Saturday, March 16, 2013

Life and Crawfish Monica

Folks, it's the time of year I love best.  Spring has sprung, even here in drought ridden South Texas.  Life has continued during my absence of blog land.  I've had the pleasure of being a substitute teacher to many elementary aged children and it is true what they say, kids do say the darnedest things.

Why, just the other day, as I was lining up a classroom of second graders, a boy asked, while looking up at me, "how can I can I get some holes in his face like that?"  Puzzled and somewhat distracted by the group of talkers at the back of the line, I looked down and asked him, "What?," to which he pointed at his own dimple-less cheeks.  It immediately dawned on me that he was referring to my dimples, which are quite deep, ditches you might say, and I had to laugh.  I told him that you just had to be born with them.

Another boy was explaining how he thought he caught Malaria from a box of dirt he'd been digging through.  See, the dirt was from Haiti; his parents, both missionaries, had brought it back.  I was thoroughly entertained with his self-diagnosis.  Kids do say the darnedest things.

In my spare time, I've been working on watering the yard in hopes to green it up and have been cleaning up all the dead from the winter.  Tomato plants are in the ground and herbs are soon to follow, just as soon as I can chicken proof the herb box.  Our hens, it turns out, are fans of cilantro and parsley.

I've also had time to try a few new recipes.  Here's a great one for crawfish, called Crawfish Monica; this pasta pleased the whole family.  Here 'tis...
my photo
Crawfish Monica recipe
Crawfish Monica (Photo from Flickr by muckster


1 pound linguine or fettucine (I used the rotini pasta as pictured above)
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup chopped yellow onions
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows (Instead of making a large batch of Emeril's Essence, I guesstimated by adding a little of each ingredient, approximately 1/2 tsp. paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, etc., a small shake of cayenne pepper and so on.  It's better to add a little and then add more to taste than adding too much and ruining the dish.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 pound crawfish tails*
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 cup grated Parmesan


Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid. Return to the pot and toss with the olive oil and reserved cooking liquid. Cover to keep warm.
In a large saute pan or skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, Essence, salt, and cayenne, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the white wine and cook over high heat until nearly all evaporated. Add the cream lemon juice and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced. Add the crawfish tails and cook, stirring, to warm through. Add the onions and parsley and cook for 1 minute. Add the cooked pasta and toss to coat with the sauce. Cook until the pasta is warmed through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and add 1/2 cup of the cheese.
Turn out into a serving bowl and top with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese. Serve.
*Crawfish tails can be purchased online and shipped through Cajun Grocer. Peeled medium shrimp can be substituted, but the cooking time must be increased to allow thorough cooking.

Emeril’s ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Yield: 2/3 cup
Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse on Food Network.

 Here's a final shot of my bowl before I dug in.  I added a sprinklin' of Cajun seasoning to my bowl before I ate and it was perfect.
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DFW said...

That crawfish dish looks wonderful. Hope you don't mind that I pinned it. I'll most likely make it w/shrimp since that it what we have fairly readily available (fresh off the shrimp boat). We have a friend whose FIL is the captain & owner. And, we only live about 5 miles from the marina.

Michelle said...

Oh gosh. Crawfish and creamy sauce. Makes me smile--which means the holes in my face are really deep!
Thank you for linking up!

Tammy @ A Walk in the Countryside said...

Looks delicious! I'm definitely trying this!

Terry said...

This looks wonderful!

Lynn Huntley said...

Stopping by from See You in the Gumbo~ This looks fantastic:) Lynn @ Turnips 2 Tangerines