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Creole Meal

Chef Jimmy Bannos
"Heaven On Seven"
Chicago, IL

Creole Caesar Salad
Fried Peach Pie

Creole Caesar Salad with Creole Caesar Dressing

Creole Croutons
2 cups of 3/4-inch cubed dried French or Italian white bread, crusts removed
1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon Angel Dust Cajun Seasoning (Recipe below)

Creole Caesar Dressing
1 anchovy filet (optional)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 large egg
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons Creole mustard
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon water
1/8 teaspoon Angel Dust Cajun Seasoning
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt

Half Cup of Angel Dust Cajun Seasoning
3 tablespoons Hungarian paprika
1 1/2 tablespoons Spanish paprika
5 teaspoons salt
1 1/4 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
1 1/4 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder

1 pound romaine lettuce, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces
Grated Parmesan cheese

To prepare the croutons, heat the oil in a large nonstick saute pan over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Add the bread cubes, stirring and tossing in the pan to evenly coat the bread with the oil. Sprinkle in the Cajun seasoning while stirring continuously. Toast for 5 minutes until golden brown. Reserve for garnishing the salad.

To make the dressing, place the anchovy (optional) and garlic into a food processor, cover, and pulse on and off several times. Add the egg, and with the motor running, slowly add the vegetable and olive oils. Add the cheese, mustard, lemon, and lime juices, water, Cajun seasoning, pepper, and salt; process briefly until ingredients are incorporated. Refrigerate until ready to use.

To prepare the Angel Dust Cajun Seasoning, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl until thoroughly mixed. Store in an airtight container. The spice mix keeps its best flavor for about two months.

In a large bowl, toss romaine with the dressing, allowing approximately 3 tablespoons of dressing per serving. Serve on chilled salad plates; top with croutons and additional Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

1 teaspoon Angel Dust Cajun Seasoning
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
6 ounces Andouille, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 slice of tasso ham or a honey-baked ham
3/4 cup seeded, finely diced green bell pepper
1/2 cup finely diced celery
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion, white and green parts
2 tablespoons finely diced yellow onion
2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
1 1/2 teaspoons seeded, minced jalapeno (medium)
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 cups seeded, diced plum tomatoes
1 teaspoon Roasted-Garlic Purée (Recipe below)
6 ounces rock shrimp or small shrimp, peeled and de-veined
8 ounces dried orzo, cooked according to package directions
1 1/2 cups chicken stock OR one 14 1/2 oz. can of chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Roasted-Garlic Puree (and garlic oil)
1 cup peeled garlic cloves
1 cup extra virgin olive oil

To prepare the puree, preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place the garlic in a small ovenproof container and pour in the oil. Use additional oil if needed to completely immerse all the garlic cloves. Cover the container with aluminum foil and roast 1 hour, until garlic is soft and light golden brown.

Strain the garlic and place in a blender along with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Purée to a smooth consistency, adding a small amount of oil if necessary. Pour into a container and cover the top of the puree with a thin layer of oil. Cover and store in the refrigerator.

Method for orzolya:
To prepare the orzolaya, melt the butter and oil in a large nonstick saute pan over high heat. Add the andouille and saute for 6 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium high; add the ham, stir in the bell pepper, celery, onions, jalapeno, and bay leaf; saute for 3 more minutes. Add the tomatoes, garlic purée, and remaining 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning; continue cooking for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the shrimp and cook for 2 more minutes. Stir the orzo into the mixture, pour in the chicken stock or chicken broth, and add the Worcestershire sauce, hot pepper sauce, ground black and white peppers, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer and cook for 3 minutes. Remove the bay leaf.
Serve on plates and top with cheese.

Fried Peach Pie

Sweet Pie Dough
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons ice water
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the peaches
1 pound frozen peaches, thawed, or 2 cups sliced fresh peaches
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup peach jam or preserves
Pinch of ground cayenne pepper
Pinch of ground white pepper
Vegetable oil for deep frying

To prepare the pie dough, beat together the butter, sugar, and salt for 3 minutes on medium speed in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the egg and beat for 30 seconds. Add the flour and water and beat for 15 seconds. Turn off the machine, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and beat again for 10 seconds. Scoop up the dough with your hands and form it into a 1-inch thick disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Melt the butter over medium-high heat in a medium-sized saute pan. Sauté the peaches and sugar until the sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. Add the jam or preserves, cayenne, and white pepper; cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes. Cook for 10 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough, into a 16-by-11-inch rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Cut out six 5-1/4-inch circles. (For a more free-form shape, divide the dough into six pieces and roll out.) Place the circles on a baking sheet lined with parchment or wax paper. Fill the lower half of each circle with about 1/4 cup of the cooked peaches. Fold the top half of the dough over the filling and crimp the edges securely with a fork. Refrigerate 20 minutes before frying.

Heat 2 1/2 inches of vegetable oil to 350 degrees in a heavy 4-quart saucepan. Fry pies 2 or 3 at a time until golden brown, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels. Keep warm in a 200-degree oven until all the pies are fried. Serve immediately with ice cream.

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