Mike

Shish Kabobs with Blue Cheese and Raspberry Vinaigrette Sauce

One night last week I woke up at 3am and could not fall back asleep.  So I thought about some possible new dishes. This is what I came up with and I tried it out for the Fourth of July.  Maybe you could say I dreamed it up.  It involves shish kabobs, a marinade, blue cheese and raspberry vinaigrette sauce.  I tried it with pork and beef. It came out well enough for me to pass it on. Chicken would work also, but I would not add meat tenderizer to the marinade.

Ingredients:

1 pound beef top sirloin cut into 1 inch chunks  (I wanted boneless country-style beef ribs, but they were sold out)
1 pound of boneless country-style pork ribs
1 cup blue cheese crumbled
1 cup of raspberry vinaigrette
bamboo skewers (I used 6 for the meat, but always soak more than I need. Let the ones not used dry save for next time.)

Marinade:

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup sesame oil
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp creole seasoning
1 tsp meat tenderizer

Method:
Combine all the marinade ingredients and mix well. Place the meat in two separate gallon size ziplock bags. Pour equal parts of the marinade in each bag. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours.  Over-nite would be better.

Two hours before cooking soak the skewers in water to keep them from burning.

30 minutes before cooking time (or while the charcoal is heating up) pour one cup of the raspberry vinaigrette in a small sauce pan. Bring to a slow boil to reduce it and allow to thicken up. Take the meat out of refrigerator and skewer. I kept the meat together and put veggies on other skewers. I didn’t want the blue cheese and sauce on the veggies. You might like it that way. I see no reason you could not mix it all up.

When the grill is ready, place the kabobs on the grill over the heat and start cooking. (I don’t like to crowd my grill. I like to see the glowing coals or gas flames. This allows sufficient heat to pass upwards between the meat.) When the meat is done to your liking push the skewers close together. Now sprinkle the blue cheese over the meat and allow it to slightly melt. Carefully remove the meat and drizzle with the raspberry vinaigrette.

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Fried Green Tomatoes

No, I am not speaking of the movie back in the early 1990’s. There is such a thing as fried green tomatoes. Un-ripened green tomatoes work best for this recipe because they have less juice and are firmer than a ripe tomato. This is so easy to make, that I am putting it into my Easy Summer Series category.  

Last weekend I was frying up some fish. My garden has an overabundance of tomatoes now, so I decided to pick a few and fry them up. I already had everything I needed, hot grease, fish fry mix and hungry mouths. The only thing I added was a milk and egg mixture to  bind the mix to the tomatoes. I use dry mix for my fish. The tomatoes I used for this recipe were my Creole and Super Steak varieties. That doesn’t really matter, any green tomato will do especially since they have not reached their full flavor at this point.

Slice the tomatoes into 1/4 inch slices. Season with your favorite seasoning blend or my Creole Seasoning.

One at a time, mix each tomato into a bowl of dry fish fry mix, then dip into the milk egg mixture, and back into the dry mix.

Once all the tomato slices are battered, deep fry in 350 degree oil. Cook until they float. Also, do not crowd. Give them room to swim. They should be golden brown. (You can also pan fry in a skillet with 1/2 inch of oil and flip them once.)

My dipping sauce is good with the fried green tomatoes.


Dipping Sauce

There is a great fast food chain that started in Baton Rouge called Raising Cane’s. Their specialty and only item is fried chicken strips.  Their best kept secret is their dipping sauce. Although I have not been able to duplicate their recipe, here is my version. I find it goes really well with chicken strips, fried green tomatoes and fried alligator. 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1/4 ketchup
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp Creole seasoning
  • ½ tsp fresh cracked pepper

Method

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Whisk it well it to make sure everything is blended together. Cover and refrigerate for several hours. This sauce develops it’s best taste when the ingredients have had some time swap flavors with each other in the refrigerator.