The selections for this week represent a cross-section of culinary culture: a revered chef/restauranteur, a nationally-respected business professional and a bakery owner. I first visited LeRuth’s of New Orleans in the 80’s. More than fine dining, it was transformational evening, a glimpse of epicurean paradise where elegance, superb food, fine wines and unparalleled service were the norm. Pat Sabatelle is a friend and neighbor who excels in all things good and delicious. Briana Carson’s pie salutes the glory of blueberries with her amazing dessert. May these recipes result in taking the edge off the daily struggles during these uncertain times.
Warren LeRuth’s Oyster & Artichoke Soup
A Heritage Recipe
1 stick – 1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 large yellow onion, (to yield 1-1/2 cups finely chopped)
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 ribs celery, (to yield 1 cup finely chopped)
4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 qty 12-oz. packages frozen artichoke hearts, quartered – defrosted
¼ cup all purpose flour
1 carton good quality or home made chicken stock (4 cups)
½ tsp Cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp fresh thyme or dried thyme in a pinch
2 pints oysters, drained with reserve liquor
1/3 cup sherry
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
Onions: Peel, discard ends and finely chop.
Green onions: Cut the woody bottom and discard. Chop into circles and set aside.
Celery: Cut and discard 2” bottom and brown top and leaves if any. Cut into long thin strips and finely chop.
Garlic: Crush and chop. Set aside.
In a heavy bottom pot, melt the butter over medium heat.
Add both chopped onions, celery, garlic and ½ tsp salt. Sauté’ for 8-10 minutes until soft.
Sprinkle the mixture with the flour and stir to coat the vegetables well. Continue to sauté for a few minutes but do not let the flour brown. Add the artichokes and sauté for 5 minutes or so.
Add the stock, cayenne, salt, Worcestershire sauce, and thyme. Stir and taste and adjust seasonings.
Over high heat bring the soup to a heavy simmer. Cover with a lid allowing steam to escape through a small gap and simmer for 45 minutes over low heat.
Stir off and on to prevent the soup from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Add the oysters, oyster liquor, and sherry and simmer for 7-10 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream and milk. Warm through but do not allow the soup to boil.
Cool and refrigerate for at least 8 hours if not the next day allowing all the flavors to meld.
Before serving, heat the soup slowly over low heat & serve warm.
Pat’s Magnum Opus
Prawn, Sugar Pea and Cauliflower Salad
Pat D’Alba Sabatelle, Stone Mountain, Georgia
I got this recipe from Chef Michel Smith but have altered it somewhat to shorten the preparation. My husband tells me this is the most wonderful salad in the world.
This Recipe serves 4-6
½ English Cucumber
1 Lemon (juiced)
1 Lb Prawns (shelled)
½ Small Cauliflower
4 Ozs Stringed Sugar Peas
1 Tbs Chopped Parsley
1 ½ Pints Chicken Stock
1 Bunch of Watercress
Take alternative strips of rind off the cucumber with a canelle knife. Cut it in half lengthways, scoop out the seeds and cut into ¼ in pieces. Peel & pit the avocados, cut them into chunks and toss them in lemon juice to prevent them from discoloring. Peel & segment the oranges, discarding the membrane between the orange slices. Pour chicken stock into a sauce pot, add ½ the lemon juice & bring to a boil. Break the cauliflower into small florets: cook for 1 ½ minutes in the chicken stock. Remove with a slotted spoon. & leave to cool. Add the sugar peas to the stock for 2 minutes. Remove & cool under water to keep the green color. Drain & cool.
Put all the ingredients in the refrigerator to chill. Keep in separate containers. Just before serving, gently toss everything together in a large bowl, including the dressing. Serve on individual dishes on top of a small bouquet of watercress. Top with chopped parsley.
Mix together in a screw-top jar and shake.
1 Tsp Dry Mustard
1 Garlic Clove (crushed)
1-2 Tsp Grated Orange Zest
2 Tbs Wine Vinegar
1 Tsp Sugar
¼ Freshly Milled White or Black Pepper
¼ Tsp Kosher Salt
Blueberry Lemon Crumble Pie
Briana Carson, Crave Pie Studio, Duluth, Georgia
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 Tablespoon cornmeal
1 Tablespoon all purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon finely grated zest
Juice of 1 large lemon (approximately 3 Tbsp)
½ cup whole milk
3 large eggs
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup butter, melted
½ teaspoon vanilla
¾ to 1 cup of fresh blueberries (depending on size of berries)
½ cup sugar
¼ cup + 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt
3 Tbsp butter
One 9-inch par-baked pie shell
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Add lemon juice to milk and set aside
- Combine the sugar, cornmeal, flour, and salt in a medium size bowl. Beat the eggs in, one by one, then add the melted butter in a slow stream, beating all the while. Add in acidulated milk, then vanilla and lemon zest until all ingredients are combined.
- Add blueberries to the bottom of prepared pie shell.
- Pour the filling into the prepared pie shell, slide the pie onto a baking sheet and bake on the middle oven shelf for about 30 minutes or until puffed and not sloshing in the middle. During this time, prepare the crumb topping. (see instructions below) Remove from oven and add crumb topping. Return to oven and bake for another 10 minutes or until crumble is delicately browned.
- Transfer the pie to a wire rack and cool completely. May be served chilled or at room temperature.
Blend together flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl. Cut chilled butter into small dice, and mix into dry ingredients with a pastry blender or fork. Combine ingredients until texture is crumbly.
Par Baked Pie Shell:
Line a chilled or frozen pie shell with parchment paper. Fill with ceramic pie weights, dried beans or dry rice. Place in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and remove parchment paper and weights. Bottom of pie shell will look pale golden, but not thoroughly cooked. Cool shell to room temperature before filling.