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Saturday, March 12, 2016

Blackened and Fried Catfish Smothered in Crawfish Etouffee

After making crawfish po boys recently, someone mentioned how tasty crawfish etouffee is. I hadn't made etouffee in ages and couldn't get it off my mind. I had to make a batch!

I couldn't decide whether to make fried catfish or I went with both!

First I made some blackening seasoning. This is basically Paul Prudhomme's recipe but I altered the amounts to suite my taste. Less salt and less cayenne.

His recipe..
1 TBS sweet paprika (I used smoked)
2 1/2 tsp salt ( I used about half)
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper (I used 3/4 tsp)
3/4 tsp white pepper
3/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp thyme
and 1/2 tsp oregano

Chopped celery, onions, scallions, green peppers and garlic for the etouffee..

made a blonde roux for this. Stirred the flour in oil until light brown in color...then set the pot aside for later.

sauteed my veggies in butter, til they were tender...

added the tender veggies and butter to the roux pot...also added a couple pinches of the blackened seasoning just for the heck of it.

Made a shrimp stock...

added the hot stock one cup at a time to the roux- veggie pot, stirring constantly until the etouffee reached the thickness I was looking for..

next came the shrimp..

crawfish tails...

some minced scallions and parsley...
I tasted for salt, pepper and cayenne. The etouffee was rich and buttery good!

For the catfish, I seasoned half with my usual fish fry, cornmeal, a bit of flour, cayenne, salt and lemon pepper...

The other half were brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with the blackened seasoning..

These were some catfish from one of  last summer's camping trips...

Since there were so few fish, I decided to skillet fry them. I used my fancy home made cooker.

I had help...

After frying the filets, I cleaned the pan and added butter and a bit of oil for the blackened catfish..

I was happy I chose to cook these outside. The strong blackened seasoning almost takes my breath away!

I didn't plan on eating two filets but couldn't decide which kind I wanted. I went with one of each. :)

The blackened and fried catfish smothered with crawfish etouffee...

I couldn't wait to dig in!!

First bite was the blackened catfish...

Then the fried catfish...

I loved both. I had forgotten how tasty etouffee is and how quick it is to make. I'm definitely making this more often,
The blackening seasoning was tasty too, Not to hot but it had a bite to it. I plan on using the seasoning on blackened shrimp and chicken too.

When dishing up the plate, there were two large shrimp on top of the heap. I couldn't resist and popped them into my mouth before taking the pics. I was starving and they looked toooooo good.

I didn't make it through both fish but tried my best. :)

The weather has been beautiful here. It actually rained a little bit this morning, The air smells so fresh now.
Hope everyone is having a nice weekend!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Cold Smoking in the Smokehouse (replenishing my stash)

When I run out of smoked salt, I know I need to fire up the smokehouse. The olives and nuts usually get used first, then the cheese and peppers. The salt and spices last the longest, so when I'm out... I know I need to get off my hind end and make more. :)

This batch of smoked goodies included..
Sea Salt
Coarse Kosher Salt
A Homemade Black Pepper, Coarse Salt, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder Blend
Anasazi Beans
A Wild Rice Blend
Turbinado Sugar
Black Olives
Mini Chocolate Chips
Two Kinds of Duck Eggs
Jalapeno Peppers
Mozzarella Cheese
Pepperjack Cheese
Colby Jack Cheese
Mexican Crumbling Cheese
I think that was it.

I placed the salts and pepper blend on the top rack...

Also the duck eggs and butter. Some of the eggs were shelled and some weren't.

The black olives and Mexican crumbling cheese...

I make a slit in each pepper for smoke penetration.

The mozzarella, pepper jack and colby jack cheese...

Wild rice blend in front and anasazi beans in back...

turbinado sugar....


chocolate chips...

I used a blend of wood smoke, started with milder woods, maple and alder. Pulled some of the items from the smoke and then switched up to a stronger smoke (hickory) for the rice, beans and salts...
The smokehouse stayed at 65F and below the whole time.

The butter, eggs and olives got a 2 hr smoke, pulled the cheese, choco chips and nuts out after 3 hrs. The beans, rice, sugar and salts went for 5 hrs.

Smoked cheese,  butter, nuts, chocolate chips, olives, jalapenos, anasazi beans and rice blend..

The smoked butter and smoked duck eggs...

smoked rice and anasazi beans...

smoked choco chips and olives...

The rice blend, anasazi beans, turbinado sugar, coarse kosher salt, salt/pepper blend and the smoked sea salt..

I'm good for awhile! :)

First thing I always make is smoked olive tapenade. I love this stuff!
Minced olives a bit of garlic, olive oil, scallions, capers, salt and pepper to taste... I think that's it.

Hot cocoa with a few smoked chips in the cup and sprinkled on top... it was soooo tasty. :)

Also made vietnamese Pho with smoked duck egg and added some slices of a smoked jalapeno...
Loved it! I am hooked on Pho anyway but the addition of the smoked duck egg sent it over the top for me.

Almost forgot... I've used the butter and smoked salt, pepper, garlic, onion seasoning on a KC strip..

The steak was cooked in my sous vide, so the addition of smoked butter and smoked salt blend was a welcome addition.

I probably should have made this into at least 2 blog posts, there are so many pics.
Right now my house smells like smoke. :/ ... but it was worth it to get my supplies replenished.

Hope everyone is having a great week!