Creamy Custard Ice Cream Base

Homemade ice cream without the pain of manually churning!   You may use this base for almost all of your favorite ice creams. I use it for chocolate, banana, butter pecan, peach, rocky road, strawberry… I use it for almost … Continue reading

Christmas Eve Lasagna

Christmas Eve Red Lasagna

Every Christmas Eve I prepare lasagna, chicken French, and Cajun eggnog. Sure, I have a display of Christmas cutout cookies and red velvet cupcakes, but it isn’t Christmas Eve until the lasagna is out of the oven.This recipe yields a 2-3 … Continue reading

Potato Latkes (Pancakes)

Potato latkes with fresh sour cream and homemade apple sauce brings back wonderful childhood memories!   Ingredients  2 lbs butter/yellow potatoes, peeled 3/4 cup chopped scallions 3 large eggs, beaten 2 tablespoons all purpose flour OR matzo meal 1.5 teaspoons … Continue reading

Low Country Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and Grits. One of the quintessential low country dishes great for breakfast, brunch, or in my home, the perfect after work snack. Low country cooking is unpretentious, yet flavorful. It is representative of true American flavors! Low country refers … Continue reading

Creamy Baked Macaroni

BLOGGER’S NOTE: PHOTOS ARE NOT INCLUDED AT THIS TIME. I WANTED TO ENSURE THAT THE RECIPE WAS POSTED PRIOR TO THANKSGIVING. I WILL UPDATE POST WITH PHOTOS AFTER THANKSGIVING, IN TIME FOR CHRISTMAS.

This recipe juxtaposes my two favorite versions of macaroni and cheese: classic U.S. southern style baked macaroni and West Indian macaroni pie. There are several imitations of macaroni pie on the internet and do not do the real thing justice. Both macaroni pie and southern style baked macaroni are staple on holidays and Sunday dinners often served along side a green vegetable such as callaloo, steamed cabbage, or collard greens and of course, stewed or fried fish and fried chicken! I like my baked macaroni a little spicy so I add finely chopped habanero pepper, but feel free to leave it out. What separates my baked macaroni from that bland stuff is all of the flavor, the creaminess, and richness. Note, I did not include the calorie/nutrition information here. Why not? Because it’s calorie free of course!

Seasoned Bechamel Sauce

3 cups evaporated milk (carnation or Pet; you may also use whole, 2% or 1% milk)

1 stick (8 tablespoons) salted butter

1/2 cup all purpose flour

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

2 teaspoons ground/dry mustard

1 teaspoon white pepper

***optional***- 1 habanero pepper seeded and finely chopped OR 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce/hot sauce

Remaining Ingredients 

1 lb “elbow” macaroni or this for traditional style 

1-2 teaspoons kosher salt for boiling pasta

1 teaspoon vegetable or olive oil for boiling pasta

2 eggs whisked (remove the white string with a knife FYI this makes your eggs taste and smell “fresh” or eggy)

2 cups (1 lb) shredded sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese

1 cup (1/4 lb)   shredded pecorino romano

1 cup (1/4 lb) crumbly cubes (coarse chop using food processor) mozzarella or muenster cheese

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large heavy bottomed pot (such as the IMUSA castiron pot) melt the stick of butter over medium heat. Sprinkle in flour by the heaping tablespoon full whisking thoroughly and constantly before adding more flour. Be careful not to burn.

Once all flour is incorporated add milk slowly while constantly whisking.

Reduce temperature to medium-low and add garlic powder, onion powder, dry mustard, white pepper, and optional hot sauce or chopped habanero.

Cook for 5-7 minutes or until rather thick. Reduce stove temperature to low.

Take a cup full of bechamel sauce mixture and add it to bowl that contains 2 whisked eggs. Slowly pour cup of sauce into eggs, whisking constantly, as not to cook/scramble eggs. Pour egg mixture back into remaining bechamel sauce.

Add 1.5 cups of shredded cheddar and pecorino romano into bechamel sauce.

Boil pasta with salt and oil until al dente/cooked but firm (about 8-10 minutes).

Drain pasta reserving about 1/2 cup of water. While still hot, return pasta to pot it was boiled in and add the reserved pasta water. Set pot aside. Be careful not to return pot to hot eye of stove.

Pour cooked pasta into pot with bechamel sauce. Stir. Season with salt (approximately 1 teaspoon).

Pour 1/2 of macaroni mixture into well greased/buttered (you can use a cooking spray to reduce the calories, Ha! Ha!) casserole dish or pan. Sprinkle with crumbly cubes of mozzarella or muenster cheese. Add remaining macaroni mixture. Top with remaining 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese.

Bake 20-30 minutes or until just beginning to turn golden brown.

 

 

Catering and Private Chef Menu

Ebullient Enterprises Catering Menu

Enjoy our delicious soups, main dishes, sides, desserts, and beverages for your next meeting, party or special occasion. Our menu reflects our most common requests. If there’s an item that you’re interested in but it doesn’t appear on the menu, please inquire with one of our ebullient consultants. We offer delivery for a fee, and will return to retrieve the dishes.

                                     Soups
All soups require a 2 quart minimum purchase.

2 quarts (serves 4-6)                               $35

4 quarts (serves 7-8)                               $60

Farmhouse Vegetable

Heirloom Tomato

Southwest Chicken

Country Turkey Noodle

Oaxaca White Chicken Chili

Loaded Baked Potato

Cream of Broccoli

Butternut Squash Bisque

Mom’s Beef Stew

Abuela’s Chicken and Dumplings

Okra Gumbo (Chicken and Sausage)

Seafood Gumbo +$15

                                Meats and Main Dishes

Choice of 2 meats and 2 sides base price $20 per person. 2 person minimum. Pricing a la cart available upon request.

Additional meat + $3 / Additional side + $2

Pork Chops (fried, smothered, or w chutney)

Meatloaf (turkey or beef)

Chicken (Herb roasted, Mojo, Smothered, Curried, Jerk, or BBQ)

Cubed Steak

Beef Short Ribs (Braised or BBQ)

BBQ Pork Ribs (Regular or Peach Tamarind BBQ sauce)

Turkey Breast

Pork Shoulder (Traditional Mojo or BBQ)

Salmon (Ginger Glazed or Jerked) + $3 per person

Shrimp (Etouffe, Curried or Grilled) + $3 per person

Jambalaya (Chicken, Andouille or Turkey Sausage, and Shrimp) + $3 per person

Stuffed Bell Peppers (Ham, Sausage, and Shrimp OR Crab and Shrimp) + $3 per person

Lasagna (Beef, Turkey, Eggplant, Cheese, or Seafood)

Bourbon Baked Spiral Ham Market Price 

                             Sides

2 quarts (serves 4-6)                               $20

4 quarts (serves 7-8)                               $40

Greens (mustard, kale, collard, or mixed)

Callaloo

Braised Kale and Cabbage

Cabbage (smothered and fried)

Roasted butter or sweet potatoes

Broccoli (steamed or roasted w or w/o parmesan)

Vegetarian Red beans and Rice (white or brown)

Vegetarian Black beans and Rice (white or brown)

Arroz con Gandules (contains pork)

Vegetarian Curry Chana and Aloo

Dahl

Jasmine, Basmati or Vegetable Fried Rice (white or brown)

Dressing (Sausage +$5)

Homestyle or Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Potato Salad

Platanos Maduros

Curried Eggplant

BBQ Baked Beans (Sausage + $5)

Corn Bread or Muffins (Regular or Jalapeño Cheese)

Breakfast/Brunch Selections

Quiche (various combinations available)                                                                                                      $23- $43

Breakfast Hash (Ham, Pork Sausage, or Turkey Sausage)                                                                    $15 per quart

Cheese Grits                                                                                                                                                                $15 per quart

Salmon Croquetts w Remoulade                                                                                                                        $2 per piece

Chicken or Tuna Salad (Fruit, Curried, or Plain) w/ an array of crackers and breads               $25 per quart

Kale Salad with Homemade Vinaigrette or Salad Dressing                                                                     $15

Sauces and Accompaniments

Peach Tamarind BBQ Sauce                                                                                                             All $10 per pint

Remoulade Sauce

Habanero Hot Pepper Sauce

Seasonal Fruit Salsa

Homemade Croutons

Grilled Cheese Croutons

Desserts

Croissant Bread Pudding w Rum Sauce                    $30

Banana Pudding                                                                 $25

Praline Cake                                                                         $25

Beverages

Flavored Lemonade (Mango, Passion Fruit, Watermelon, or Peach)                        $20 per gallon

Sangria (White or Red)                                                                                                                  $50 per gallon

Sorrel with Rum                                                                                                                               $40 per gallon

Mother White’s Gumbo Lesson (Recipe*)

Mother White's Gumbo with Potato Salad.  Rest in Peace Mother, knowing that your cooking style will live on and bless friends, family and most of all strangers!

Mother White’s Gumbo with Potato Salad.
Rest in Peace Mother, knowing that your cooking style will live on and bless friends, family and most of all strangers! Mother White was a true servant of God who served ALL of God’s people.

My grandmother was known for creating large elaborate meals when given short notice that company was coming or when guests would simply “stop by.” Mother White would call this “throwing together a little la-la.” “La la” could be anything from a rib eye steak cooked atop the stove, a pot of red beans, and of course a pot of gumbo. Why gumbo? Gumbo is a great meal for a large crowd. Now, when most people make a pot of gumbo, they might do chicken and sausage OR shrimp and crab. My grandmother’s gumbo was usually all seafood, but boy was it delicious! Gumbo crab, lump crab, shrimp, and oysters all fresh from the gulf coast.

A pot of gumbo is not complete on its own. Oh no! When preparing a pot of gumbo one must also prepare side dishes of steamed rice AND potato salad, and of course dried parsley and gumbo file powder (sassafras leaves used for thickening) sprinkled over the gumbo before serving. I’m not posting a potato salad recipe, because everyone thinks that their mother makes the best. LOL I suggest using Blue Plate mayonnaise, a little bell pepper,  a little green onion, a little creole mustard, a little sweet relish… you get the idea. But use Blue Plate mayo (found in New Orleans), it’s the best!

Often, people are hesitant about making gumbo because of the first major step, which involves making a roux. The roux is what thickens the gumbo and adds a necessary depth, which simply thickening with okra will not accomplish. Roux is often made with butter and flour, but for gumbo use vegetable oil. A large stock pot full of gumbo requires approximately 2 cups of roux, which is made from 3 cups of vegetable oil and 5 cups of all purpose flour. I will show you how to make roux below, but for now I’ll tell you that roux can be various colors from light brown similar to apple sauce to dark brown like chocolate. The color simply depends on the length of time that you cook it, I like my roux somewhere between a rich peanut buttery color to a milk chocolaty brown. In many families, mine included, the rule is that the color of the roux should be the same shade of the cooker’s back hand side (smile).

This roux is a medium brown color. To accomplish this, I cooked roux for almost an hour on low, mixing very often.

This roux is a medium brown color. To accomplish this, I cooked roux for almost an hour on low, mixing very often.

The second aspect of gumbo making that often scares people away is not knowing what to add. With most Creole cooking you always start with the trinity: bell pepper, celery, and onions. So, gumbo starts with the trinity with a few additions such as garlic, bay leaves, homemade (or purchased) shrimp/chicken stock, among other seasonings and meats such as andouille sausage, chicken, shrimp, oysters, and crabs depending on what type of gumbo you’re making. I usually add okra ti my gumbo no matter if it’s seafood or chicken because I love okra.

Holy Trinity of Creole Cooking with a few Additions

Holy Trinity of Creole Cooking with a few Additions

The final thing that you should know about gumbo is that like any other soup or stew, it tastes much better as it continues to cook and of course tastes amazing on the second, third, or fourth day (if you can wait that long lol).

*Please find my “recipe” for gumbo below. Now, full disclosure- this is not a typical recipe like the others you’ll find on this blog. You see, every single time that I make gumbo I make it differently. Also, like many of my other recipes I don’t measure. If I was to create a “standard recipe” for this it would not be correct because sometimes the roux is too thick and may require more stock. Sometimes the gumbo may taste like flour so you may need to increase the cook time. Therefore, what you’ll find below is simply a recipe guide. This “recipe” serves 10-15 people.

Ingredients 

3 cups prepared roux

2 whole yellow onions diced

5 stalks celery peeled and diced

2 green bell peppers seeded and diced

5 cloves garlic minced

2 lbs okra cut into 1/4 inch slices (ends and tops discarded)

4-6 chicken thighs (skin removed)

2 lbs andouille sausage cut into 1/4 inch circles

2 lbs lump crab claw meat

3 lbs gumbo crabs (found on the gulf coast)

1 lb oysters in their “liquor”

2 lbs shrimp (heads and shells removed and saved, deveined)

20 cups (5 quarts) of chicken AND/OR shrimp (seafood stock) – to make a stock boil 20 cups of water with shrimp heads or raw chicken pieces (1 whole chicken cut up) and 1 whole onion quartered, 4 stalks celery coarsely cut, 1 tablespoon of salt. Boil for 10 minutes, then simmer for 3-4 hours without top on pot. Strain. Allow it to cool and if using chicken skim fat off of surface.

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

5 bay leaves

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

2 tablespoon dried parsley

1.5 tablespoons Creole seasoning such as Tony’s or Slap Your Momma

1 teaspoon Cayenne pepper

Directions

Prepare your roux by placing a heavy pot over medium heat. Add 3 cups of oil and heat until almost smoking. Whisk in by the 1/2 cup full the flour. Whisk to fully incorporate each 1/2 cup before adding next cup. The roux will become smooth and thick. Keep whisking constantly. Once all flour has been added, use a spoon to continue stirring over medium low heat. Cook until roux is the desired color. Cook light brown color cook for an hour or so. For dark chocolate colored roux cook for almost two hours. Please note, times will vary based upon your stove.

oil 1

oil 2

oil 3

Remove 3 cups of roux and add to large heavy stock pot. Heat over medium high heat. Roux will be thick. Add diced yellow onions, celery, and bell pepper (the trinity). Stir to incorporate seasonings and cook for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another minute. Slowly pour in 15 cups or 4 quarts of stock, whisking as you add. This will prevent lumps from forming in your roux.

oil 4

oil 5

In a separate pan, brown sausage. Remove sausage using spotted spoon and add to roux/stock mixture. Stir. Ass bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce, and other seasonings.

gumbo meats

Bring pot to a boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly scraping the bottom of pot.

Meanwhile, in the same pot where sausage was cooked, add 2 lbs of sliced okra (fresh or frozen) over medium heat. Okra will be slimy, which is alright because slime will cook off once added to roux/gumbo pot. Too reduce slime, dice up one tomato and add to okra. The acid will reduce the slime. Once okra is tender add to pot with roux and other ingredients.

After 5 minutes reduce pot from boil to simmer. Cook on low with top off of pot for at least one hour. Taste it. If it still tastes like flour continue to simmer and add remaining 4 cups/1 quart of stock (liquid). Cook another 30 minutes. It should no longer taste like flour.

In separate heavy pot brown chicken thighs in a little oil with skin removed. Once brown, remove chicken thighs and set aside to cool. Once cool, shred chicken meat from bones. Add shredded cooked chicken to gumbo pot. Stir. Add all crab meats, oysters, parsley, and thyme. Stir. Add more Creole seasoning if needed.

gumbo chicken

Lastly, add shrimp. Cook until shrimp turn pink. Taste. If more seasoning is needed it, add it. Gumbo should look like a medium thick gravy. This is how I like my gumbo, not soupy.

Place gumbo in bowls. Sprinkle with extra dried parsley and file powder. Serve with rice and or potato salad.

Creamy Potato Soup with Bacon

This is an easy potato soup recipe. Perfect for large gatherings and for cold evenings. This recipe is vegetarian friendly by simply leaving out the bacon and using vegetable stock… but why would you want to do that? 😉 This … Continue reading

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut squash soup. The perfect first course to your Thanksgiving meal.

Butternut squash soup. The perfect first course for your Thanksgiving meal. The soup tureen is a staple in my kitchen. Great for serving soups and stews directly from the table.

 

 

I serve this soup as my first course every Thanksgiving. It is a simple soup with lots of flavor. For an added treat, I usually top it with duck confit (duck thighs that have been browned in duck fat and shredded) or browned diced ham and a little creme fraiche. Once you try this, you too will make it a staple on your Thanksgiving table.

Serves 10-12 cups OR 6-8 large bowls. 

Ingredients

3 lbs butternut or any seasonal squash peeled, seeds removed, and cut into large pieces (for easy skin removal, cut in half, remove seeds, cover in plastic wrap and microwave until slightly soft— Please note, many grocery chains now sell squash already peeled and cut up. This is a great time saver when preparing for large groups.)

2 medium yellow onions, peeled and cut into quarters

4 carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces

2 granny smith apples (although any apples that you happen to have on hand will work too), peeled and cut into quarters

1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil + 1/2 tablespoon salt

1/4 cup unsalted butter

2 quarts chicken stock

3 sprigs each: fresh thyme, and fresh sage

2 dried bay leaves

1 tablespoon ground ginger

1/2 tablespoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 cup heavy cream

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a sheet pan with foil.

Toss onions, apples, carrots, and squash with olive oil in large bowl. Place in even layer on sheet pan and sprinkle with salt.

Bake for 15- 20 minutes. Then cover with foil and bake an additional 10 minutes.  Vegetables should be soft.

Roasted squash, apple, onion, and carrot

Roasted squash, apple, onion, and carrot

Remove vegetables from oven and set pan aside.

In large heavy pot add 1 1/2 quarts of chicken stock. Reserve half of one quart for later use.

Heat on medium and add fresh thyme and sage. Reduce temperature and allow to simmer for at least 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, place roasted vegetables into blender 1-2 cups at a time. Add some of the reserved chicken stock to each batch for easy blending, Blend on low until smooth velvety consistency. If using an immersion stick/blender, simply add all vegetables and remaining stock to pot with chicken stock and blend.

Pour blended vegetables into chicken stock. Add butter, ginger, nutmeg, salt, cayenne pepper, and bay leaves. Stir. Allow soup to simmer on low for an additional 30 minutes. Remove and discard bay leaves, thyme stems, and whole sage leaves.

Remove soup from heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Slowly whisk in heavy cream (optional).

Return to pot to lowest stove setting. Soup is ready to serve.

Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup

Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup garnished with heavy cream and served with crusty bread (multi grain baguette shown here)

Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup garnished with heavy cream and served with crusty bread (multi grain baguette shown here)

Tomato soup is one of my favorite soups. And full disclosure, my favorite meal of all time is soup and sandwich. This recipe uses fresh tomatoes, but you can use your own canned fresh tomatoes from an earlier season (I’m just learning to can fresh vegetables). I love the different colors and shapes of heirloom tomatoes. As an added bonus, I add fresh carrots to this recipe. It doesn’t alter the taste, but it does increase your daily vegetable intake. I love to serve this with crusty bread, grilled cheese cubes or even  cornbread. The fresh cream that I use comes from Pittsford Dairy ; a perfect example of one of the things I missed from upstate NY while living in the deep south the last decade.

Ingredients


3 pounds fresh heirloom tomatoes (rinsed and cut in half)

3 carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces

4-6 garlic cloves peeled

3-4 sprigs fresh thyme

1 yellow onion peeled and sliced

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons coarse salt

1 and 1/2 quarts chicken stock or vegetable stock

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon sugar

3-4 dried/fresh bay leaves

1 cup heavy cream

1-2 fresh basil leaves, optional

additional salt and black pepper for taste,

Directions 

Cover cookie/baking sheet with foil. In bowl mix tomatoes, carrots, garlic, thyme and onion tossing with olive oil and salt.

Transfer to cookie/baking sheet. Roast in 425 degree F oven for 20-30 minutes or until caramelized.

Remove roasted vegetables from oven. Allow vegetables to cool and remove skin from large tomatoes (peel). Place remaining roasted vegetables in large stock/soup pot with butter. Cook an additional 5-7 minutes on medium heat. Cover with 1 quart of chicken stock. Bring to boil adding bay leaves, sugar, and additional salt and black pepper to taste. Boil for 5 minutes, then reduce heat and cook on low for 15 minutes.

Remove bay leaves and thyme and use an immersion stick to puree soup in pot until smooth. If you do not have an immersion stick, ladle soup into blender and blend 2 cups at a time. Return to pot ensuring heat is on low. Add basil leaves at this point, if using. Alternate adding heavy cream and remaining chicken stock by the 1/2 cup full.  Again, make sure stove is on low to avoid curdling of cream. Whisk thoroughly when adding each liquid.

Garnish each bowl with a splash of remaining heavy cream.

Serves 4-6.

Heirloom Tomatoes

Garlic, Onion, Tomatoes, Carrots, Thyme, and Olive Oil

Garlic, Onion, Tomatoes, Carrots, Thyme, and Olive Oil

Roasted vegetables for Tomato Soup

Roasted vegetables for Tomato Soup