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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Tips For Your Fresh Herbs

Frozen Fresh Basil

Frozen Fressh Basil

When certain herbs aren’t in season, I have a great tip for storing them so you’ll have fresh herbs all year long. Ice cube trays are an awesome way to do just that. You want to finely chop the herb of your choice.  Next, place them into whatever type of tray you have on hand. I have these funky rectangle ice trays that have silicone bottoms, so they are easy to pop out whatever you’ve frozen.

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I place the herbs in each one. These hold 1 tablespoon each. Next, carefully fill them up with water, and freeze.

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Once they’re frozen, I pop them out and transfer to ziplock baggies. Mark the bags with the name of the herb and the date. You’ll have fresh herbs whenever you need them.

Frozen Fressh Basil

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Cajun Style Jambalaya

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A great way to be transported to the French Quarter right from your own dining room! This one pot wonder is done in layers. What I mean is, I’m going to season and cook each layer as I go, building layers of flavor.

First is to prep all the vegetables. Next, on to the proteins for the dish.

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I marinate the chicken and shrimp in a mixture of olive oil,  Kosher salt, cracked black pepper and a Cajun seasoning blend.

Next, is to marinate the diced chicken breasts.

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Slice the sausage.

Marinate the shrimp. This is the last ingredient to go into the pot and needs to be refrigerated until they are added to the pot.

The liquids and tomato paste are ready. So we are ready to start!

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Equipment: 6 quart Dutch oven
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Cook Time 1 hour
Yields: 6-8 servings

Marinate For Chicken and Shrimp:
Shrimp:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
Chicken:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

Ingredients:
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 diced yellow onion
1 diced red bell pepper
1 diced yellow bell pepper
1 diced Poblano pepper
1 finely chopped Fresno chili
2 garlic cloves, minced
6 green onions, whites sliced,  (slice on the bias, green tops save for garnish)
1 tbsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
1-12 ounce package Andouille sausage sliced ( 5 links)
2 boneless- skinless chicken breast (about 1 pound)
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tbsp. tomato paste
2 tsp. Cajun seasoning blend
1-1/4 cups long grain white rice
1-(28 oz.) can crushed fire roasted tomatoes
3 cups of unsalted chicken stock

Directions:
1. In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, heat olive. Add garlic, Fresno chili, white parts of green onion, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Saute for about 1 minute.

2. Add in marinated diced chicken. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes

3. Add in bell peppers, diced onion, diced Poblano pepper, tomato paste, sliced Andouille sausage , and stir through. Cook until fragrant, about 4 minutes.

4. Add unsalted chicken stock, Cajun seasoning blend, crushed fire roasted tomatoes and rice. Reduce heat to medium low heat.  Cover with tight fitting lid and cook until rice is tender and liquid is almost absorbed, about 25 minutes.

5. Add the shrimp to the pot and cook until shrimp are pink and cooked through, about 3-5 minutes.

6. Turn heat off and stir in green onion tops for garnish and serve.

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Cabbage Soup

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Cabbage soup has to be one of my very favorites when it comes to food for the soul. I find, if your a fan of stuffed cabbage than you will love this soup. For this soup, I’m using an 8 quart stock pot. This size pot will hold enough liquid and cabbage needed for this recipe. I’m also using Savoy cabbage (green cabbage is fine as well) and a 90% lean ground sirloin which will make for a healthier and better tasting soup.

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Yields, 6 servings
Equipment: 8 quart stock pot
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40-45 minutes

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2-1/2 pounds ground sirloin
5 cups of chopped Savoy cabbage ( or green cabbage)
1 cup of diced onions
1 cup of diced carrots
2 bay leaves
2 cloves of minced garlic
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 tablespoon of black pepper
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup of quick cooking rice  (quick cooking rice in a bag)
2 quarts of unsalted chicken stock
2 cups of good tomato juice
Home-made croutons for garnish
Grated Parmigiano- Reggiano cheese for garnish

Directions:
The very first thing I do is to prep all the veggies that will be going into the soup so they will be ready for me when I need them. This includes the onions ,garlic, carrots, and cabbage.

So I just start out with a little olive oil in the bottom of the pot. You need that because the meat is very lean. On med high heat, I add the ground sirloin, breaking the meat up with a wooden spoon, and start the browning process.  To the ground sirloin, I add in the Kosher salt, black pepper, tomato paste, and some crushed red pepper flakes. Once the meat has browned completely, about 5-7 minutes,

I add in the diced onions and minced garlic. I cook those together letting the onions start to soften, another couple of minutes. Next, the diced carrots, stirring those through. I let all this cook together for another 5 minutes.

With the stove still on med- high heat, I add in the unsalted chicken stock. Once the stock is added, carefully, with my wooden spoon, scrape up any bits that may be stock to the bottom of the pot.  Lowering the heat to medium,  I slowly add in the chopped Savoy cabbage. Using the wooden spoon to push the cabbage down into the liquid.

As the Savoy cabbage softens and has all been submerged into the chicken stock, I add in a cup of quick cooking rice. All that is, is the rice you can buy and cook in the pouch. I just remove it from the pouch and add it right into the pot. I let all this simmer (adjust the heat, if needed, to a slow simmer) for 20 minutes stirring occasionally.

Finally, the very last ingredient I add is tomato juice. I add that right at the end, stirring it completely through. I then turn the heat off and cover the soup. Letting all those flavors mingle together for about 10 minutes or so before serving. Remove the bay leaves before serving.  I garnish with some home-made Ciabatta croutons and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. You can find my recipe for my homemade croutons very easily. Type, Ciabatta croutons into the “search bar” at the top of my home page.

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Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle

Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle

Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle

This dish is one you’ll want to serve to family and friends. I just loved the response I received. I know that once you make my Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle, it will be something you’ll make again and again. Let’s get started.

The star of this dish is the beef short ribs. I want to let you know that this cut of meat can be expensive. My butcher happens to carry both styles of beef short ribs, bone-in and boneless. The boneless type of beef short ribs is cut from either chuck or plate and consist of rib meat. I’m going to use both bone-in and boneless beef short ribs in my Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle.

Whenever making this type of dish, it’s important to prep all the vegetables.

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I have 2 1-pound packages of boneless and a 1 2-pound package of bone-in beef short ribs. Above you will see that I have set the meat out on a paper towel to pat them completely dry on all sides. The reason for this is to get a good sear on the outside of the meat.

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I toss all the meat in some olive oil, Kosher salt, and pepper, and then spread them out onto 2 baking sheets. They will go into the oven at 450-degrees F. for 15-20 minutes.

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This is what they will look like when they come out. While the short ribs are roasting in the oven, on top of the stove the base for the sauce starts. You want to use a large braising pot or any type of heavy bottom pot like a Dutch oven.

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Now at this point, I have my liquids for this dish ready and on standby.

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You do not want to cover the veggies completely with liquid, just about 1/2 of the way up, because the veggies will release their own liquid.

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Cover, carefully transfer the pot the oven. Cook for 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 hours.

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WOW! Does this look amazing? So now I going to remove the meat take the bones out and shred the meat.

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I have to say, by adding the sweet potato to this dish gives a nice sweetness. To thicken the sauce I process the veggies in a food processor. Be careful when processing hot liquids not to fill the processor more than a third of the way full.

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Start ladling the veggies into the processor.

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This is what the thickened sauce will look like when you’re done.

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Add all the shredded beef short rib meat to the sauce, stir to combine. Cover to keep hot.

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This Artisanal pasta cooks for only 8 minutes. You want to cook the pasta to the al-dente stage.

Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle

Equipment: 6-quart Dutch oven, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, food processor, large stockpot for cooking pasta

Ingredients:
2 1-pound packages of boneless beef short ribs
12-pound package of bone-in beef short ribs
1/3 cup of good olive oil
2 1/2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper

3 tablespoon of good olive oil
5 large cloves whole garlic, peeled
2 ribs of celery, 2 1/2 inch dice
1 sweet potato, peeled 2 1/2 inch dice
2 medium-size carrots, 2 1/2ich dice
1 red and yellow bell pepper, 2 1/2 inch dice
1 large sweet onion, 2 1/2 inch dice
1 1/2 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 fresh bay leaves, substitute dry
6 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, without their liquid
2 1/2 cups of Cabernet Sauvignon
3 cups of unsalted beef stock
Garnish with fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley
Garnish with shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

2 packages of Pappardelle

 

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450-degrees F.

Lay all the short ribs in a single layer onto paper towels. Take another paper towel and pat the tops dry too. Once dry, transfer the short ribs to a large mixing bowl. Add olive oil, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Toss together until all the ribs are coated.

Lay the seasoned short ribs in a single layer onto 2 rimmed baking sheets. Roast for 15-20 minutes until caramelized.

While the short ribs are roasting dice the vegetables, tie the herbs up together with kitchen twine (herb bouquet), and have all the liquids premeasured for the dish.

In a Dutch oven on medium heat, add the olive oil. To that add the diced onions, diced sweet potato, diced carrots, diced celery, and diced bell peppers. Season with Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Let sautè for 10 minutes until softened and golden brown.

Add tomato paste to the pot, and stir to combine. Add 1 cup of the Cabernet, stirring and scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pot until clean. Add the remaining red wine and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the whole garlic cloves, unsalted beef stock, and the tied up fresh herbs.

Adjust the oven temperature to 350-degrees F.

Remove the short ribs from the oven and transfer them to the pot. Bring the liquid to a simmer on medium-high heat. Cover the Dutch oven and place it into the oven. Cook until the short ribs are very tender, 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 hours.

Carefully remove the cooked short ribs from the pot. Let cool down enough before handling. As soon as the ribs are cool enough, remove the meat from those that have bones. Using two forks shred all the meat into small pieces.

Thicken the sauce in small batches.  First, remove the herb bouquet. Ladle 1/3 of the liquid into a food processor. Note: Be very careful when processing hot liquids. Place the lid on and hold, with one hand, a dish towel over the top opening. Transfer the thickened sauce, from the food processor to a large bowl until all the sauce has been processed.

Return the thickened sauce back into the pot along with the shredded beef short ribs, stir to combine. Cover to stay hot while making the pasta. If you have a burner with a “warm” setting, that’s perfect.

Fill a large stockpot with water. Set over high heat and bring to a boil. Salt well and stir in pasta. Cook until pasta is al dente. Drain pasta. Add the drained pasta to a large serving platter. Ladle the Beef Short Rib Ragu over the pasta and gently toss.

Garnish the Beef Short Rib Ragu With Pappardelle with fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley and shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Serve immediately.

 

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