What to Serve – It’s Mardi Gras Time!

If you can’t go to New Orleans for Mardi Gras, then bring the Big Easy to you! Celebrate your local Bourbon Street with some Po’ Boys, Jambalaya and King Cake for dessert – and don’t forget the Hurricanes!

Shrimp Po’ Boys

Ingredients
For the Remoulade Sauce:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp dill pickle relish
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard/li>
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

For the Fried Shrimp:

  • 3 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 lbs raw medium shrimp (about 45), peeled, deveined and tail off
  • Canola or Vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tbsp hot sauce

For the Sandwich:

  • 4 8 inch long French loaves split horizontally
  • Dill pickles for garnish
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce
  • Sliced tomatoes
Directions
For the Remoulade Sauce:

  • Mix everything together and chill in the refrigerator until you are finished frying the shrimp

For the Fried Shrimp

  • Mix the salt, paprika, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and black pepper together then divide the spice mixture in half
  • Season the shrimp with half of the spice mixture
  • Mix the flour, cornmeal and the rest of the spice mixture together in a bowl
  • In a separate bowl, mix the buttermilk and hot sauce together
  • Dip seasoned shrimp in the buttermilk, then coat with flour mixture shaking off any excess. If you like a thicker coating you can repeat this step. Chill the shrimp in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
  • Pour the oil into a deep, wide pot to the depth of about 2 inches. Heat the oil to 350°
  • Working in batches, fry shrimp until golden brown about 3-4 minutes per batch. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Putting it all together:

  • Build your sandwich with on the French bread with mayonnaise or Remoulade, dress your sandwich with lettuce, tomato, and pickles then pile on the shrimp.


Jambalaya

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 lb andouille sausage sliced into rounds
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 1 large green bell pepper cored, seeded and chopped
  • 3 celery ribs chopped
  • 1 jalapeno corred, seeded & chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp hot sauce
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme chopped (or 1 teaspoon, dried)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 28 oz. can of whole tomatoes crushed, liquid reserved
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups long-grain rice
  • 1 lb large shrimp peeled & deveined
Directions

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  • Season chicken with salt & pepper
  • In a large heavy pot, preferably a Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium high heat.
    Add the chicken pieces & sauté until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from pot & cut into bite-size pieces. Set aside.
  • Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in the pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add the sausage & cooked until starting to brown, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, jalapeño & garlic. Sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the tomato paste, vinegar and hot sauce and stir to combine, about 1 minute.
  • Add the thyme, cayenne, garlic powder, chili powder and a healthy pinch of salt & pepper. Cook until aromatic, about 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the tomatoes, reserved tomato liquid, stock, bay leaves & then rice.
  • Cover & cook in the oven until the rice is nice & tender, about 45-55 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven & stir in the shrimp & cooked chicken.
  • Remove from the oven & stir in the shrimp & cooked chicken.
  • Return to the oven (covered) for 5 minutes. Remove from oven & let stand for 15 minutes.
  • Stir with wooden spoon & then plate into warmed bowls and serve at once.
  • Serve with additional hot sauce.


EASY Mardi Gras King Cake

Tradition calls for a baby to be placed in the cake to symbolize baby Jesus. Today, the baby symbolizes luck and prosperity to whoever finds it in their slice of cake. That person is also responsible for purchasing next year’s cake or for throwing the next Mardi Gras party.

If you do decide to add a plastic baby in the cake be sure to caution your guest so they don’t choke.

Ingredients

  • 2 (17.5-ounce) cans of jumbo cinnamon rolls with icing (each tube has 5 rolls)
  • 2 oz soften cream cheese
  • sugar crystals in purple, yellow & green
Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F & spray a Bundt or tube pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Pop open the cinnamon roll tubes & remove the icing. Then line the bottom with the rolls. You may have to squeeze them in there.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cinnamon rolls are no longer gooey.
  • In the meantime, mix the two icing packets with 2 ounces of softened cream cheese.
  • Once the cake is cool, spread the icing and decorate with alternating sugar colors.


Hurricanes

A hit in NOLA since the 1940s, Hurricanes are a New Orleans classic that was invented in the French Quarter.

Ingredients

  • 2 oz. light rum
  • 3 oz. dark rum
  • 6 oz. passion fruit juice
  • 6 oz. orange juice
  • 2 tbsp. grenadine
  • Ice
  • 2 Orange slices
  • 2 maraschino cherries
Directions

  • In a large liquid measuring cup, combine rums, passion fruit juice, orange juice & grenadine.
  • Pour over iced-filled glass.
  • Garnish each glass with an orange slice and a maraschino cherry.