Tag Archives: Flat leaf Parsley

Stuffed Crabs

You rarely see this dish served in real crab shells, these days in restaurants. Current restaurants use pseudo-crab shells made of thick aluminum foil, and roughly crab-shaped. The only way to get stuffed crabs real way, in crab shells, is to make the at home.

The secret to this recipe is to moisten the bread used to make the dressing with heavy cream, crab or shrimp stock. Chicken stock, can be used, but the final dish will lack the seafood flavor.

These make great appetizers. You can serve them as they are, or drizzle with hollandaise sauce as a side dish, or serve three crabs as a main dish with a vegetable.

Makes About One Dozen Stuffed Crabs

Ingredients:
1 pound lump crabmeat
Two sticks unsalted butter
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 small red sweet bell pepper, finely chopped
1 small yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
1 small orange bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 rib celery, finely chopped
1 bunch green onions, finely chopped
4 Tablespoons finely minced flat-leaf Italian parsley
1 Tablespoon finely chopped garlic
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper,to taste
Crystal Hot Sauce, to taste
1/2 loaf stale French bread, cubed (about 3 cups)
1 cup homemade French bread crumbs
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup homemade crab, shrimp, or fish stock*

Special Equipment:
A dozen or so reserved crab shells, washed thoroughly, or you may substitute aluminum crab forms if fresh crab shells are not readily available.

Directions:
Pre heat the oven to 400°F.

In a large bowl add the bread cubes, cream and crab stock and set aside to soak.

Heat 1-1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) of the butter and heat in a heavy skillet. When the butter is sizzling, sauté the onions, and the celery until the onions begin to brown. Add the green onions, garlic, salt and the bell peppers and continue to cook until the vegetables are tender. Add the parsley and cook for one minute. Season to taste with salt, pepper and hot sauce.

Add the vegetable mixture and bread crumbs to the soaked the bread cubes and mix very thoroughly. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary, with salt and pepper. Take 2-1/2 to 3 cups of the bread mixture and place in a large bowl, breaking it up with your fingers. Add the crabmeat (which has been picked over for cartilage and shell bits) and use your hands to combine it with the bread mixture, very carefully leaving large lumps of crabmeats.

Stuff each crab shell or aluminum crab form with a generous amount of the stuffing. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over each mount of stuffing. Bake for about 10 minutes, and if you like turn on the broiler for the last 30-60 seconds, so that the bread crumbs will toast slightly. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

*Cook’s Note:

Swanson’s Fish Stock is an excellent substitute for crab or shrimp stock in this recipe.

Advertisements

Lobster Mac & Cheese Bites

Ingredients:
For the Macaroni:
6 strips bacon
Kosher salt
1 pound elbow macaroni
1 quart milk
8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups  Gruyere cheese, grated
2 cups extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 cup Asiago cheese, shredded
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds cooked lobster meat
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 Scallions, thinly sliced

For the Breading:
2 eggs
2½ cups Panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour

Vegetable oil, for frying

Directions:
Add pasta to large pot of boiling salted water and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.

In a medium cast iron skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning, until golden and crisp, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Chop the bacon. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don’t boil it. In a large pot, melt the butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. Still whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the cheeses, 1 tablespoon salt, the pepper, Add the cooked macaroni, bacon, lobster, scallions and  parsley and stir well, to combine.

DSC07833 DSC07828 DSC07834

 

 

Coat a 9×9-inch pan with cooking spray. Pour the macaroni mixture into the pan and freeze for several hours.Alternatively you can spray a non reactive bowl with vegetable spray and pour the macaroni mixture into the bowl and chill for several hours in the refrigerator.


Setting up the breading station

In a bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together. Set aside. In a second bowl, place the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese and salt. Mix well and set aside. In a third bowl, place the flour.

DSC07917
Breading station

 

 

 

 

 

Scoop the macaroni mixture into 2-inch balls. Place first in the flour, turning to coat, then in the egg mixture. Coat with breadcrumbs, then double coat by placing back in the egg and a final coating of breadcrumbs. Place the mac & cheese bites and chill in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours.

 

DSC07919
Roll in flour
DSC07920
Dip in egg wash
DSC07923
Roll in breadcrumbs

 

 

 
Heat the oil over medium high heat, to about 350 degrees F.

DSC07942
Mac & Cheese Bites are ready for the oil

 

 

 

 
Gently place in oil and fry until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes.

DSC07945

 

 

 
Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate. Allow to drain for 1 minute.

DSC07949

 

 

 
Repeat with remaining mac and cheese balls and fry in batches. Return the oil to 350 degrees F between batches. Allow to cool and serve.

DSC07948

 

 

Mac & Cheese Bites are now ready to eat!

DSC07954

Cook’s Notes:

I used my own homemade cured bacon made with pork belly  that was used in this recipe.

If lobster is not readily available, crabmeat and baby shrimp can be used as substitutes.

Catfish with Green Olives

DSC07896

This is a family favorite dish. If you are looking for something that is quick and easy to make during a week  night and you are mindful of being healthy on a budget, then this simple recipe is just right  for you !

Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 cup pimento-stuffed green olives, rinsed, drained, sliced
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
A squeeze of lemon juice
Four 6-ounce catfish fillets
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Lemon wedges, serving

DSC07877 - Copy
Main Ingredients

Directions:
Stir together olives, oil, zest ,  2 tablespoons of parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice  into a bowl.

DSC07881 - Copy DSC07883

Oil a 12-inch non-stick skillet with a tight fitting lid. Season catfish with salt and pepper and arrange skinless side down in the skillet, tucking thinner ends of each fillet under.

DSC07884

Mound olive mixture on top of fillets.

DSC07885

Place a sheet of parchment paper on top of mixture and cover skillet.

DSC07886DSC07887

Cook catfish over moderate heat until just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. To serve, sprinkle with remaining parsley and serve with lemon wedges.

DSC07896

Zucchini Linguine with Shrimp

My backyard garden is just bursting all over with an abundance of Zucchini, as they are reaching their peak this summer.growing-zucchini-how-to-grow-zucchini-summer-squash2-1024x768

But did you know that zucchinis are actually fruits and not a true vegetable?

However, in the culinary world, it is treated as a vegetable. Like all squash, and being a member of the gourd family, zucchini has its ancestry in the Americas. More specifically, they are native to Central America and Mexico. The varieties of squash typically called “zucchini” were further cultivated and developed in Italy, many generations after their introduction from the New World.

As a food, Zucchini are so versatile. It can be prepared using a variety of cooking techniques, including steamed, boiled, grilled, stuffed and baked, barbecued, fried, or incorporated in other recipes such as soufflés. Mature (larger sized) zucchini are well suited for cooking in breads, similar to banana bread or incorporated into a cake batter. Even Its flowers can be eaten stuffed and are a delicacy when deep fried, as tempura.Zucchini can also be eaten raw, sliced or shredded in a cold salad, as well as lightly cooked in hot salads, as in Thai or Vietnamese recipes.

Zucchini has a delicate flavor and requires little more than quick cooking with butter or olive oil, with or without fresh herbs.] The skin is left in place. Quick cooking of barely wet zucchini in oil or butter allows the fruit to partially boil and steam, with the juices concentrated in the final moments of frying when the water has gone, prior to serving, making it a perfect base for gluten free or paleo dishes.

For this dish, you can use a mandolin or a juilenne peeler to make the zucchini noodles.tumblr_llj0cdP1j51qdei8m

There is even a new product on the market as seen on those late night infomercials. It is called the Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Slicer.vegetti3 81p5zeYQufL._SL1500_

 

I prefer using the Paderno Spiralizer from Italy. Theimg32o spiralizer is available at Williams-Sonoma (www. williams-sonoma.com). Unlike the mandolin, the spiralizer will give you a continuous spiral that resembles cooked spaghetti, rather than a julienne effect that you would get with using  a mandolin or a peeler.

 

 

I gathered the ingredients I had on hand: Shrimp, garlic, fresh herbs, 1 small lemon,  1/2 small onion, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, and butter.

DSC03937

The  large  mature zucchini was taken straight from my back yard garden and washed. Using the spiralizer, the zucchini was cut.Paper towels were used to remove excess moisture. The zucchini was then placed in a glass bowl.

 

My recipe calls for the spiral zucchini to be “raw”,  seasoned with a squeeze of lemon juice, salt and freshly ground pepper, chopped parsley and torn Thai Basil leaves. which were added to the zucchini and tossed well to mix and set aside.

For the shrimp, The shellfish were deveined, with the tail left intact. Two cloves of DSC03941garlic, roughly chopped and a small onion were added to a skillet with 1 tablespoon of butter. The garlic and onions were sauteed until the onions were translucent and the garlic was fragrant.The shrimp were added to the skillet, along with salt, pepper, crushed red pepper flakes and lemon zest. The shrimp were cooked until pale pink, about 2-3 minutes each side.

The zucchini linguine was swirled onto a plate. The shrimp.garlic and onions were arranged on top of the  zucchini noodles and a dusting of grated Parmesan cheese was sprinkled on the finished plate.

10552400_714874895228331_6264874037168911754_n

From prep time to cooking time, the entire dish only took 25 minutes, with very little cooking involved. I am sure that you can add any mix of summer vegetables, like tomatoes to the dish.

Quick, light, and easy summer cooking……..as I enjoy the fruits of my labor from my back yard garden!

Wild Mushrooms and Cheese on Toast Points

Summertime eating is all about fresh and light fare. Here is an easy meal to prepared in less than 20 minutes and is perfect for those “Meatless Monday Meals”. Enjoy!

DSC03545

PREP TIME:            5 Minutes
COOKING TIME: 10 Minutes
TOTAL TIME:        20 Minutes
Serves 6

Ingredients:
2 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
1 pound button or wild mushrooms (i.e. porcini, cremini,
Shitake and  oyster) stems removed and chopped
1/4 cup  white wine
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon  ground black pepper
24 small (1/2 inch thick) slices country style bread (i.e..
ciabatta, French, Italian, focaccia), cut into triangles, toasted
1/4 pound provolone cheese, thinly sliced into strips
1/4 pound Havarti cheese, thinly sliced into strips
2 Tablespoon fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1/2 teaspoon fresh basil, chopped
1/8 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toast the bread until golden brown and remove from the oven and set aside.

2. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat.

3. Saute onions, until translucent.

4. Add chopped mushrooms and saute 3-4 minutes.

5. Add wine and increase heat to high and cook stirring until liquid has evaporated (5 minutes).

6. Add thyme, salt and pepper.

7. Add cheese to the skillet and stir until slightly melted.

8. To serve, top each slice of bread with mushroom and cheese mixture. Sprinkle with parsley and basil.

DSC03546