05 February 2010

9 Easy Marti Gras and Super Bowl Eats

Photo of Bourbon Street at night in the French Quarter, New Orleans, Louisiana by Lyndi & Jason @ flickr

From Denny: New Orleans and all of Louisiana is heating up for this weekend's Super Bowl to watch the Saints play in Miami. People are so excited you would think it's already Marti Gras season a bit early! :)

Featured today are favorite Cajun recipes for easiest versions of gumbo and jambalaya and Creole potato salad - along with appetizers like chicken wings, a warm dip for your chips, puff pastry appetizers, little pizzas and grilled shrimp with three sauces.

Zatarain's company from New Orleans packages a lot of quick dry spice mixes to make your own Jambalaya, Red Beans and Rice, Seafood Gumbo and more Cajun dishes without the long wait. We all enjoy those food shortcuts and this century old New Orleans company is a well loved company here. Did I mention their products also taste good?

Zatarain's also put out a fun pdf file Party Guide to Marti Gras and a few simple craft projects that are kid friendly:

* Want to print out your own Marti Gras mask fun? Zatarain's has a fun one for kids, go here.

* Marti Gras fun trivia cards to print out, go here.

* Print out your own fun float for the parade, go here.

* Download Zatarain's free Party Guide to Marti Gras, go here.


Carnival Jambalaya
Creole Gumbo
Creole Mustard Potato Salad
Oysters Rockefeller Pizza
Sweet & Spicy Chicken Wings
Shrimp Cocktail with Three Sauces
Baked Artichoke and Corn Dip
Nacho Cheese Bites
Pepperoni Bites

The Cajun version of cheering on the home team: GEAUX SAINTS!!!

Carnival Jambalaya

Throwing a party, but you're pressed for time, then this dish is for you. It's quick, easy and is sure to satisfy a variety of appetites.

From: Zatarain's

Makes: 12 (1-cup) servings

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes


5 cups water
1/4 cup oil (optional)
2 packages ZATARAIN'S® Jambalaya Mix
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 cup sliced green onions (optional)


1. Bring water and oil to boil in large saucepan. Stir in Rice Mixes, chicken and sausage; return to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 25 minutes or until rice is tender.

2. Remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with green onions before serving.

Nutritional Info per 1 serving

Calories: 305
Sodium: 965
Fat: 13
Carbohydrates: 30
Cholesterol: 41
Fiber: 1
Protein: 17

Creole Gumbo


Like a traditional gumbo, this one is prepared without rice. Instead, prepare Zatarain's® Long Grain Parboiled Rice to serve with the gumbo.

Makes: 8 (1-cup) servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour


6 cups water
1 package ZATARAIN'S® Gumbo Base
2 tablespoons oil
2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 pound smoked sausage, cut into 1-inch cubes
ZATARAIN'S® Gumbo Filé (optional)


1. Bring water, Gumbo Base and oil to boil in large sauce pot on medium heat, stirring to dissolve any lumps. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Stir in shrimp and sausage; cover. Simmer additional 30 minutes.

3. Serve over rice and sprinkle with Gumbo Filé, if desired.

Nutritional Info per 1 serving

Calories: 350
Sodium: 1627
Fat: 22
Carbohydrates: 12
Cholesterol: 193
Fiber: 1
Protein: 26

Zatarain's® Creole Mustard Potato Salad


3 pounds red potatoes

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup ZATARAIN'S® Creole Mustard

1/3 cup sour cream

1/2 teaspoon ZATARAIN'S® Creole Seasoning

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes

1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon (optional)

2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onion


1. Cook potatoes in lightly salted water to cover in large sauce pot. Bring to boil on high heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 20 minutes or until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain, then quarter potatoes.

2. Mix mayonnaise, Creole Mustard, sour cream, Creole Seasoning and sugar in large bowl until well blended. Add warm potatoes; toss to coat well. Add tomatoes, bacon and green onion; toss lightly. Cover.

3. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or until ready to serve.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Refrigerate Time: 2 hours
Serves: Makes 12 (2/3-cup) servings.

Oysters Rockefeller Pizza

From: Food Focus Encore 1997 recipe booklet, “Louisiana Food Lover’s Holiday”

Makes: 12 small pizzas


1/2 lb. butter (2 sticks), plus 2 tbls. butter for sautéing oysters

4 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped (use the packaged pre-washed leaves)

2 cups parsley, finely chopped

1/2 cup finely chopped celery

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. white pepper

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 pint Pernod

24 to 36 oysters, lightly sautéed in 2 tbls. melted butter (can be cooked covered in a microwave for 1 minute)

Pizza dough, use a readymade dough to form into 12 small pizzas)

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese


1. Combine 2 sticks butter, spinach, parsley, celery, salt, peppers and Pernod in a bowl. Mix with a mixer on medium speed or by hand until well blended.

2. Transfer spinach mixture to a colander to drain off excess liquid. Let set for 30 minutes.

3. While spinach mixture is draining, partially cook pizza doughs, according the dough product’s directions. Cool for 15 minutes. Spread spinach mixture evenly over the 12 small pizzas. Top each pizza with 2 or 3 sautéed oysters.

4. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over each pizza. Bake pizzas on a cookie sheet or pizza stone in preheated 400-degree oven until topping is bubbly, about 5 minutes.

Sweet & Spicy Chicken Wings

Pace Kitchens

Makes: 24 pieces


12 chicken wings or 24 chicken drumettes
1 cup picante sauce
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp. ground ginger


1. Cut off wing tips and discard. Cut wings in half at joint. and put in foil-lined pan.

2. Stir picante sauce, honey and ginger in large bowl. Pour 1/3 cup of sauce over wings in pan. Toss wings with sauce.

3. Bake in the oven at 500 degrees on lowest oven rack for 35 minutes or until crispy and cooked through, turning over once halfway through baking.

4. Remove from oven and toss chicken wings with the remaining picante sauce. Serve.

Zatarain's also partners with Martha Stewart Living:

Shrimp Cocktail with Three Sauces

From: Martha Stewart Living, August 2009

Serves: 4



Coarse salt
1 pound (about 25) large shrimp, heads (optional) and shells on


2 small mangoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 lemon, peeled and rind finely chopped (2 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon rice vinegar (not seasoned)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pinch freshly ground white pepper
5 basil leaves, thinly sliced


1 cup chili sauce, such as Heinz
1/2 cup prepared horseradish
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper


3/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon spicy stone-ground mustard, preferably Creole (zatarains.com)
3 tablespoons finely chopped celery
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tablespoon finely chopped scallion
Freshly ground black pepper


Make the shrimp:
Prepare an ice-water bath. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Boil shrimp until opaque, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain, and transfer to ice-water bath to cool. Drain, and refrigerate.

Make the mango-basil sauce: Pulse mangoes, lemon rind and juice, vinegar, salt, and white pepper in a food processor until smooth. Fold in basil. (Sauce can be refrigerated for up to 1 day.)

Make the tomato-horseradish sauce: Stir together chili sauce, horseradish, and lemon juice. Season with black pepper. (Sauce can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.)

Make the remoulade: Whisk together mayonnaise, ketchup, and mustard. Stir in celery, parsley, and scallion. Season with black pepper. Serve immediately (or refrigerate for up to 1 day).

Place shell-on shrimp in a large bowl, or peel shrimp and arrange in small serving dishes. Serve with the 3 sauces on the side.

Baked Artichoke and Corn Dip

“Big Taste of Little Rock” cookbook published by The Junior League of Little Rock. The cookbook, a finalist in the Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards, can be ordered from the League’s Web site at http://www.jllr.org/.

Serves: 12


1 (14-oz.) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

1 (16-oz.) can corn kernels, drained

1/2 cup chopped green onions

1/2 to 1 (4-oz.) can chopped jalapeño chilies, drained (See Testing Note.)

1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 tsp. garlic salt

Corn chips (Frito Scoops work well)


1. Combine the artichoke hearts, corn, green onions, jalapeño chilies, Cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese in a bowl. Add the mayonnaise and garlic salt and mix well.

2. Spoon into a lightly greased baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

3. Serve with corn chips. You can substitute fresh garlic for the garlic salt and fresh jalapeño chilies for the canned chilies if preferred.

Nacho Cheese Bites

Pepperidge Farm

Makes: 20


Half of a (17.3-oz.) pkg. of Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed

1 egg

1 tbl. water

1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

1/4 cup Pace Chunky Salsa

5 pitted ripe olives, cut into quarters, optional

Chili powder


1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Beat egg and water in a small bowl with a fork or whisk. Stir together the cheese and salsa in a separate small bowl.

2. Unfold the pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. Roll the pastry sheet into a 15x12-inch rectangle. Cut into 20 (3-inch) squares.

3. Place about 1 tablespoon cheese mixture in the center of each pasty square. Top each with 1 olive piece, if desired. Brush the edges of the pastry squares with the egg mixture. Fold the pastry over the filling to form triangles.

4. Crimp the edges with a fork to seal.

5. Place the filled pastries onto baking sheets. Brush the pastries with the egg mixture and sprinkle with chili powder.

6. Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown. Remove the pastries from the baking sheets and let cool on wire racks for 10 minutes.

Pepperoni Bites


Makes: 40 appetizers


1 (3.5-oz.) pkg. sliced pepperoni, chopped

1 cup shredded Swiss cheese (or a blend of Italian cheeses if you can’t find the Swiss)

1 tomato, chopped into little pieces

1 small onion, finely chopped

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1 tsp. dried basil leaves

2 (10-oz.) pkgs. refrigerated flaky biscuits


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In bowl, combine pepperoni, cheese, tomato, onion, mayonnaise and basil.

2. Cut each biscuit in half. Place biscuit halves into greased miniature muffin cups, pressing gently to fit cups.

(Note: Miniature muffin tins come in several sizes. This recipe works with a muffin cup that is about 17/8 inches in diameter. You may have to adjust the size of the biscuit dough piece and amount of filling depending on the size of your muffin tin.)

3. Spoon 1 tablespoon (or the amount that fits in your muffin tin) of filling into each cup.

4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm.

*** ALSO: Be sure to check out what's happening over at Romancing The Chocolate blog for more great easy party recipes, 4 Fun Marti Gras and Super Bowl Recipes

*** THANKS for visiting, come back often, feel free to leave comments, a big shout out to current subscribers - and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email!
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