Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday Supper Club

A new Supper Club has been born in San Francisco. Yes, yours truly has started the “Sunday Supper Club” and this month’s theme was “Jambalaya & Jazz.” I wanted to take on a challenge with some new recipes that I hadn’t tried and there was no better way than to spice things up with a lil’ Southern twist. With the help of Andie, my best friend/co-host/culinary apprentice we made a meal to remember. Starting things off were drinks (of course) and tonight’s beverage of choice was the classic “Mint Julep.” You will need:

2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups water (branch water is ideal)
Fresh Mint
Crushed Ice
Kentucky Bourbon (2 ounces per serving)

Make a simple mint syrup* by boiling sugar and water together for 5 minutes; cool. Place in a covered container with 6 or 8 bruised mint sprigs. Refrigerate overnight. Make a julep by filling a julep cup* or glass with crushed ice, then adding 1 tablespoon of mint syrup and 2 ounces of bourbon. Stir rapidly with a spoon to frost outside of cup or glass. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig. Sweet Iced Tea was also offered.

Next we moved on to the main event of Jambalaya, Etoufee, rice and corn bread. Using a Food Networks’ Favorite I used Emeril’s recipe for Cajun Jambalaya. Everyone was impressed with the unique flavors, ingredients and Dave W., especially, could not help but come back for more and more and more (well you get the point). Accompanying the Jambalaya was Etouffee.

Cajun Jambalaya
Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

12 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped
4 ounces chicken, diced
1 tablespoon Creole seasoning, recipe follows
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
3 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon hot sauce
3/4 cup rice
3 cups chicken stock
5 ounces Andouille sausage, sliced
Salt and pepper
In a bowl combine shrimp, chicken and Creole seasoning, and work in seasoning well. In a large saucepan heat oil over high heat with onion, pepper and celery, 3 minutes. Add garlic, tomatoes, bay leaves, Worcestershire and hot sauces. Stir in rice and slowly add broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook until rice absorbs liquid and becomes tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. When rice is just tender add shrimp and chicken mixture and sausage. Cook until meat is done, about 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning.
Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

These dishes are great either alone or with some plain white rice to go along side. The corn bread was jazzed up with some cilantro and garlic to garnish (Southern style), and baked in cupcake liners for easy serving.

Dessert followed with Beignet’s which were DELICIOUS!! Andie brought back some Beignet mix from her visits to New Orleans and these heavenly French-style donuts were the perfect end to a fabulous meal.