Spicy Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

I’ve never made any Cajun or Creole food, so I figured it was about time to experiment.  This is a Cajun-style recipe because the base of the gumbo is a dark roux and the aromatics are the trinity of onion, green pepper and celery.  This recipe is based off the “Spicy Seafood Gumbo” from Emily Ansara Baines’s “The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook,” although I added sausage, forgot to buy celery and the store didn’t have any okra.  Okra is an awesome vegetable, you should add some if you have it.  But anyways, this is a pretty easy and turned out pretty delicious. DSC_0298 Spicy Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 sticks celery, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup clam juice
  • 2 tbsp seafood seasoning, I used some crab/shrimp/crawfish boil seasoning I found at the grocery store
  • 2 tbsp Louisiana-style hot sauce
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (less if you want less spice)
  • 2 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 sausage of your choosing, I used boudin sausage made of pork and pork liver
  • 1 box of rice, I used Zatarain’s brand Dirty Rice Mix

Start by boiling water for the rice and prepare per the box directions. Heat the butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat.  Take a wild guess at what I used… DSC_0284 THE DUTCH OVEN DUH. When the butter is melted, add the flour and stir with a fork or whisk.  I have this super nifty flat whisk and it rules at making a roux.  It’ll initially foam up a bunch like this: DSC_0285 So the tricky part about making a roux is that it’s so easy to burn it’s insane.  When you’re doing this part, make SURE you’re constantly stirring and watching it.  I stopped for 10 seconds to take a picture and ruined my first attempt; had the whole house smelling like burnt popcorn and you DON’T want that in your food, it’ll taste naaaasty. Just keep stirring.  Slowly it’ll start to get golden. DSC_0288 And it’ll get a little brownish… DSC_0290 Keep stirring constantly, you want your roux to be as dark as possible without having any burnt bits. DSC_0291 Keep going until it’s EVEN MORE brown.  DO NOT STOP STIRRING seriously it’s not fun to stir that long and burn it. DSC_0293 Continue reading

Summer Eats from Coast to Coast

Here’s some of the amazeballz things I’ve been eating/drinking this summer:

1.  This photo is reaaaally old but brunch here was amazing and The General Muir (http://www.thegeneralmuir.com/) is my oldest friend and future chef business partner’s favorite place to eat in Atlanta.  Highly recommended.

The Avenue A open faced bagel:  nova, schmear, avocado, grapefruit, cucumber, onion.

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2.  While in sunny SAN DIEGO for the 4th of July, I had lunch with my lovely mother at Prep Kitchen (http://www.prepkitchen.com/) in Little Italy:  to start, probably one of my favorite cocktails to date, London’s Burning.  Gin, jalapeño, avocado and lime.

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Followed up by a cold corn puree soup:

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And mussels with garlic, white wine, cream and fries:

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Orecchiette with Sausage, Corn, Jalapeño and Asparagus

I get this wonderful magazine called Martha Stewart Living every month (a. thanks, Jamie and b. sorry, Mom) and besides oogling at the ridiculous and supposedly “do-it-yourself” crafts that only housewives have the time for, I like to look at the food.  This is loosely based off of a recipe from Martha from the June 2013 issue.  I added mushrooms and asparagus because why not?

Orecchiette with Sausage, Corn, Jalapeño and Asparagus

  • salt and pepper
  • orecchiette
  • hot Italian sausage
  • butter
  • jalapeño
  • mushrooms (I used oyster mushrooms)
  • asparagus
  • FRESH corn kernals (aka cut them off the cob)
  • sour cream
  • cilantro

Start by browning your sausage in a dutch oven.  You want the uncooked stuff and remove it from the casing.  Unfortunately the market I went to didn’t have any uncooked Italian sausages so I got stuck with the already cooked and let’s be real:  I’m too lazy to go to a SECOND grocery store so it is what it is.  I’m just heating it up here.

Sausage!

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What’s been going ON

It has once again been awhile, but this post is going to catch y’all up with what’s been going on.

Two weekends ago I hopped a plane back to the bay area for Bay2Breakers.  If you don’t know, the LA Times describes Bay2Breakers (or B2B) as the following:

Bay to Breakers is an annual footrace through San Francisco that typically involves a lot of costumes, drinking and partying and little actual racing.

It is always the my single most favorite day of the year (unless the Patriots happen to win the Super Bowl) because it’s just a big weird and sloppy parade where I somehow miraculously run into nearly all of my friends.

I started off the weekend with a burrito from my FAVORITE place in San Jose, La Victoria’s, or as it’s more affectionately known:  “La Vic’s”.  I am obsessive about burritos (and they all SUCK in Austin) and the secret to the amazingness is this:

The holy grail.

The holy grail.

Aside:  let’s us all pump our fists in happiness that I finally figured out how to make my pictures BIGGER!!  Woo!

Saturday morning brought wine tasting with my old roommates and friends via a limo chocked with a shit ton of champagne.

We were completely sober in this photo.

We were completely sober in this photo.

Needless to say, we had an excellent time snacking on cheese and charcuterie and drinking wine in between being chauffeured in a limo binge-fest around beautiful Napa and Sonoma.

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