Thursday, July 09, 2009

One Bowl Egg Salad

Often I am in a rush and need to make a quick lunch. Making egg salad is fast using this one bowl microwave method. Crack two or 3 eggs into a salad bowl, microwave then about 20 seconds and check to see doneness, sometimes it takes 3 settings at 20 seconds to get to the desired doneness.
I am told you can pierce the yellow with a tooth pick or place the bowl in a saucer of water to help them cook but I find going slow with 3 rounds of 15 seconds or so keeps the eggs from exploding.
After your bowl of eggs are cooked to your doneness you add one teaspoon mayo, one sour cream, and your favorite herbs and spices. Chop it all up in the bowl.Salt and pepper to taste. To jazz it up you can add chopped spinach or Herbs De Provence, chopped onions, salsa, whatever you like to spice up the egg and mayo mixture. I find adding some Feta or Blue Cheese is nice too. By the time you mix it all up your toast is done and all you need is to spread the egg salad onto the bread and eat.

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Nutria or Coypu?

Eat Me Save The Marsh

I am always asked about the Nutria having played many days in the Louisiana Swamps and cooked a few at a little swamp cafe. Back then as a lark I did a t shirt design with a cartoon face of a mean looking Nutria that said "Save The Nutria" but changed it to "'Eat Me, Save The Marsh." Seems people are afraid of the little critters that I found on my forrays into the swamp to be timid and cute. As with most swamp animals cleaning them is a mess but not as bad as the 50 turtles I caught once. Turtle meat is sought by local Chefs, not Nutria. Yet Nutria can be used in several Creole receipes. I have suggested changing the name on Menus to Coypu and trying the meat in an Asian stir fry but all my suggestions seem to fall away. Below is a home based receipe used in a crock pot or on the stove to then served on rice or noodles. When we did this at the cafe it was with frozen meat caught and dressed right there. At times trappers would give away the carcuss wanting only the hide. Try it if you can find the frozen meat in a store.

Coypu Crock Pot

About 2 cups Coypu dressed meat sometimes found in freezer at local stores.

The Creole Trinity of chopped onion, bell pepper, and celery, half a cup in equal portions.

Can of cut up tomatoes, or used the pre flavored diced ones, you pick the flavor.

Cut up carrots, about half a cup.

Cup of your favorite wine

Can of Chicken or beef broth

Clove of garlic, chopped

Pinch of salt and pepper.

Wilt the Creole Trinity in pan then add and brown meat. Place the items in a crock pot and cook almost 2 hours to the meat is tender. Serve warm over rice or noodles with your favorite hot sauce and crusty French bread and butter. At the Cafe seems the patrons preferred egg noodles but I did not know why. To vary I have added additional local grown vegetables like Broccoli Rab or Cabbage.

View those old Nutria and Swampt shirt designs at this link:

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Quick and Easy Shrimp Jambalaya

Last summer I visited friends and family in New York State. As usual they asked I cook up something from New Orleans for them but it wasn't easy finding the right ingredients locally in the area so I improvised. The local store did have rice, sausage, frozen shrimp but rather than making up a bunch of spices and tomatoes I substituted the canned stewed tomatoes with mild chillies. They did not have the brand, Ro-Tel but they had a national brand similar. I tasted as I went along and added a touch of the curry powder to make the taste a little more exotic and put out Tabasco brand hot sauce so they could spice it up to their taste. Below is about what I did but change it to tailor your taste. These items should be found in any store in the USA.

1 lb bag frozen peeled shrimp
1 lb bag link Polish Kielbasa Sausage
1/2 lb Long Grain White Rice
2 cans stewed or diced tomatoes with mild green chillies
1/4 cup cut up celery
1/4 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped bell pepper
Salt and Pepper to taste
Dash Curry Powder

Defrost the frozen shrimp a while. As usual sautee the onion, celery and bell pepper in butter to limp. Drain out the liquid from the canned tomatoes to measure to add back for the rice. Chop the sausage in thin round slices, the thinner the more it goes around. Prepare the rice as directed on the package usually 2 parts liquid to one part rice. Use the tomato liquid and add in any extra water to meet the rice directions. In a large kettle add the rice, liquid, trinity, (chopped o-b-c) and thinly sliced sausage. Dash in the Curry Powder, salt, and pepper to taste. Let cook per rice directions. About 8 minutes before the rice is done fold in the defrosted shrimp. Cook to done place in a fancy decorated platter and serve with bread and wine.
If you had time make a good easy bread pudding for desert.

I have this great Jambalaya t-shirt for sale here:

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Secret Hickory Smoke Sauce

In New Orleans people like a type of Hickory Smoke Sauce on their Hamburgers. As a kid I discovered this sauce from an Uncle who claimed to have invented it and kept it secret so people would always ask him to make them some. As he got old and did not want to take the secret with him. He wasn't sure where he was going or if they would need a Secret Hickory Smoke Sauce there. He told me to keep it a secret too, so do not tell anyone what is below, Uncle Bud said he would haunt ya.

The sauce must be cooked to develop the flavors, depending on how much you need just remember the basic is half tomato ketchup and half tomato sauce in a sauce pan. Simmer on med heat add in the secret stuff, Liquid Hickory Smoke and Chili Powder to taste, not too much enough so the taste of the Hickory comes through and the Chili calms down the tomatoes. After it cooks a while let it on simmer and keep it warm.

Over the years I have used it in many other dishes, Frito Pie, which is just corn chips and can chili, no beans, topped off with cheese and the secret sauce. I also put it on my re fried beans as a topping with cheese. It has many uses. And you can get the apron or any of my New Orleans art or t-shirts below by clicking on the image to go to my studio store on the web.

Jambalaya Crawfish Pie apron
Jambalaya Crawfish Pie by figstreetstudio
Shop for an apron on Zazzle

Got Gumbo shirt
Got Gumbo by figstreetstudio
Shop Zazzle for another tee zazzle

Friday, March 16, 2007

Quick Crawfish Seafood Salad

Quick Crawfish Seafood Salad Almost Home Made

Making a nice Louisiana style Crawfish Salad can be easy using store bought prepackaged products. Take the Louisiana packaged Crawfish tails, like  Louisiana Crawfish Co and add into a store bought seafood salad like 'Reser's'. I add in a little lemon juice and Louisiana Hot Sauce to pick it up. Then you can place it on a bed of lettuce with slices of tomato and lemon wedges.
Great with chips or crackers. To make a 'Crawfish Slaw' I add the crawfish- seafood salad mix into the pre-sliced cabbage package and add in a little mayonnaise, creole mustard, then spiced with lemon and Louisiana Hot Sauce. With the prepackaged Louisiana Crawfish Tails get creative and add them into many dishes you already make. And for some funny crawfish eating t-shirts and buttons see-

Fleur De Craw, Fleur De Lis Crawfish Shirts
Fleur De Craw, Fleur De Lis Crawfish Shirts by figstreetstudio
Create unique shirts from Fig Street Studio add names to shirt.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Easy Stuffed Bell Peppers

Several Louisiana companies package a Cajun Dirty Rice mix that is good to stuff bell peppers.
Start with picking out nicely firm bell peppers. Cut the tops off and remove seeds and pith. You can boil or microwave the peppers until cooked but retain shape, el dente like.

Prepare the Dirty Rice mix according to the package directions with ground meat or whatever meat you like. Use the prepared Dirty Rice mix to put inside the slightly cooked peppers.
Here is where people differ some add an Italian red gravy, use the pre packaged can spaghetti sauce. And some like them plain with just the moisture from cooking. Place the stuffed peppers in a cooking dish with whatever gravy you like on top sitting in a little water and cook until done. You can do this in an oven or microwave just cover with foil or plastic wrap depending on where you cook them. I often wondered if you took Boudin Sausage out of the casing and stuffed peppers with it how it would work?

Peppers and Okra on T-Shirts click image.

Friday, September 08, 2006


The artichoke is a thistle and a native of the Mediterranean. What we eat is actually the plant's flower bud. If they flower they look a lot like the thistle growing on the side of roadways.
Available twelve months a year in season in the spring and fall. Most artichokes grown worldwide are cultivated in Italy and Spain. California provides all of the United States crop.

Stuffing Artichokes

One of the best ways to eat an artichoke is by stuffing it. First they need to be cleaned and prepared. Use a little lemon juice in water to keep them green. Cut the sticky leaves at the tips and cut the bottom off as shown in the pictures. Pre-boil to almost done.Then clean a hole in the center to hold the stuffing. I use the pre-made stuffings that come in a box adding in a little Italian Bread crumbs and cheese or whatevr additions you like. Several other recipies are below.


There are many recipies to stuff artichokes. An easy way is to use those stove top dressing mixes available in the store cook as stated on the package and place in hole in artichoke, then steam the artichoke in a large pot with a little amount of water until done. Test by pulling a leaf off and seeing if it comes off easy. Add a little Italian dressing drizzled all over the choke and eat it with your favorite wine and cheese. Here is one on the web from scratch - You can also experiment with the Dirty Rice mixes and the frozen stuffings to save time in preparing the stuffings.


Beurre Blanc

8 oz Dry white wine

1-1/2 oz White wine vinegar

1 oz Shallots, chopped

1 lb Cold butter, cut into small pieces


Combine the wine, vinegar, and shallots in a saucepan. Let it reduce to very thick. Set the pan over low heat. Add the butter a few pieces at a time, whipping constantly. When each addition is nearly melted, add a few more pieces. Continue until all the butter is added. Add Dill and Saffron or whatever spices you like. Dip artichoke leaves in this sauce then pass through your teeth.