Mardi Gras Recipes

  • Creole Jambalaya

    Jambalaya is a Spanish-Creole dish, which is a great favorite in New Orleans, and is made according to the following recipe:

    l 1/2 Cupfuls of Rice
    A Pound of Fresh Pork
    A Slice of Ham
    A Dozen Fine Chaurice (Pork Sausage)
    2 Onions
    2 Tablespoonfuls of Butter
    2 Cloves of Garlic
    2 Sprigs Each of Thyme and Parsley
    2 Bay Leaves
    2 Cloves, Ground Very Fine
    3 Quarts of Beef Broth, or Hot Water (Broth Preferred)
    1/2 Spoonful of Chili Pepper
    Salt, Pepper and Cayenne to Taste

    CUT THE PORK VERY FINE, lean and fat, into pieces of about half an inch square. Chop the onions very fine, and mince the garlic and fine herbs. Grind the cloves. Put two tablespoonfuls of butter into the saucepan, and add the onions and pork, and let them brown slowly. Stir frequently, and let them continue browning slightly.

    When slightly brown, add the ham, chopped very fine, and the cloves of garlic. Then add the minced herbs, thyme, bay leaf and parsley and cloves. Let all this brown five minutes longer, and add a dozen fine Chaurice, cut apart, and let all cook five minutes longer.

    Then add the three quarts of water or broth, always using in preference the broth. Let it all cook for ten minutes, and when it comes to a boil add the Rice, which has been carefully washed. Then add to this a half teaspoonful of Chili pepper, and salt and Cayenne to taste. The Creoles season highly with Cayenne.

    Let all boil a half hour longer, or until the rice is firm, and serve hot. Stir often, to mix all well. You will then have a real Creole Jambalaya. Some use the brisket of veal instead of the pork, but there is no comparison in the flavor, the pork being so superior. But again, this is a matter of taste.
  • Crawfish Bisque

    8 Dozen Fine Large Crawfish
    3 Onions
    A Carrot
    A Bunch of Celery
    2 Sprigs of Thyme
    2 Bay Leaves
    4 Sprigs of Parsley
    6 Cloves
    2 Blades of Mace
    A Clove of Garlic
    2 Tablespoonsfuls of Butter
    2 Quarts of Oyster Liquor
    A Dash of Cayenne Pepper
    A Pod of Cayenne Pepper, Without the Seeds
    A Cupful of Bread
    Salt and Pepper to Taste

    Take about eight dozen fine, large Crawfish and wash throroughly, being careful to cleanse of every particle of dust or sand. Set to boil in about a gallon of water.

    When boiled, take the Fish out of the water; save the water. Pick out two dozen of the largest Crawfish, pick out the inside of the tails and save the heads, cleaning them of every particle of meat. Set this meat to one side with the shells of the head. Pick the meat from the rest of the Crawfish, saving all the shells.

    Take one large onion, a carrot, a bunch of celery, a sprig of thyme, one bay leaf, three sprigs of parsley, six cloves and two blades of mace, one clove of garlic; chop all very fine and put into the pot of water in which the Crawfish were boiled.

    Add all the picked meat, exception the reserved tails, and all the shells of the bodies and heads, except the reserved heads. Add one cup of rice and let it all boil till the mixture becomes thick and mushy. When it is well cooked, take it off the fire and mash the shells thoroughly, and the meat also, and strain all through a sieve.

    Take about a tablespoonful of butter and two quarts of oyster liquor and add this to the Soup, seasoning to taste with Cayenne, salt and black pepper. Set to boil slowly.

    In the meantime, take the reserved Crawfish meat and make a Stuffing as follows for the reserve heads:

    Chop an onion very fine and let it brown in a tablespoonful of butter. Squeeze thoroughly a cup of bread wet with water. When well squeezed, mix with a little milk, sufficient to make a paste, season to taste and mix with the well-seasoned Crawfish meat. Chop another onion and put in melted butter, and add the Crawfish Stuffing letting all fry about ten minutes, adding, in the meantime, a finely chopped sprig each of thyme and parsley and a bay leaf, and mixing thoroughly.

    Take off the fire and stuff the reserved heads of Crawfish. Put on every stuffed head a dot of butter, set in the oven and bake ten minutes. Place stuff heads in the tureen and pour the Soup over. Serve with Croutons of buttered toast, passing them in a seperate dish.
  • Turkey Gumbo

    The Remains of a Turkey
    1/2 Pound of Lean Ham
    2 Tablespoons of Butter, or 1 of Lard
    A Bay Leaf
    3 Sprigs of Parsley
    3 Dozen Oysters
    A Large Onion
    A Sprig of Thyme
    2 Quarts of Oyster Liquor
    1/2 Pod of Red Pepper, Without the Seeds
    2 Tablespoonfuls of File
    Salt, Pepper and Cayenne to Taste

    Chop turkey fine and add to the hot lard, and then put in the ham, cut fine into dice shape. Cover closely and fry for about five or ten minutes.

    Then add the onion, parsley and thyme, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. When nicely browned add the boiling water and throw in the bones and carcass of the Turkey.

    Add the oyster stock which has been thoroughly heated. Add the bay leaf, chopped very fine, and the pepper pod, cut in two, and set the Gumbo back to simmer for about an hour longer.

    When nearly ready to serve dinner, and while the Gumbo is boiling, add the fresh oysters. Let the Gumbo remain on the stove for about three minutes longer and then remove the pot from the fire.

    Have ready the tureens, set in a bainmarie, or hot water bath, for once the "File" is added the Gumbo must never be warmed over.

    Take two tablespoonfuls of the "File" and drop gradually into the pot of boiling hot Gumbo, stirring slowly to mix thoroughly. Serve with Boiled Rice.

    Sweet Potato Pudding

    A Pint of Mashed Sweet Potatoes
    1/2 Pound of Sugar
    1/2 Pound of Butter 8 Eggs
    The Juice and Rind of an Orange and Lemon
    1/4 Spoonful Each of Ground Mace, Cinnamon and Allspice
    1/4 of a Grated Nutmeg
    2 Tablespoonfuls of Brandy
    1/2 Cupful of Sherry

    Grate the Potatoes and mash them though a sieve, if you use them raw. If you use the cold boiled Potatoes, simply mash them.

    Beat the butter and the sugar to a rich cream, and add the well-beaten yolks of the eggs, and then add the grated Potatoes and the spices, and finally the whites of the eggs, beaten to a stiff froth. Mix all well.

    Add the liquors. Turn into a buttered baking pan, and let the Pudding bake in a moderate oven for three-quarters of an hour. The addition of the liquor is optional.

    Serve hot or cold, with a Cream Sauce.
  • Boiled Grits

    Under the heading of Corn might properly be classed the White Corn Grits, without which no breakfast in Louisiana is considered complete. Grits are not only used for breakfast, but may appear on the table several times a day, the left-over Grits from breakfast being utilized either in dainty cakes or entremets, or else warmed over, and served with gravies. This is a most delicious dish.

    2 Cupfuls of Grits
    2 Quarts of Water
    2 Teaspoonfuls of Salt

    WASH THE GRITS in fresh cold water, and throw off the refuse. Wash again and drain. Into two quarts of cold water put the Grits. Add the salt, and stir frequently while they are coming to the boiling point. Then set back on the stove and let them cook slowly for about an hour. It must be of the consistency of a very thick starch, or drier, if so preferred. For invalids it may be cooked like a Cornmeal Mush. Serve hot, with any meat, with gravy, or serve with milk, as Oatmeal, as a preliminary to breakfast, or, again, simply eat with butter. In any manner in which they are served they are always relishable and palatable. If half milk, instead of water, is added in cooking, the dish is all the more delicious.
  • King Cake with cream cheese and fruit filling

    There are many recipes for this Carnival staple, but we like this one from the late Myriam Guidroz, a longtime food columnist for The Times-Picayune. It's based on a brioche dough, and can be made with or without the filling. Those using a bread-making machine should follow a recipe for brioche or sweet roll dough.

    Basic King Cake Dough
    1 envelope dry yeast
    1/4 cup warm water
    1/2 cup milk
    1 cup (2 sticks) butter
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 egg yolks
    2 whole eggs
    4 cups, approximately, unbleached flour
    Mix the yeast with the warm water. Stir 1 teaspoon of the sugar and 1 teaspoon of the flour into the yeast and set aside. By the time you have measured the other ingredients, the yeast should be beginning to bubble and show signs of life.

    Bring the milk to a boil and stir in the butter and the sugar. Pour into a large bowl; the mixture should be lukewarm. Beat in the egg yolks, whole eggs and the yeast.

    Beat in approximately 2 cups of flour, until the dough is fairly smooth, then gradually add enough additional flour to make a soft dough that you can form into a ball. Knead it, by hand or machine, until smooth and elastic. Lightly oil a bowl, turn the dough once or twice in it to grease it lightly all over, cover with a cloth and leave to rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

    Pat the dough down and cover the bowl with a damp towel, plastic film over that and refrigerate until the next day. This recipe makes enough dough for two king cakes. Extra dough may be frozen, or make two king cakes and freeze one. Thaw frozen cake and reheat 10 minutes in a 375-degree oven.


    1/2 recipe king cake (above)
    1 (16-ounce) can cherry, apple or apricot pie filling
    8 ounces cream cheese
    1/4 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons flour
    2 egg yolks
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 dried bean (to bake in the cake as per tradition)
    Colored sugars or confectioner's sugar and food coloring
    Remove dough from refrigerator and with well-floured hands, while it's firm and cold, shape it into a long sausage shape. Using a floured roller on a floured surface, roll out the dough into a 30-by-9-inch rectangle as thin as pie crust. Let dough rest.

    If necessary, drain extra juice from pie filling. Mix the cream cheese with the sugar, flour, egg yolks and vanilla. Spoon an inch-wide strip of fruit filling the length of the dough, about 3 inches from one edge. Spoon the cream cheese mixture alongside the fruit, about 3 inches from the other edge. Brush both sides of dough with egg wash. Insert the bean.

    Fold one edge of dough over the cream cheese and fruit, then fold the other edge over. Gently place one end of the filled roll onto a greased pizza pan or large cookie sheet. Ease the rest of the roll onto the pan, joining the ends to form a circle or oval. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes. Brush again with egg wash and cut deep vents into the cake. Sprinkle with colored sugars if desired.

    Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until cake is well risen and golden. Cool before icing with confectioner's sugar mixed with enough water to make a spreadable paste and tinted purple, green and gold. Make one cake that serves 10 to 12 people.
    If using a plastic baby instead of the bean, insert it into the bottom of the cake after it is cooked.
  • King Cake (using your bread machine)

    For bread machine:

    1/2 cup warm water,110 to 115 degrees
    1/2 cup warm milk
    2 tsp salt
    1/2 cup sugar
    1 tsp nutmeg
    1 tsp lemon zest
    1/2 cup oil
    5 egg yolks
    3 1/2 flour unsifted white flour
    2 pkgs active dry yeast OR approx 1 rounded dry tbsp bulk dry yeast

    After kneading:

    1 tsp cinnamon (before twisting into circle)
    1 egg slightly beaten with 1 tbsp milk

    one 1" plastic baby doll ( use after baking)

    Put ingredients in your bread machine according to manufacturer instructions, with the dry yeast on the very top. Set the bread machine for the dough only cycle for 11/2 hours or till dough reaches the top of the pan.

    Turn dough out onto floured breadboard. If too sticky, knead in up to 1 cup flour a little at a time. Form dough into cylinder and sprinkle cinnamon on top. Twist into a circle on a greased baking sheet, pinching the ends together to complete the circle.

    Brush top and sides of cake with egg wash. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to20 minutes. Hide the plastic baby in the cake while the cake is still warm. After cake is completely cool, ice and decorate the top with the lemon icing and the colored sugar in alternating bands of purple, green and gold. It is easiest to ice a small section, sprinkle with the colored sugar, then ice the next section, otherwise the icing hardens before the sugar can stick.

    Colored Sugars

    Green, purple, & yellow paste
    12 tablespoons sugar

    Squeeze a dot of green paste in palm of hand. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar over the paste and rub together quickly. Place this mixture on wax paper and wash hands to remove color. Repeat process for other 2 colors. Place aside.
    You may be able to find the colored sugar already i the colors needed where cake supplies are sold.


    3 cups confectioners sugar
    1/4 cup lemon juice
    3 to 6 tbsp water

    Combine sugar, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons water till smooth. If icing is too stiff, add more water till spreadable. Spread icing over top of cake. Immediately sprinkle the colored sugars in individual rows consisting of about 2 rows of green, purple and yellow.
  • yummy...thanks gang! I am gonna probabally try the King cake and possibly the creole jambalaya!
  • Here's an easy King Cake that I've made for FC.
    Kid's Recipes | Mardi Gras | King Cake

  • Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce

    4 cups cubed day-old French bread
    1/4 cup pecan pieces
    2 large eggs
    3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp packed dark brown sugar
    2 cups evaporated fat-free milk
    1 tbsp vanilla extract
    1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
    1/2 cup raisins
    1 tbsp sugar, divided
    1 tbsp butter

    Bourbon Sauce

    1/3 cup evaporated fat-free milk
    1/4 cup sugar
    3 tbsp bourbon
    2 tbsp nonfat plain yogurt

    To make Bread Pudding: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake about 10 minutes, stirring twice or till lightly toasted. Meanwhile, spread pecans in a pie plate and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or till fragrant. Let cool and chop coarsely. Whisk together eggs and brown sugar in a large bowl. Blend in evaporated milk, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir in the toasted bread, pecans and raisins. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour. Lightly coat a shallow 2 qt baking dish with canola oil or nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle with 1/2 tablespoon of the sugar. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Skim off froth and cook till it begins to turn light nutty brown, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. (Be careful not to burn the butter.) Transfer to a small bowl and let cool. Pour the bread mixture into the prepared baking dish. Drizzle browned butter over the top and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon sugar. Bake the pudding for 40 minutes or till firm in the center. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees and bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer, or until the top is brown and puffed.

    To make Bourbon Sauce: Place a deep mixing bowl, beaters and evaporated skim milk in the freezer to chill for 20 minutes. Beat evaporated milk in the chilled bowl, using an electric mixer for 1 to 2 minutes,or till it is the consistency of whipped cream. Gradually add sugar, bourbon and yogurt and beat for several minutes longer, or until thickened. Serve over warm bread pudding.

    Per serving : 334 Calories; 6 g Fat; 2 g Sat; 2 g Mono; 57 mg Cholesterol; 59 g Carbohydrates; 9 g Protein; 1 g Fiber; 239 mg Sodium; 466 mg Potassium
    4 Carbohydrate Serving
  • This is a recipe from a New Orleans Cooking School. On a strech of the oldest street in New Orleans between the French Quarter and the New Orleans Museum of art is a 1798 West Indies Creole style plantation home on two acres. This is now a landmark Bed & Breakfast called The House on Bayou Road that houses the New Orleans Cooking Experience. Classes begin at $150 for a single session. Here is one of their recipes they are sharing.

    Crayfish Etouffee

    2 pounds fresh or frozen crayfish tails, peeled and cooked
    1 cups butter
    1 clove garlic, minced
    2 bay leaves
    1 tsp dried thyme, crushed
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp EACH cayenne pepper and ground black pepper
    1 tbsp tomato paste
    1 cup thinly sliced green onions
    Bottled hot sauce
    salt, cayenne pepper and ground black pepper to taste
    4 1/2 cups hot cooked rice

    Thaw crayfish if frozen. Remove crayfish from bags and set aside. Add 1 tbsp water to each bag; seal and shake. Reserve water from bags. In skillet melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic, bay leaves, thyme, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp EACH cayenne pepper and black pepper. Cook and stir 1 minute. Whisk in tomato paster and flavored water from bags. Add green onoin; cook about 1 minute or just till wilted. Stir in crayfish. Simmer covered 5 minutes or till heated through. Season to taste with hot sauce and additional salt, cayenne pepper, and ground black pepper. Serve over hot cooked rice.