Thursday, February 27, 2014

Mardi Gras March

March 2014

Sausage making is really old. Humans have been doing it for eons. Most of the credit goes to the Germans for bringing it to the United States, (and they were undoubtedly the first to commercialize it here) but you can’t tell me they haven’t been making sausage in some form or another down on the bayou for a million freaking years. And they make sausage out everything.

But it’s not just sausage that makes Louisiana such an enigma. It’s jambalaya and etoufee. Rustic Cajun and uptown Creole dishes. Crawfish and red beans. And the essential musical fragrance that wafts through the streets. Man, it’s eerie too…you can really feel the voodoo. Forget Vegas…the really funky ass stuff happens in NOLA.

So this month, in celebration of Mardi Gras, we pay our due respect to the cuisine of Acadiana and the entire ethos of it’s epicenter, New Orleans with the release of our Cajun Seafood Sausage and other accoutrements listed below. And don’t forget to come by JJ’s Red Hots in Dilworth on Fat Tuesday (March 4th) for live music at lunch and a free cup of GUMBO!

Laissez Le Bon Temps Rouler!

Cajun Seafood Sausage with Pork, Shrimp, Green Onions and Roasted Peppers//  This recipe is adapted from John Folse’s version. We changed some things around and decided to poach it in stock before we grill it, but it’s pretty close. And it is because John Folse is that good. We are proud to call him our friend. ( We are serving this on our toasted Martin’s Potato Roll with our house-made remoulade and green onions.

Red Beans with House Smoked Tasso Ham//  This is a traditional ‘washing day’ recipe flavored with our own house smoked tasso ham.

House Pickled Okra//  Sharp and crunchy with a wonderful texture. Okra is made for pickling.

Dog of the Week (March 3-9) // Who Dat’ Dawg! // Sahlen’s Hot Dog/Martin’s Potato Roll/Red Beans/Green Onions/Remoulade

RECIPE | Red Beans
This is a traditional staple of New Orleans cuisine made a thousand different ways all across Louisiana. Smoky and satisfying, (and inexpensive) red beans were traditionally made on Mondays – or ‘washing day’ – when housewives would put up the beans, do the wash and catch up on all the gossip. When the wash was done, so were the beans, and there was always plenty to share. Ladle the beans over steamed rice, top with green onions and serve with a hunk of crusty bread and a chunk of grilled andouille sausage. And don’t forget the hot sauce, mon cher.

3            Lbs. Red Beans, Soaked in water overnight, drained and rinsed well.
2            Cups onions, chopped
1            Cup Bell Pepper, chopped
1            Cup Celery, Chopped
3            T Garlic, minced
2            Hamhocks or other smoked ham.
1            Cup chopped andouille sausage
3            T Bacon fat or olive oil
3            T Kosher Salt
1            T Ground black pepper
1            Tsp Smoked Habanero Confit (optional, may substitute hot sauce)

Chopped Parsley
Green onions

1. In a large stockpot over medium heat, Render the hamhocks and andouille in bacon fat or olive oil for 3 min.
2. Turn up the heat to medium-high, add ‘Holy Trinity’ and garlic, and sweat for 3 min, stirring often.
3. Add beans and cover with water by 3”.
4. Bring to boil, reduce and simmer about 2.5 hrs. Beans should be soft but not mushy. Add salt/pepper to taste.
5. Mash beans on side of pot until slightly thick and creamy, stir and simmer until thickened, adjusting the texture to your taste
  Serve over steamed rice and top with green onions, a shot or two of Tabasco, grilled andouille sausage and chunk of crusty bread.

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