Thursday, September 11, 2008

Andouille Cream Farfalle

For years I've tried to replicate a dish that I enjoyed at Applebees and that they no longer make. Just recently I finally stumbled upon the right combination to keep the sauce light and creamy, cream, huh, who woulda thought, obviously not me for years, but finally I have it and now I'd like to share. The original dish was made with blackened chicken, we prefer it with Andouille sausage but like it with grilled chicken breast too.

Andouille Cream Farfalle - 4 servings

1 ½ Smoked Andouille sausages, remove casing and slice into 1/4" rounds
2 c dried whole wheat Farfalle, cooked al dente, drained
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 small onion, fine dice
½ bell pepper, fine dice (we like yellow best)
1 tomato, peeled, seeded, fine dice
4 T unsalted butter
1/4 c heavy cream
Mark’s Essence
kosher salt

Saute onion, bell pepper, tomato and garlic in butter. When the veggies are soft and starting to caramelize a bit add the sausage and continue to stir and cook until the sausage is hot through. Add drained Farfalle and cream, stir until thoroughly mixed and continue cooking until hot. If needed add a little more cream or butter to keep the sauce loose. Add salt and essence to taste. When we can't get the rich cheesy smelling butter that comes from a local dairy here we use regular unsalted butter and add 1/2 c of grated Gruyere, either way it's one of our favorites.

Mark’s Essence - we call it this because it's similar to Emeril's but with my dh's own twist.

2 ½ T smoked paprika
2 T salt
2 T garlic powder
1 T black pepper
1 T onion powder
1 T cayenne pepper
3 T crushed red pepper
1 T oregano
1 T thyme

Combine in a spice grinder and grind until desired consistency, store in a shaker.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Mushroom Fan?

I'm not really. They are okay here and there, but I really don't like the texture of them much and so when everyone else is all agog about running out into the woods getting morels or what have you, I'm fine staying home and missing out on the craze. I finally did find a way that I LOVE them, chopped beyond recognition and put in soup, go figure. Actually in our pursuit to get rid of the processed foods and chemicals and such in our diet I've been working on finding a good substitute for the ubiquitous cream of mushroom soup that shows up in so many recipes. Well the search is over, and while it's a bit of work it's so worth it. Today we tried it in Sour Cream Enchiladas but I can't wait to try it in several other applications. So here, I'll share...

Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup Recipe - recipe makes 2 cans worth

1 pound regular white mushrooms, cleaned, quartered or sliced
1 T lemon juice
1 T unsalted butter
2 T minced shallots
1 T chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 t fresh ground pepper
2 c half and half
3 chicken bullion cubes
2 T cornstarch
1/4 c dried parsley

Chop mushrooms in a food processor with lemon juice.

Melt butter in a (4-5 quart) sauce pan and lightly saute shallots on medium heat. Add mushrooms, thyme and bay leaf, saute over moderate heat for 10-15 minutes, or until the liquid the is released from the mushrooms disappears.

Add bullion cubes to cream, heat just enough to dissolve bullion. Add to mushrooms along with pepper and parsley and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add cornstarch, dissolved in a little water and stir until thickened and boiling.

To use in recipe: This makes 2 cans worth, use as is.

To serve as soup: Add 1 ½ cups water prior to adding cornstarch.

And here's the recipe for those Sour Cream Enchiladas, I'm guessing they make at least 8 adult servings and with a side dish they could easily go to 10 or even 12.

Sour Cream Enchiladas

1 pound ground beef or deer
1 can Rotel
chili powder
garlic powder

1 recipe Cream of Mushroom Soup
2 c sour cream
3/4 pound sharp cheddar cheese, grated
14 oz canned green chilies

8-10 large flour tortillas
1 large onion chopped
1/4 pound sharp cheddar cheese, grated

Meat: Brown ground beef or deer. Add pureed Rotel, and salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic powder and cumin to taste.

Sauce: Add all ingredients and heat over medium until cheese is melted and the sauce is very warm but not too hot to handle.

Assembly: Grease a 9x13-inch pan. Coat the bottom of the pan with a generous layer of sauce. Place a ladle of sauce, a portion of the meat and some chopped onions in the center of a tortilla, roll and put seam side down in the pan. Continue until all meat and tortillas are used, pack them into the pan pretty tightly. Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas, making sure to get it down in between and in the ends of the enchiladas. Sprinkle with cheese.

Bake in a 350 degree oven until hot and bubbly and slightly browned on the top. Fresh this takes about 35 minutes or so, refrigerated allow 45 minutes to an hour.