Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Holiday Starters

( Stuffed Pumpkin) Cajun Shrimp
Serves 6 to 8

1 med size baking pumpkin
Wash and cut off the top, scoop out the seed and string.
With an ice-cream scoop-scoop out about 2 cups of the meat, but leave inside the pumpkin...

Place pumpkin in a large pan of water in a pre-heated oven at 400* and bake until the outside starts to feel just slightly soft.

Remove from oven and add mixture of shrimp to the pumpkin meat, stir until mixed-
Return to oven and bake another 20 to 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft to the touch.
(Shrimp Mixture for Stuffed Pumpkin)
2 pound shrimp
1/4 cup real butter
1 small red onion-chopped
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
4 garlic cloves-minced
1 tbsp lemon juice
1-1/2 tsp real salt
10 to 12 ounces can cream of shrimp soup
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tbsp soy
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
3 cups cooked long grained rice
1/4 cup grated sage goat cheese

Peel shrimp or purchase already peeled and deveined.
Melt butter in a large skillet over med-high heat.
Add onion and next 3 ingredients; saute' 7 minutes or until tender.
Add garlic, and saute' 1 minute more. Stir in lemon juice and salt-saute' 5 minutes.
Add shrimp and cook 3 minutes or until they turn pink.
Stir in soup and next 4 ingredients until well blended.

Pour into the half baked pumpkin and return to oven for 20 to 30 minutes.
Don't over bake the pumpkin, it will fall apart.

(Hazelnut and Sage Pate')

1 cup hazelnuts
1/4 cup sesame seeds
8 oz cream-cheese
2 cloves garlic crushed
1/2 tsp salt
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 tsp chopped sage
2 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp milk
Pre-heat oven to 350*
Lightly roast the hazelnuts and sesame seeds on seperate trays.
When the nuts are cool rub off the skins.
Grind the nuts and seeds together until they are like fine crumbs.
Beat the cream cheese, garlic, salt, pepper, sage and oil together.
Add the nut and seed mixture, combining well. Add the milk. The mixture needs to be fairly wet as the nuts will absorb some liquid.
Serve on small salad greens with toast.

(Tarragon Stuffed Mushrooms)

1 lb. large mushrooms
3 cups fresh breadcrumbs
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped tarragon
2 eggs
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups dry bread crumbs
Oil for deep frying
Wipe the mushrooms clean and carefully remove the stalks without damaging the caps.
Finely chop the stalks and set aside.
Place the fresh bread crumbs in a bowl and add the garlic, onion, tarragon, 1 egg, seasoning and chopped stalks.
Mix very well to form a soft stuffing.
Divide the mixture between the hollows of the mushroom caps, pressing it in well.
Beat the remaining egg in a dish and dip each mushroom into it.
Place the dry breadcrumbs into another dish and dip the egg-coated mushrooms into the bread crumbs. Coat well.
Heat about 4 cups of oil in a heavy pan.
Deep fry the mushrooms for 4 minutes in about 4 batches.
Drain on paper towel and serve with herbed mayonnaise.
Dill grows throughout Scandinavia from the farmlands of Denmark in the south to Norway, Sweden and the northern rim of Finland.
Dill also grows in middle Tennessee in abundance!
It requires long hours of summer sun to nourish the herb that puts the zing into so many of our favorite recipes.
Dill comes from the Norse...dilla, meaning "to lull," a reference I'm sure to the plant's healing power as a digestive aid and a sleeping potion.
Dill has been around a very long time, native to the Mediterranean and southern Russia, dill was a favorite of the Romans. In the first century the great chef, Apicius, described dill flavored dishes in his ten-volume cookbook, De Re Coquinaria.
The aromatic oil in dill complements seafood like no other herb or spice can match.
Dill is rich in minerals, contains potassium, sodium, sulfur and phosphorus.
The leaves are considered herbs and the stems and seed are considered spices.
If you decide to grow this lovely herb, do so by seed, I find it does not transplant very well consistently.
If you would rather you may just order from Sage Hill Farms and simply enjoy the fruits of our labor.
Now for some some recipes to delight.
(Carrot Soup with Dill Pesto)

Serves 4
2 tbsp unsalted butter
4 large carrots, sliced thin
1 large onion, chopped
1-1/4 tsp dill seed
4 cups chicken broth(i make my own,if using commercial,low salt.)
~~~~Dill Pesto~~~~
1 cup packed, coarsely chopped fresh dill
2 tbsp pine nuts
2 tbsp olive oil
Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over med. heat.
Add carrots, onion, and dill seeds and saute' until onion is clear and tender.(10 min)
Add 4 cups broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until carrots are very tender.(30 min)
Transfere soup to blender in batches and puree. Thin with more broth if desired. Season to taste with salt and fresh ground black pepper.
Combine fresh dill and pine nuts in a processor and chop finely using on/off turns. With processor running slowly add oil and process until well blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Re-warm soup. Spoon into bowls.
Divide pesto among the servings, using a knife swirl the pesto into the soup.
Both the soup and the pesto can be made a day ahead and kept in the frig. Seperately of course and covered.

Bea Kunz


Jan Verhoeff said...

I had a housefull of company coming tonight so I decided to try out Bea's Shrimp Pumpkin - We LOVE Cajun here! It was spectacular. I added in some hot peppers because we needed a warm up. YUM! That's all I've got to say - that was INCREDIBLE!

Bea always has the best recipes! I love her cajun seasonings!


Heidi Caswell said...

Who says food has to be the same old boring fare day after day. So many good recipes, more fruits and vegetables than corn, beans, carrots and peas.

Ditto that on the Cajun seasonings!

BeaK. said...

Jan and Heidi,

Thanks for the thumbs up on the pumpkin and other veggies.

Jan, I shake a little cayenne into almost everything I eat.

Wishing you bot a very Happy Holiday season!


Bea Kunz