milk, molasses, eggs, and vanilla, and continue to beat, until well mixed. Gradually add the dry ingredient mixture, and beat until combined. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 13 x 9 inch baking pan. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes. Cut into squares and serve with Caramel Rum Sauce. Cest bon, cher!


Caramel Rum Sauce

1 cup whipping cream
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tbs.'s light or dark rum
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped pecans


Bring whipping cream to a light boil in large saucepan, over medium heat, stirring often. Add brown sugar and continue to cook for about 5 minutes, or until dissolved and smooth, stirring often. Remove from heat and stir in rum, butter, pecans, and vanilla. Let cool for about 10 minutes. Ladle over pumpkin gingerbread. Bon Appetit! 

I am sharing this at~


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More Bayou Boogie



I've had a request for some more bayou boogie, more specifically, for some bayou boogie from Festival Acadiens et Creole, which is right around the corner! One of our biggest and best festivals, Festival Acadiens et Creole, celebrates all things Cajun and Creole, and has been called by many, a Cajun Woodstock. This year's festival will be held on October 8, 9, and 10, beginning in Downtown Lafayette on Oct. 8, and continuing on in Girard Park, on October 9 and 10. Here's a little clip that I took at last year's festival of one of my favorite bands, Nathan and the Zydeco Cha Chas, just to give you an idea of how much fun is coming right up! For a complete schedule , click here. Let the good times roll, cher!

Nathan and the Zydeco Cha Chas

Monday, September 27, 2010

Grilled Stuffed Jalapenos + Cajun Tailgating Fun

We had an absolute bon' ton' at the Ragin' Cajuns tailgating party on Saturday! The stage was set at Cajun Field for an afternoon of pure indulgence in the best tailgating food than you could ever imagine. As far as the eye could see, there were Cajun men everywhere, grilling and frying up their best stuff and cooking succulent side dishes, jambalaya, and gumbo, too. It was a bit warm and humid, and by the time I made my way around the huge tailgating area, I was working up quite a sweat! And getting full too, as I was offered a taste and a beer at each grill, but had to stop eating and switch to water, half way through!  It was a blast! Here were a few of my favorites.







This guy was grilling some Andouille sausage and boudin. Cest bon, cher!





This one was frying some chicken wings and they were finger lickin' good!









This one was grilling some huge steaks and the smell was making my mouth water. To die for, cher!









These two guys were cooking a chicken and sausage gumbo and some smothered potatoes. Both were out of this world!







These two were grilling up a big batch of wings with this pork jambalaya on the side. Divine!










And last, but not least,  were these sinfully delicious grilled, stuffed jalapenos and some fresh pork sausage!

These two guys were kind enough to share the recipe with me. So quick and easy, too.
Warning: These are addictive! Fabulous!

Grilled Stuffed Jalapenos
12 large jalapenos, seeded and cut in half
1 lb. bacon, cut in thirds
4 ounces cream cheese
4 ounces of grated pepper jack cheese
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup onions, chopped fine
Salt to taste

Combine the cream cheese, shredded cheese, onions,  and salt in a medium sized bowl. Mix well. Fill the jalapenos and wrap each one with a bacon strip. Secure with toothpicks.  Grill on medium hot grill for about 10 to 12 minutes,  or until bacon is crisp.
Hot, spicy, and so delicious! Bon Appetit!

Wishing ya'll a wonderful week, filled with good times! Merci beaucoup for coming by!


Friday, September 24, 2010

Another Fabulous Cajun Weekend !

It's Friday and that means it's time for the weekend and some good ole Cajun fun! Since getting off from work at noon on Friday's is a tradition in Lafayette, for many, the fun starts with a fabulous Cajun lunch at one of our, over 300 wonderful restaurants, and that number doesn't include fast food. Today's pick was Dwyer's Cafe', in downtown Lafayette. T.G.I.F., cher!


Dwyer's is a landmark in Lafayette and has been serving up delectable Cajun cuisine for over 40  years! Their delicious daily buffet is always tempting , but I was in the mood for a shrimp poboy, after sticking to my veggie diet all week. Oh cest bon, cher!


And for those of you who's mouths are watering over this scrumptious looking poboy, I am re-posting my Shrimp Poboy recipe for those of you who might want to make one of these at home or add it to your Cajun recipe file. And please try my Poboy Spread recipe, too!

Marguerite's Creole Poboy Spread
Combine:
1/2 cup light mayo
1/4 cup creole or dijon mustard
1 tbs. ketchup
1 tbs. pickle relish
1 tbs.. horseradish
few shakes sea salt
few shakes Tabasco

Stir until well blended and chill for 30 minutes, while frying shrimp.

Fried Shrimp Poboys
1 lb. large, peeled and diveined shrimp (24 ct.)
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, combined with 1/2 tsp. black pepper
4 eggs
1 cup Pet milk
1/4 tsp. salt
2 cups flour
2 cups fine French bread crumbs
Vegetable oil for frying

2 loaves French bread, 2 tomatoes, sliced, shredded lettuce, Creole poboy spread

Season shrimp with the pepper, rubbing on all sides.
In shallow bowl,whisk the eggs, then add the Pet milk and the salt.
Spread the flour on one cookie sheet and the bread crumbs on another.
Roll shrimp in the flour, then in the egg mixture.
Then roll the shrimp in the breadcrumbs.
Arrange on large platter and chill for 15 minutes.

Place vegetable oil about 3 inches deep in a large, heavy skillet. Heat until oil reaches 375 degrees. Deep fry the shrimp, in batches, turning after 3 minutes, on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.

Brush inside of each loaf with my Creole Spread, and add lettuce and tomato. Arrange, 12 on each poboy and cut in halves. Serves 4 Enjoy!

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T.G.I.F.
Then tonight I will be joining friends at Downtown Alive for the weekly T.G.I.F Block Party and an awesome concert at Parc International . The infamous Cowboy Mouth will take the stage around 6:00 pm. If you've never seen this hard rockin', high energy band, you're in for a treat!


Tomorrow afternoon, we'll be tailgating at Cajun Field, and rooting for the Ragin' Cajuns when they take on Middle Tennessee. Game time 6:00 pm. Geaux Cajuns! There will be scrumptious food galore, with tons of gumbo, jambalaya, chili, and a whole lotta grilling going on! Woo Hoo!


And on Sunday, we'll be heading over to the Sugarcane Festival in New Iberia for a bon' ton' and MORE delectable Cajun food, great live Cajun and Zydeco music, and lots of festivities! Come on out and get into the festival spirit and enjoy everything that this festival has to offer. For a complete schedule, click here.


What are your plans for the weekend ? Whatever they include, I hope that ya'll have a fantastic, fun-filled time! Cheers and merci beaucoup for stopping by!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Spicy Cajun Crab Cakes w/ Seafood Bechamel Sauce + An Award


I recently had a lovely lunch with my dear daughter at Cafe' Ahnvee, a quaint little Cajun restaurant that specializes in seafood. It was our first time to dine here, but it won't be our last! I ordered the Crab Cakes w/ Seafood Bechamel Sauce, with a side of Seafood Eggplant Stuffing and house salad.  She ordered the Yellow Fin Tuna Steak, with Sweet Potato Fries and a house salad. All worth every calorie, cher! I enjoyed this sinfully delicious dish, so much,  that I decided to attempt to replicate it at home. It was really quite easy to make, as I had all of the ingredients on hand. I try to keep a good stash of crabmeat, shrimp, and crawfish, in my freezer, at all times! I am totally addicted to seafood and couldn't live without it! Cest bon,cher! Enjoy!


Spicy Cajun Crab Cakes


1 lb. lump crabmeat, picked over
2 tbs.'s minced onion
2 tbs.'s minced celery
2 cloves garlic, minced 
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tbs. butter
1 egg lightly beaten
1/4 cup light mayo
1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1 tbs. lemon juice
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. or more, Cajun seasoning
Few shakes Tabasco
Paprika
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Saute the onions, celery, and garlic in the butter until tender and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Allow to cool slightly, and stir in the crab, egg, mayo, bread crumbs, thyme, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce. Season with Cajun seasoning and Tabasco and shape into patties. Coat patties with flour and sprinkle with paprika. Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet and saute the crab cakes for 5 to 7 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

Seafood Bechamel Sauce

2 tbs.'s butter
2 tbs.'s all purpose flour
1 cup warm milk 
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
Salt and Tabasco to taste
1 tbs. chopped fresh flat leafed parsley
1 cup cooked shrimp or crawfish tails

Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour, until well blended. Continue to cook,  stirring constantly, until a blonde roux forms. Gradually stir in the warm milk, and continue cooking and stirring until sauce begins to boil and thicken. Lower heat, add cooked seafood and seasonings, and simmer over very low heat for 5 minutes.
Serve over warm crab cakes for a divinely delicious treat! Enjoy!

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Versatile Blogger Award

I recently received The Versatile Blogger Award from one of my favorite blog buddies. Merci beaucoup to Drick @ Drick's Rambling Cafe' for this very special award! Drick is a master par excellence, of cooking and grilling Southern food and his fabulous cookbook has become one of my kitchen Bibles! Please pay him a visit, when you have time. I am totally  honored and think that being versatile isn't everything in life, but it sure helps! Now, for the easy part! In order to accept this award, I must write seven things about myself.

1. I once was a vegetarian and still love to eat vegetarian meals, in between seafood, that is.

2. Every now and then, I like to take a nap, about twice a year.

3. I'm a Virgo, to the max and like everything in it's place.

4. My favorite desserts are Chocolate Fudge Pecan Pie and Vanilla Bread Pudding w/  Praline Sauce.

5. I'm not a morning person, and never see the sunrise.

6. My biggest pet peeves are rude people and crazy drivers.

7. Dancing is my favorite activity, but I guess you already knew that.

Now, for the hard part. I am supposed to pass this award along to 10 other bloggers.  Since I know so many more than ten bloggie friends who deserve this award, it's hard to just pick ten. But, here goes. They are all very versatile and wonderful and I hope that you will visit them as soon as you can! Congrats to all!












Hope that you all are having a wonderful week! Merci beaucoup for stopping by!

HAPPY FALL YA'LL!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Cajun Breakfast Casserole + Bayou Blues

Here's another Cajun breakfast dish that is always a favorite at my house and is a meal in itself! I love to cook a big breakfast on Saturday mornings, especially when it starts getting a little cooler outside. It's savory, spicy taste is just irresistible and will have you going back for seconds! It can be assembled the night before and popped into the oven in the morning. So easy and perfect for a brunch buffet, too! Cest bon, cher!




Cajun Breakfast Casserole

3 tbs.'s butter, melted
1 pkg. (10 count)  refrigerated buttermilk biscuits or homemade
1/2 lb. fresh sausage (hot or mild),  casing removed
1/2 cup each, onions and bell peppers, chopped
1/2 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup shredded cheese (I used Colby/Jack)
6 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup half n' half
1 tsp. Cajun seasoning
Salt to taste



Prepare biscuits, according to package directions. Pour melted butter into a large casserole dish to coat bottom and sides. Break biscuits into pieces on bottom of casserole dish.

Brown sausage in large skillet and drain. Add onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and jalapeno pepper and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring often.  Add Worcestershire sauce and parsley. Stir and set aside. In large bowl, beat eggs and add Cajun seasoning. Add half and half and mix well. 

  Add the shredded cheese to the sausage mixture, mix well and spread evenly over top of biscuit layer. Pour egg mixture over the sausage/cheese mixture. Cover with foil and bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil sprinkle with extra cheese, if desired,  and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until set. Serves 6 Bon appetit!



Serve with Mama's Cornmeal Biscuits (click here for recipe), fresh fruit, and your favorite coffee! Enjoy!


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Tonight I will be going to a birthday bash for an old friend. We will be dining out at Artmosphere Bistro and Art Gallery and then staying for an awesome bayou blues show with Henry Gray and the Cats. Henry Gray is a Louisiana legend and has been entertaining blues fans for over 40 years! Just to give you a sneak peak,  here is a little clip that I took of him and his fabulous band, playing at Downtown Alive. Grab a cold drink, and crank it up for this one, cher! Cheers!

Henry Gray and the Cats


Hope you all are having a wonderful, fun-filled weekend! Merci beaucoup for coming by!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Chocolate Chip - Pecan Pie Bars + A Cajun Waltz

It was my turn to host my Genealogy Club meeting and these delectable Chocolate Chip-Pecan Pie Bars seemed like a perfect choice, for a dessert to go with some good strong Community coffee. This great recipe was adapted from the "Something to Talk About " cookbook, compiled by the Junior League of Lafayette. One bite of these sinfully delicious treats will send you into orbit, cher! Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip-Pecan Pie Bars

1 1/2 cups flour
3 tbs.'s brown sugar
1 stick butter
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 tbs.'s melted butter
1/4 tsp.salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Note: I used pecan halves, but chopped work better.


Combine flour and 3 tbs.'s brown sugar in medium bowl. Cut in the stick of butter, until crumbly. Press into a buttered 8x11 inch baking pan. Bake in a preheated , 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.



 In large bowl, combine the eggs, corn syrup, 1/2 cup brown sugar, pecans, 2 tbs.'s butter, vanilla, salt, and chocolate chips and mix well. Pour over baked crust and bake for 20 to 25 more minutes. Cool completely and cut into bars.


And if you really want to kick up the decadence level a notch, you could drizzle these with my Chocolate Amaretto Sauce! My son's favorite!

 Chocolate Amaretto Sauce
4 (1 oz.) squares semisweet chocolate
1 tbs. butter
6 tbs.'s whipping cream
4 tbs.'s Amaretto

Combine first three ingredients in saucepan and stir and cook over low heat, until melted and smooth.
Remove from heat and stir in Amaretto.  They went really fast!


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More Downtown Alive!
I've had a few more requests for more videos of the kick-off  for the Fall Downtown Alive concert series. Here's another little clip that I took of the high spirited crowd, dancing to a lovely Cajun waltz, played by the fantastic band, Feufollet. This one's for you, Daniel! Cheers, cher!


Hope that ya'll are having a great week! Merci beaucoup for stopping by!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Bayou Teche Jambalaya + Downtown Alive

Here's another fabulous Cajun favorite that will have you going back for more, cher! A dear friend from New Iberia, who lives on the Bayou Teche, (Tesh), gave me this recipe, many moons ago.The smoky flavor of the Andouille sausage and ham combines nicely with the Cajun "trinity" and blackeye peas, for a real spicy flavor treat that you will not soon forget! Oh, cest bon! Enjoy!



Bayou Teche Jambalaya

1 pound andouille (or other smoked sausage),
sliced thin, then cut in half
1 cup cubed ham
1 large onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbs.'s Creole or Cajun seasoning
2 cups chicken stock or broth
1 cup, uncooked rice
1 cup cooked blackeye peas
1 tsp. yellow mustard
1/4 cup green onion
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Few shakes Tabasco

Brown the sausage and the ham in large Dutch oven, over medium heat. Drain excess oil, leaving a small amount. Add "the trinity" and Creole seasoning, and cook, stirring, until vegetables are soft. (about 10 minutes) Add the chicken stock, rice, black-eye peas, mustard, and Tabasco, and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower heat, stir and cover, and cook for 20 to 25 minutes until liquid is absorbed. I love to serve this fabulous dish with a big salad and a hot crusty loaf of French bread. And maybe a nice glass of wine, too! Bon Appetit!

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T.G.I.F- Time for Downtown Alive!

We had an absolute blast, last night, at the kick off for the 27th annual, Fall Downtown Alive, concert series. For those of you who are new to my blog, Downtown Alive is a giant T.G.I.F. Block Party, held every Friday evening, at Parc International, in downtown Lafayette, during the Fall and Spring seasons. It's a wonderful way a way to unwind, after a stressful work week, and a great way to visit with family and friends and enjoy great live music, dancing, and of course, great food!

This week's band was the fabulous "Feu Foullet", a traditional Cajun group, with an emphasis on modern trends. The crowd was more than ready to dance, after the long hot summer, and with such a fantastic line up, this fall's DTA promises to be the best, yet! When our weather cools down, here in Cajun country, our music heats up! And yes, we do this every Friday evening!


The mood was exuberant and it was great to see friends that I hadn't seen all summer.
You see just about everyone that you ever knew. Let the good times roll, cher!


This was a dancin' crowd and as usual, a whole lotta, nitty-gritty dancin' going on!
So much fun, and great exercise, too! I took several other videos and will post them soon.


But since I'm posting from the public library, due to my internet connection being down, I chose the shortest one. This song was a fast two step, more like a polka! Really gets the blood pumping and very aerobic!

video


Hope that ya'll are having a fantastic, fun weekend, too! Merci beaucoup for coming by!
I will be around to visit ya'll, just as soon as I get my internet connection back! Cheers!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A Real and Virtual Blast + French Rockin' Boogie !

First, I'd like to extend a warm welcome to all of my new followers! Thanks so much for coming by and for all of your lovely comments! The weekend was an absolute blast, on the swamp, and at the virtual bloggie BBQ , hosted by Karen G. She was the hostess with the mostess, and did an excellent job of making everyone feel at home with her warm, Southern-like hospitality. Thanks again, Karen, for a great party! I hereby pronounce you and all of my followers, "Honorary Cajuns"! All that is required to become an honorary Cajun is to love the Cajun food and music! Welcome to Cajun country! Lassiez les bon temps rouler!
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We spent two days at a friend's camp in Henderson, Louisiana on the beautiful Atchafalaya Basin, better known as the Henderson Swamp. There is no end to the fun that one might find on the levee, on any given weekend, and this past weekend was no exception. We started out at Basin Landing for a few cold ones at Turtle's Bar.


It was a beautiful day on the water, cooler and sunny, and less humid than usual. The boaters were out in full force. This party barge was really rockin'!


We had a sinful lunch at Pat's Restaurant. I couldn't resist having an oyster poboy.


There was a whole lotta grilling going on, with all of the trimmings, too! Le bon manger!




I made a big pot of Cajun rice dressing and a bowl of Creole potato salad.



Click here for rice dressing and BBQ recipes



Click here for potato salad and grilled corn on the cob recipes


On Sunday, we headed over to the Sunday afternoon dance, at Whiskey River Landing.


The place was packed to the gills and the crowd was really boogie-ing down to the spicy sounds of Geno Delafose and French Rockin' Boogie! One of my favorite bands and so much fun!
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Here's a little clip that I took of this very popular band, movin' the crowd! The crowd was going wild and the dance floor was very crowded! But, my camera's batteries went out just when the patrons were starting to dance ON the bar! I'll make sure to get one, next time! You can catch some more of my music videos on Youtube @ TheBayougirl. Crank it up for this one, cher, and let the good times, roll!


Geno Delafose and French Rockin' Boogie



Hope ya'll have a wonderful week! Merci beaucoup for stopping by!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Creole Stuffed Bell Peppers + Mama's Buttermilk Cornbread

Here's a twist on an old Cajun favorite that I started making when my children were young and loved the stuffing in this classic Cajun dish, but didn't care to eat the peppers. I found that if I cut the peppers into smaller pieces and layered the stuffing with cheese, that they loved it! I also tweaked it a little bit and added tomatoes and corn, giving it a Creole taste. Cest bon, cher!
Bon Appetit!


Creole Stuffed Bell Peppers

 1 lb. lean ground beef
4 large green bell peppers, seeded, and cut in half, and then cut in thirds
1/2 cup each, onions, bell peppers, and celery
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tbs. creole seasoning
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup whole kernel corn
1 can Rotel tomatoes and green chilies
2 small (8 oz) cans "roasted garlic" tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, (divided)
6 strips bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1 cup cooked rice

Par boil bell peppers in salted water, for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside. Brown ground beef with creole seasoning, in large skillet on medium heat and drain excess oil. Add the onions, peppers, celery, and garlic, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add Worcestershire sauce, Rotel tomatoes, and corn, and mix well. Add tomato sauce, chili powder, parsley, and thyme, and mix well, and cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Add a few shakes of Tabasco, stir, and gently fold in the cooked rice until well blended.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of a lightly oiled 13x9 inch baking dish with the peppers. Spoon one half of the stuffing on top of the peppers. Spread one half of the cheese on top of the stuffing mixture. Repeat with second layer. Top with bacon bits. Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly. These are fab and so easy, too! Serve with cornbread, and a big tossed salad! Enjoy!



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Mama's Buttermilk Cornbread



1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. salt
2 tbs.'s sugar
2 1/2 tsp.'s baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, and vegetable oil. And add to the dry ingredients, and stir, until just mixed, and pour into a buttered baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes, or until top is browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

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Tomorrow, I'll be going to the Atchafalaya Basin for a little R andR and Cajun fun on the swamp. Most of you know what that means, but for those of you who don't, click here.

And for those of you who would like to attend a fabulous bloggie BBQ, please visit my new friend, Karen G.'s blog, by clicking here. She's got a real blast going on, so check it out!

Wishing you all a fabulous, fun, holiday weekend! Merci beaucoup for stopping by!