Monday, April 27, 2009

Fried Oysters Served On A Bed Of Pasta With Steamed Green Beans & Hollandaise

Whenever I go to visit my good friend in San Antonio I always take a couple of large ice chests for when we make our trip to Groomer's Seafood. I adore Groomer's Seafood and they know I love them for all of the wondrous seafood they supply me with.

It's difficult to get good, fresh seafood out here in the dry flatlands of West Texas, so when I go there I drool a lot. I think they like that.
Anyway, the last time I went there, I stood and watched as the employees shucked my oysters. Yes, I was drooling in anticipation of having fried oysters. I also looked on as they cut up my fresh tuna into 2" steaks. I was also able to buy some lovely salmon, some flounder, huge shrimps and some Red Snapper.

They always pack everything in ice for me, with enough to last me the five-1/2 hour trip home. I love that place!
Anyway, once I arrived home it was decided that we should have the oysters first. While draining the oysters, I found a lovely little pearl, which is the second I've found in a year. If this keeps up, I'll have a necklace in about 15 or 20 years. So here is my recipe for Fried Oysters:

Fried Oysters:


1 dozen oysters, shucked

1 cup of flour

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

1/2 cup cornmeal

1 egg, beaten (with 1 tablespoon water added)

salt, to taste

pepper, to taste

cooking oil


1. In large bowl, combine the flour, salt, and pepper .

2. In a medium size bowl, beat the egg with water added.

3. On a newspaper, combine the breadcrumbs and cornmeal. I like to use surgical gloves in the kitchen, which really come in handy for messy jobs such as this

4. While the oil is heating in the pan, roll each oyster lightly in the flour mixture.

5. Roll each oyster in the egg then dip in the breadcrumbs mixture, making sure that each is evenly coated.

6. Once your oil is heated to almost smoking, you can begin adding each oyster.

7. While these are cooking, you can bread another batch of oysters and have them ready to go.

8. When the first batch is done, drain them on a wire rack with paper towels and place in a warm oven.

9. Repeat this process until all oysters are done.

10. Serve with Hollandaise sauce and/or Horseradish Cocktail sauce.

Hollandaise Sauce: Ingredients:

1 cup of butter
4 eggs 1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh minced parsley  


1. Heat butter until melted & bubbling.

2. Combine with all other ingredients in a blender.

3. With blender turned on, pour butter into yolk mixture in a slow stream until all is added.

4. Turn blender off and use the sauce or store in refrigerator up to 4 days.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Quick Quiche Lorraine With Roasted Asparagus And Walnut Crema....

I have not made Quiche in several years, so last night when I was late getting dinner started, I pulled out a frozen, ready-made piecrust in the pan. Normally, I'd make my own piecrust, but time didn't allow me that luxury last night. I already had all of the ingredients on hand, so it was just a matter of some chopping and assembly. I had also wanted to try Evil Chef Mom's Roasted Asparagus Spears with Walnut Crema. Since I had all of the ingredients on hand, I went for that as well. Let me just tell you that it's even better than it sounds. Her recipe is for a large crowd so I cut it down to work for just the two of us. Therefore, you can adjust accordingly, to however many people you are serving. Also, I didn't have the pecorino cheese on hand that Krysta's recipe called for, so I just substituted with Parmesan cheese. In spite of that, it was awesome. You know, it's not easy to improve on nature's fresh asparagus, steamed, but this was really a different twist to plain old steamed asparagus and we loved it so much that we've decided to have it again tonight. I know. We are total Asparagus freaks and have it as often as we can during its best season, which is right now. So… let's get this show on the road, shall we?

Quiche Lorraine Ingredients:

1 Frozen Pie Crust, ready made

1/4 cup of diced green, red and yellow bell peppers

1/2 cup of chopped fresh mushrooms

1/2 cup of onion, diced 1 cup of smoked ham, chopped into small pieces

5 eggs, beaten

1/2 cup of fat-free Half & Half

1/4 cup of finely chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup of Swiss cheese, shredded

1/2 cup of cheddar cheese, shredded


1. In a saucepan, sauté the onion, bell peppers, mushrooms and garlic until tender.

2. Sprinkle half of the cheddar and half of the Swiss cheese and half of the chopped ham over the bottom of the piecrust.

3. Cover evenly with the vegetable mix.

4. Beat the eggs and blend in the cream and the parsley.

5. Pour over mixture in the piecrust.

6. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 40 to 50 minutes or when knife inserted comes out clean.

7. If need be, cover the edges of the crust to prevent it getting too dark.

Roasted Asparagus With Walnut Crema:

Ingredients For The Walnut Crema:

Kosher salt 1/4 cup of walnuts, crushed

1 Tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

1 small onion, diced

Roasted Asparagus:

extra virgin olive oil

3 bunches of asparagus

kosher salt

1/4 cup of walnuts,

crushed grated pecorino (or Parmesan) cheese


1. Lay the asparagus spears on a foil lined cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil, shaking the pan to evenly coat spears.

2. Roast in a 500-degree oven to desired doneness, or about 5 minutes.

3. When done, remove spears to a serving dish and sprinkle the Walnut Crema over the asparagus. Serve hot.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

King Ranch Chicken Casserole... A Texas Staple

In Texas, everyone knows of Bob Kleburg and his famous 15 million acre King Ranch located in South Texas. It grew from its early days as a Mexican hacienda to a South Texas Cattle Ranch and ultimately, an international corporate agribusiness. It all began with Richard King, who was a steamboat-captain-turned-South-Texas-cattle-rancher-landowner. This recipe is the perfect reflection of that easy-going ranch lifestyle, reflecting the Mexican influence as well. It is truly the best casserole I make and is served in most Texas homes at one time or another.

Since there are now just the two of us here at home, I usually split this recipe into two or three separate casserole dishes and freeze them for future use. It's such a treat some nights to just toss a casserole dish into the oven and have dinner ready an hour later. Enjoy!

King Ranch Chicken Casserole:


1 whole baked chicken, boned & cut into bite size chunks

1 large green bell pepper, chopped

1 large red bell pepper, chopped

1 large onion, chopped

1/2 stick of butter

1 can of Cream of Mushroom soup

1 can of Cream of Chicken soup

1 10 oz. can of Rotel chiles & tomatoes

12 soft corn tortillas cut or torn into bite size pieces

1/4 cup of chicken broth

2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese


1. Place cut up corn tortillas in bottom of casserole dish.

2. Pour a little of the chicken broth over the tortillas.

3. In a large skillet, sauté the onion and bell peppers in the butter until almost transparent.

4. Set aside to cool.

5. In a separate bowl, combine the soups with the Rotel, mixing well.

6. Add the onion & bell pepper mixture, stirring well.

7. In 13 x 9" glass casserole dish, arrange alternate layers of tortillas, soup mixture, and grated cheese, until all ingredients are used.

8. Bake in 350 degree pre-heated oven for 50 minutes or until heated through & bubbly & cheese is browned.

9. May be frozen for future use before or after cooking.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Eddie V's Edgewater Grille on 5th Street in Austin, Texas... Wow!

Oh. My. God. We had the most amazing dinner at Eddie V's while in Austin last week. The service was impeccable and none of us could find fault with a single item we ordered. Of course, we had to take out a loan (just kidding) to pay for it, but it was worth every last little cent.

First of all, let me just say they have an outstanding air conditioning system and aren't afraid to use it. Being menopausal, I appreciate any establishment that caters to my physical needs. I never had so much as a slight hot flash, so I was literally in Heaven. I think I even got goose bumps. Seriously.

Our daughter flew in from L. A. for her birthday and our son took time out from college life at St. Edwards University to join us. Since they both have April birthdays, this was their big celebration dinner. Our waiter Jeff was one of the best waiters we've ever had the good fortune to find. To his credit, he didn't once interrupt us in mid-conversation, which is as it should be. He politely waited for us to finish, and look at him. It truly irritates me when wait staff interrupts me in mid-sentence, because I can never remember what I was saying afterwards. Yes, I'm that old.

We began the evening with cocktails, all having extra dry dirty vodka martinis that were just perfect. To us, a good bartender always knows how to make a great dry martini, so we weren't disappointed in the least.

For appetizers we always have to order Calamari because that's the only "starter" our son likes. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was different than the usual fried Calamari with Marinara sauce, which has gotten boring. Instead, they served their Kung Pao-style Calamari on a bed of crispy rice noodles, drizzled with a dynamite sweet & hot sauce, and topped with tiny sprouts.

Then, they offered us chopsticks to eat it with, which the daughter and I love.
We also ordered the Tartare of Ahi Tuna, served with delicious homemade onion flatbread, which was also very different than we've had other places. It's seasoned with sesame and curry oils and has avocado added, with the waiter expertly preparing it for you table-side. The tuna was almost "Heavenly" and we devoured every last bite.

Not once did our waiter try to rush us, which scored another feather in his cap. I like for dinner to be more of an event, than just a rushed meal.

Next, we each had a delightful Caesar salad. Their Caesar dressing is sheer deliciousness.

For an entrée, my husband ordered the Sautéed Lemon Sole In Parmesan Crust, which was just delicious.

Our daughter ordered the Chilean Sea Bass, Roasted Crisp and ate it all before I had the chance to taste it. Apparently, it was very good.

Our son ordered their 16-ounce USDA Prime New York Strip Steak and commented that it was cooked better than any he'd ever had. He doesn't eat meat unless he is with us, since he can't afford it on his college allowance.

I ordered the Grilled Atlantic Salmon and it was absolutely perfectly cooked, unlike many places we've been that torture me with over-cooking it.
For the side dishes, we chose their made-from-scratch Truffled Macaroni & Cheese "Gratinata" and the Potato Gruyere Fritters. Both dishes were superb and we ate until we could eat no more. Let me just interject here that I was terribly tempted to take the potato fritters with me. They were simply to die for.

After resting and sipping our lovely wine, we finally agreed that we should order dessert and
split two choices, since we were all full. We finally decided on their magnificent Hot Dark Chocolate Godiva Cake with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (prepared tableside) and the Crème Brulee with Homemade Cookies. Both desserts were divine, as we fought over the last bites.

Would I recommend Eddie V's Edgewater Grille? Absolutely. Without doubt. This lovely dining establishment is worthy of every one of the five stars it has been given by Austinites.

The presentation of each and every dish was magnificent as was the food itself. Eddie V's Edgewater Grille receives 5 stars on every point from me. I can't wait to return.