Dizzy Pig is back at it again adding to their “-ish” rubs with the new release Bayouish. Once again, they’ve sent me a sample before they release it to try out. I honestly don’t know why they choose to include me on their little list of people who get to sample it first, but I am glad they did.
Along with a small sample, they sent a little note.
Enough of all that. Time to get cooking.
about a pound of fish fillets, red snapper, red fish, catfish or trout (or even chicken or steak)
1 stick of unsalted butter, melted
Dizzy Pig’s Bayouish Seasoning (or other blackened seasoning)
lemon wedges for garnish (optional)
Preheat your grill to hot. We had the Big Green Egg going steady at 650F. Allow your cast iron skillet to come up to heat with your grill.
Brush both sides of your fish with melted butter and apply Bayouish liberally. Reserve remaining butter.
After allowing your skillet to get “screaming” hot, carefully pour in a tbsp or so of butter and put the fish flesh side down.
After two minutes, flip the fish and pour in another tbsp of butter and drizzle some on top of the fish. Cook for another two minutes or until fish is about 130F.
Remove fish from skillet, squeeze lemon juice on top and enjoy.
Now why would you want to blacken your fish outside? Couldn’t you just do it inside? Check that above pic. See all that smoke? Can you imagine how smoky your house would be after that? This dish is better prepared outside so you don’t smoke out all your family, friends and/or pets.
Sometimes, I don’t know what I would do without Mrs. G. She found a recipe somewhere and whipped up some dirty rice to go along with the fish. Not sure what all went into it except hot breakfast sausage, chicken livers (we had some left over from the risotto), celery and rice. Whatever it was, it was tasty.
The red snapper was pretty darn tasty and I can see us using Dizzy Pig’s Bayouish often once they officially release it. It had a nice flavor and didn’t overpower the fish at all. If anything, Mrs. G and I both wish it had a bit more spice to it. I understand when marketing to the masses, you have to please a wide range of palettes, but the heat was just lacking in our humble opinions. Nothing a little hot sauce won’t fix. Or mixing in a little cayenne to the rub. Otherwise, the flavors were pretty well balanced. If you like really spicy food, this might not be the rub for you, but if you are addicted to blackened fish, you should give it a try.
The other week a member on the Egghead Forum who goes by the handle R2Egg2Q posted up a picture of some lamb chops that he had cooked and they looked amazing. I don’t have much experience cooking lamb. I suppose it might be partly that I did not grow up eating it. And partly because of the price tag, I’ve been afraid of messing it up. R2Egg2Q’s lamb looked so good, though, and everybody said it cooks up just like a small steak, so I figured I’d give it a shot using his recipe.
Don’t those look pretty? I picked them up at Central Market and they were about 2 -2.5″ thick. Not being a lamb expert, I wasn’t sure how many to get and erred on the safe side by getting six (which turns out to be way too many for 2 people BTW). Total cost came out to about $33. Gee…I hope I don’t screw this one up.
Herb and Garlic Lamb Loin Chops
6 lamb loin chops
1 Tbsp thyme , chopped fine
1 Tbsp oregano, chopped fine
1 Tbsp rosemary, chopped fine
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup EVOO
optional – Dizzy Pig Red Eye Express or other coffee flavored bbq rub
Mix the herbs, garlic, lemon zest, salt and pepper and EVOO together in a small bowl.
Place the lamb chops in a dish just large enough to hold them. Brush the marinade on both sides and allow to sit for at least 2 hours.
Set up your grill for a direct cook and preheat to 450F.
Lightly dust the lamb chops with Red Eye Express (or other coffee flavored BBQ rub) on one side. Place dusted side face down on grill and lightly dust the other side.
Grill 4-5 minutes per side or until internal temp reaches 130-135.
Remove from grill, loosely tent with foil and allow 10 minutes to rest before serving.
I really don’t know why I was worried. If you think about it, they are just like really, really tiny t-bones or porterhouse steaks. Or even pork loin chops. Same part of the animal, just smaller.
Mrs. G whipped up the Winter Mushroom Risotto that can be found in the February 20014 issue of Southern Living. Not a real hard recipe, but it is time consuming as it takes constant stirring for 30-35 minutes.
The lamb loin chops were divine. Herbaceous, if you will with just the right notes of citrus in the background and a hint of the coffee flavored rub. This will be my go-to recipe for lamb chops from now on. The lamb really paired well with the risotto, too. It was a perfect Valentine’s Dinner. Oh? Did I not mention that? Yes, this was how we celebrated Valentine’s Day rather than face the mad hordes that descended on all the restaurants last Friday. Who needs that hassle? We just took it easy, had a nice meal at home and then…
What I would do differently? Not much. I think the only thing I would change would be to cook them on a bigger grill. Cooking them on the Mini was just pushing it. Really crowded grate and they were hard to flip and maneuver. That much meat really drops the temp of the grill as well. Yeah, I’d definitely do them on the Large next time and that’s about the only change I would make.
I think I have conquered my fear of lamb. It’s just another hunk o’ meat, although a little more expensive than beef. But if you treat it just like any other steak and monitor the internal temp, you will be fine. No need to worry at all. Next, I want to tackle a rack of lamb…
The other day, the weather was beautiful here in the DFW. I figured I’d sit on the patio with the dogs and enjoy the weather with a cold one. But what beer to get? The limited time old school can of Millet Lite caught my eye. Does the beer taste any different? Nah, but it does have nostalgia. WHY NOT??
A burger sounded good after a few beers. I’ve been losing some weight so I can afford it. Two quarter pound patties, Chihuahua cheese and two thick slices of bacon. Healthy? No! Tasty? Yes! WHY NOT??
P.S. I didn’t eat it all and I do plan on taking the dogs for a walk today after work. 😉
Back to the other day when I was wandering around aimlesslyshopping at Sprouts and I spotted that beautiful okra. I needed something to go with the fried okra that I thought I was going to make. Fish is always a healthy choice and I figured I would make some blackened salmon or maybe catfish. When I got to the fish counter, the trout jumped out at me. It looked fresher and while a bit more than the catfish, it was cheaper than the salmon. Plus we like trout.
My original thought was to do our Grilled Blackened Trout. We don’t like to do the traditional method of blackening inside our house. It get the house smokey, which in turn sets off the smoke alarm, which then freaks our dogs out causing them to either start barking or go into hiding. Not to mention makes the house smell. But with temperatures in the 20’s and me all nice and cozy in our warm house, lighting the Egg just did not seem to be in my future. So it was off to go scour the old interweb and see what kind of easy recipe I could find to go with our stewed okra and tomatoes.
In a medium bowl, combine lemon juice, Creole seasoning, garlic, parsley, green onions and oregano. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Line a cookie sheet with foil and then place a wire rack on top. Spray the wire rack with PAM. Arrange the fillets on top and then brush with vinaigrette.
Broil 5-6 inches from heat until just cooked through, about 5 minutes or until temperature reaches 135F.
Serve with lemon wedges.
We really enjoyed this simple method for trout. Easy ingredients and total time from start to finish was under 10 minutes. By lifting the trout off the baking sheet and onto a wire rack, it allows the skin to crisp up a bit which is a plus in my book. And the trout paired really well with the stewed okra and tomatoes. I didn’t think that this recipe was going to be worthy of a post so I really didn’t work hard at the photos, but I was pleasantly surprised. I just wish I had taken better photos now. Oh well.
And please, please if you are going to eat seafood, don’t reach for that bottle of tartar sauce. Do yourself a favor and quickly whisk up a batch. It really does make a difference and takes very little effort on your part. This is one we really enjoy: Home Made Horseradish and Tarragon Tartar Sauce
The other day I was walking through my local Sprouts and I spotted some beautiful okra sitting in a large barrel. For those that don’t have one in their area, Sprouts touts themselves as:
“Sprouts is a neighborhood grocery store with the feel of an old-fashioned farmers market. Our bright, friendly stores are filled with everyday staples and specialty items at a great value. You’ll find mountains of fresh fruits and vegetables, barrels of wholesome grains, nuts and sweets, full-service deli, meat and seafood counters—complete with homemade burgers and sausages. Roam around our spacious aisles and you’ll find fresh baked goods, eclectic beer and wine, gourmet cheese, sensibly-priced vitamins and supplements, and thousands of natural, organic and gluten-free groceries.”
It’s a great place to pick up fresh fruits and vegetables, grass fed beef and exotic meats such as bison, elk and others. And if you are into it, they have all kinds of health nut things. Vitamins and organic this and that and gluten free everything. Great stuff if you are into it, but I mainly go to get fresh fruits and veggies.
Like I was saying, I spotted some beautiful okra and I grabbed it thinking only of making fried okra. Then I got to thinking that fried was probably not the healthiest choice I could make and instead decided stewed okra and tomatoes would be much healthier and I’m glad I did. I knew that Mrs. G liked it. What I didn’t know was that it is one of her favorite dishes. Score some extra bonus points for me. 🙂
1 lb fresh okra, stems and tips removed and sliced (frozen is ok if that is all you can find)
2 slices of thick bacon
1 large onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced (I used red as Sprouts did not have green and I don’t like green anyway)
2 cloves of garlic, diced
1 14.5 can diced tomatoes with juices (basil, garlic and oregano preferably)
8 oz tomato sauce
1 tsp creole seasoning, such as Tony Chachere’s
salt and pepper to taste
optional 1 tsp of sugar (to cut the acidity if desired)
In a large saute pan, cook the two slices of bacon. When done, remove bacon and set aside. Coarsely chop when cool.
Sautee the onion and bell pepper over medium heat in the reserved bacon grease until tender (add extra oil if needed). Once tender, add the garlic and sautee for an additional minute of two, making sure not to brown the garlic.
Add the remaining ingredients including the chopped bacon, turn the stove down to a low simmer and cover the pan. Cook for about 30 minutes or until okra has reached your preferred texture.
*Note – this dish is even better if made the day before or if allowed to set for a few hours after cooking to allow the flavors to develop and marry.
Even though I was craving fried okra when I was at the store, I’m glad I went the healthier route. This dish is chock-full of flavors. A little tart, a little sweet, a little heat and just the right amount of acidity. It doesn’t look very pretty on a plate, but don’t let its looks fool you. Mrs. G declared the dish a winner, although she said I overcooked the bacon. She thinks I shouldn’t have gotten it as crispy as I did.
As for the fish, we’ll get to that tomorrow. Or the next day. In the meantime, you can find the recipe for our home made Horseradish and Tarragon Tartar Sauce HERE. The only changes we’ve made is to use yellow onion instead of the red onion. The red onion tends to turn the sauce pink if allowed to sit to long.