Tag Archives: cajun food

Chopped Challenge Thursday: Boudain, Wasabi, Candy Canes and Shrimp

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This weeks “Chopped Challenge Thursday” kicked 2013 off with a real bang!

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The combination of Boudain (I’ll explain later!), Wasabi, Candy Canes and Shrimp, gave my culinary mind a run for its money, but I came up with something pretty delicious and super spicy to kick off the new year!

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After googling “Boudain” I found out that it is a Cajun sausage typically made of rice, spices and pork, but can also be made with crawfish or shrimp instead of pork.  I then yelped “where to buy Boudain” and found my newest adventure.

This morning I headed to east San Diego to “Mardi Gras Cafe and Cajun Market” to purchase the now infamous Boudain.

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The owners were an extremely sweet couple and very helpful.  I purchased my Boudain, then they proceeded to show me some of their favorite sauces (of the over 100 they had in stock!)

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I can’t wait to grab a couple of bottles of these before my annual Super Bowl Party!

In addition to a variety of Boudain sausages and walls of hot sauce options, they also sell alligator meat and offer a full restaurant menu. I can’t wait to go back and try their Louisiana home cooking!

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Now back to that Chopped Challenge! I decided to combine Japanese and Cajun flavors into a Jambalaya fusion recipe topped with a Sweet and Spicy Wasabi Mayonnaise made with crushed Candy Canes! The result was a spicy, peppery, unique and flavorful dish!

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Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion (diced)
  • 1 jalapeno (diced)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 12 oz boudain sausage
  • 1 cup mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1/2 cup cucumber (diced)
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1/2 tsp wasabi
  • 1 tsp sriracha
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 candy cane
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ginger (grated)
  • 1/2 cup wasabi mayonnaise
  • 8-10 large shrimp
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds

(Just ignore any of the other ingredients that snuck into the picture above, this was an experimental recipe and not all of the ingredients made the cut 😉 )

Begin preparing the dish by heating the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the onion and jalapeño to the heated oil and sauté for 5 minutes.  Next, add the garlic.  Sauté for an additional minute then remove the boudain from its casing and crumble into the pan.

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Next, add the mushrooms and cucumber.

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Then add the rice, sriracha and wasabi.

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Finally, add the beef stock and stir all of the ingredients together.

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Cover with a lid and allow to simmer for 45 minutes.

In the meantime, prepare the Sweet and Spicy Wasabi Mayonnaise to top the jambalaya.  I’m not going to lie to you all, it wasn’t bad, but the jambalaya definitely doesn’t need it.

Pretty much unless you have a bunch of candy canes on hand and some extra wasabi mayonnaise lying around that you feel like experimenting with, this step can be skipped 🙂

If so desired, break a candy cane into a small food processor, then add the ginger and wasabi mayonnaise and mix well.

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Now, back to the jambalaya.  After the dish has simmered covered for 45 minutes, most of the liquid should be gone from the pan and the rice should be tender, now add the shrimp to the pan and continue simmering for an additional 5-10 minutes.

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Remove from the pan and top with the sesame seeds and a little drizzle of the Sweet and Spicy Wasabi Mayonnaise.

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I also sprinkled a little fresh parsley on top to add some color and served the dish with a couple of lemon wedges to mellow out the super spiciness of the wasabi, sriracha and hot boudain!

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This was the perfect warm dish on a cool San Diego winter day!

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After all my hard work on this very unique Chopped Challenge dish, I couldn’t wait to dig in!

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♣ Vegetarian Option: Replace the shrimp and boudain with extra rice, mushrooms and cucumbers for a vegetarian alternative.

♦ Gluten Free Option: This recipe is gluten-free (just make sure the beef stock you use is gluten-free!)

Shrimp and Sausage Cajun Pasta

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I was inspired to create this recipe when I made the ultimate kitchen appliance purchase, a pasta machine!  What oh what would I make first with this amazing piece of machinery?  When I saw the Cajun Style Andouille Sausage in the fridge, I knew I had to make a Cajun pasta dish!

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No Cajun pasta dish is complete without a little shrimp, so I cooked up the sausage and shrimp in a little white wine and Cajun seasoning, then threw it on top of my homemade fettuccine tossed in a Cajun alfredo sauce!  The result was amazing, flavorful and just a tad on the spicy side!

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp thyme leaves
  • ¾ cup white wine
  • 1 ½ cups parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1 green bell pepper (chopped)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 12 shrimp (peeled and deveined)
  • 3 links Cajun sausage (sliced)
  • 2 tbsp green onions (chopped)
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 1 lb fresh (or purchased) fettuccine pasta

Begin preparing the Cajun alfredo sauce by adding the cream to a saucepan over medium heat. Allow to cook for  2-3 minutes, then add the butter.  Once the butter has melted add half of the red pepper flakes, black pepper, salt, oregano, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper and thyme.

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Mix well then add ½ cup of white wine and stir to combine.  Next, mix in the parmesan cheese.

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Allow the sauce to simmer over low heat while you prepare the sausage and shrimp.

Begin by warming the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Next, add the bell pepper and onions.  Cook for 5 minutes then add the minced garlic and the other half of the black pepper, salt, oregano, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper and thyme.

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Next, add the sausage and ¼ cup white wine.

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Allow to simmer for 2-3 minutes, then add the shrimp.

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Cook for 3-4 minutes or until shrimp is pink. At the same time boil the water and cook the fettuccine pasta, then place the shrimp and sausage on top of the fettuccine tossed in the Cajun alfredo sauce. Garnish with green onions and parsley.

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So much flavor packed into this one dish!

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I love the spiciness of the sausage and seasonings mixed with the freshness of the shrimp and the creaminess of the alfredo sauce!

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Not to mention that homemade pasta, AMAZING!!

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Now it’s time… time to dig in!

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♣ Vegetarian Option: Omit the shrimp and sausage, and double up on the vegetables to make this dish vegetarian.

♦ Gluten Free Option: Substitute the fettuccine with a gluten-free pasta.