Thursday, August 25, 2011

Deviled Crab...and more

from Momma's kitchen...

I have always loved Momma's Deviled Crabs...earliest memories are that they frequented our table, especially when we would spend a month on the Bayside of Pensacola Beach during the summer. Daddy was an architect and would drive into town each day.

More often than not, the Deviled Crab might also be served when a Shrimp or Crab boil was going on at the beach! Surprisingly, at that time, blue crabs were more plentiful and we would drop cages at the end of the pier to collect our bounty...we would also wade out into the water with our nets and scoop them up!

In later years, Momma moved to LA (Algiers) not Lower Alabama! The same recipe held a fond place for all whether we were visiting there or they had come to Alabama. Not having the supply of fresh crab, Momma would buy the foil shells at Schwegman's (sp?) and bring to me so that I could make them any time of year. My children also love them and request them for any seafood meal we are having. They then hurry to gather up any that might be left to go home with them!

Momma's Deviled Crab
Abby Richardson aka Little MawMaw

2 Tbsp. flour
2 Tbsp. butter
1 cup milk
1 sleeve of saltine crackers, finely crushed
1 small onion, finely diced
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. parsley flakes
1 pound flaked crabmeat
Melt butter in small saucepan, add flour and stir well. Add milk and bring to a boil over medium low heat, stirring with a whisk until thickened. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
Mix with remaining ingredients. Shape into small mini loaves, spoon into ramekins or spoon into the foil shells. Place on cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees 15-20 minutes until golden.
Serve with bottles of Worcestershire and hot sauce on the side! Enjoy!

I think the simplicity of this recipe is one thing that makes it so tasty! Unlike most crab cakes, it really lets the taste of the crab shine through!

Speaking of crab, another favorite now added to my repertoire is Crab Au Gratin! Rick talked of Crab Au Gratin that he had in Thibodaux years ago, so I ventured to make it for his birthday! Definitely, another keeper!!!

Crab Au Gratin 
4 oz grated American cheese
1 tbsp garlic
1/4 lb butter
1/2 cup flour
1 cup milk
1 lb lump crabmeat
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 tsp each of red & white pepper
2 tbsp parsley
1 tsp salt
3 sticks finely chopped celery
1 tbsp Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
1. Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat.
2. Add flour until thickened.
3. Cook this roux over low heat, stirring often for 10 minutes.
4. Be sure not to brown your roux, it should be a white roux.
5. Add celery, stir and cook for 3 minutes.
6. Add cheese, whipping cream, milk, parsley and seasonings.
7. Cook until cheese is melted and sauce thickens.
8. Fold in crabmeat and transfer to 4 - 6 oval ramekins.
9.  Top with sprinkling of additonal cheese. Brown in oven and serve.
Bon Appetit!

Oven Chicken Cacciatore

Check it out here also: Southern Plate Meal Planning

This is a great meal for entertaining...put the cacciatore together and get it in the oven, make a nice salad, some crusty bread and something yummy & delish for dessert (maybe Tiramisu!).

Oven Chicken Cacciatore
Paula Davis George
published in
 "Favorites Around the Table" 2000
1 lb. vermicelli or your favorite pasta
6 chicken breast halves
(or 1 cut up chicken, 8 pieces)
1 medium onion, sliced
1 medium bell pepper, cut in strips
1 medium zucchini, sliced
1 (1 lb.) pkg. sliced fresh mushrooms
1 (4.25 oz.) can sliced black olives, drained
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
Fresh Grated Parmesan Cheese
1. Cook vermicelli or other pasta according to package directions. Prepare last 15 minutes of Cacciatore cooking time.
2. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Sear chicken pieces in large skillet 5 minutes per side to crisp skin. Place chicken in a large casserole (I use my large Cuisinart pan). Cover with onion,  bell pepper, zucchini, mushrooms and olives.
3. In large bowl, combine tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, pepper, basil, oregano and garlic powder;
   mix well. Pour over chicken and vegetables. Cover casserole with foil.
4. Bake 1 hour. Remove foil; bake an additional 30 minutes. Spoon chicken mixture over vermicelli.
   Sprinkle with cheese.
Yields: 6 servings
***After making this for years, these are the adaptations that I have made.
   I also add 1 Tbsp. sugar to the sauce, to cut the acidity of the tomatoes and use 2 tsp. minced garlic instead of the garlic powder. Of course fresh herbs can also be used for the basil and oregano!