Monthly Archives: July 2009

Cream Puffs – A guilty pleasure

cream puffsI love cream puffs and they are my guilty pleasure.  This is a treat and so simple to make.  You don’t need to go to the bakery.  They are refreshing to eat on a summer afternoon – something about that cream filling!

1 cup hot water

1/2 cup butter

1 cup sifted all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 eggs, unbeaten

Put water in sauce pan; bring to a boil.  Add butter, stir until melted.  Add flour and salt all at once, stirring vigorously.Cook, stirring constantly until mixture leaves sides of pan and resembles mashed potatoes. Remove from heat and cool for 1 minute.

Add eggs, unbeaten, 1 at a time, beating with a spoon after each addition until smooth. 

Drop heaping tablespoons of mixture 2 inches apart on greased cookie sheet.  Shape with wet spoon into rounds with a peak in the center.

Bake 10 minutes in hot oven 450 degrees, reduce to 400 degrees for 25 more minutes.

Cool, cut slit in the side of each puff and fill with Vanilla Cream Filling or sweetened whip cream.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar.  Makes 20 puffs

Vanilla Cream Filling

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch (If you don’t have cornstarch: 1 tablespoon cornstarch = 2 tablespoons flour)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup cream, half & half or heavy whipping cream

4 egg yolks, slightly beaten

2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, and mill in a double boiler. (Or a bowl set on top of a sauce pan of boiling water.)  Bring to a boil over direct heat, stirring constantly, boil 1 minute, remove from heat.

Add 3 tablspoons of mixture to egg yolks, blend, and add this mixture to remaining hot filling. 

Cook again over boiling water, stirring constantly until thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add vanilla.  Chill until set.

If you want chocolate cream filling:  Use 2 teaspoons cornstarch instead of 1 tablespoon, add 1/4 cup additional sugar and 2 squares grated unsweetened chocolate.  Chill until set.


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Filed under Breads, Cakes, Cookies, Dessert

Shrimp Destin – A Sunday evening tradition

shrimp destinSunday evenings are a special time in our home.  It’s a time when all the family gathers, discusses their plans for the following week and just catch up with each other.  This dish allows you the extra time to spend with the family.  It’s simple, delicious, and easy clean up.  

Serves 4 -5

2 lb. Large Shrimp

2 French rolls, split lengthwise, toasted, and kind of flattened out

1 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley

1 teaspoon dill

1/8 teaspoon ground pepper

1/8 teaspoon salt

cajun seasoning – optional

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon white wine

1 stick butter (you can use 1/2 stick butter and 1/4 cup olive oil)

2 tablespoons butter (add just before removing dish from fire)

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/4 cup chopped green onions

Peel and devein shrimp.  Saute green onions and garlic in butter (minus 2 tablespoons) until onions are tender.  Add shrimp, wine, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until shrimp are pink.  Add dill, parsley and 2 tablespoons butter.  If you want a little more punch, you can add some cajun seasoning.  Spoon shrimp mixture over toasted french roll and serve immediately.  May also be spooned over rice.

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Filed under Fish / Seafood, Louisiana / Cajun

Mamaw McGee’s DoDo Balls – aka Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

dodo ballsI’m sure you remember these cookies from your childhood.  Mamaw McGee, Sue Patrick Richard’s grandmother, taught me how to make DoDo Balls in the 4th grade and I have never forgotten the recipe. Sue says I have this recipe down to a ‘fine art’. Anyone who has been to my home has eaten DoDo Balls. This is a family tradition!  Yes, we really call them DoDo Balls – the humor of a 4th grader – what can I say?


2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
3 tablespoons cocoa, not heaping
1 stick of butter

Cook above ingredients in heavy sauce pan over medium heat. Bring to low boil for 1 and 1/2 minutes. Don’t start your time until mixture is boiling and be careful not to scorch! The cookies should be moist, not hard or dry.  Remove from heat, and add:

1/2 cup peanut butter (I put much more peanut butter-close to 1 cup),
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 heaping cups oatmeal (the kind that cooks in 1 minute).

Mix well and drop onto wax paper. I use a melon scoop and make small size drop cookies.


Filed under Cookies

Crawfish Étouffée – The perfect comfort food!

crawfish-etouffeeThis recipe is better made the day before or early in the morning. I usually double the recipe because our children like to share with their friends.  We make this so often, I don’t have to look at the recipe any longer; I know it by heart!

The usual staple of an étouffée is seafood i.e. crawfish, shrimp, or crabmeat.

The base of an étouffée is a dark brown roux. It is usually seasoned with onions, green bell pepper and celery (a.k.a. the holy trinity), cayenne pepper, garlic, and salt and has a thicker consistency than gumbo. There is typically no tomato in this dish. Most purists believe that once tomatoes are added, the dish ceases to be a true étouffée, and instead becomes a stew or a creole dish.

2 sticks butter
1/4 cup flour
1 cup chopped green onions
1 cup chopped yellow onions
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon Worcestershire
Tabasco to taste
2 cups water
2 pounds crawfish tails (sold in the freezer section in 1 pound bags)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1/4 cup minced parsley, fresh

Make a walnut-colored roux with 1 stick butter and flour. Add green onions, yellow onions, garlic, green pepper, celery, bay leaf, thyme, basil, and the remaining butter. Saute, uncovered, over medium heat for 30 minutes. Add white pepper, salt, Worcestershire, Tabasco, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer slowly, uncovered, for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Turn off fire. Add crawfish tails (if frozen, do not thaw), lemon juice, lemon rind, and parsley. Cover and refrigerate. Remove from the refrigerator 1 hour before serving. Heat quickly, without boiling, and serve immediately over steamed rice.

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Filed under Celebration, Chicken, Entree, Fish / Seafood, Holiday, Louisiana / Cajun, rice

Five Flavor Cake

mom and dadIf you ever dropped by my mother’s home, then you probably have had this cake. Margaret always had hot coffee and some type of homemade treat for anyone visiting. Her door was always open. I remember my cousin, Mary Jo, would drop by on Wednesdays, her sisters on Tuesday, and Thursdays, and her best friend, Myrtis, on Mondays. The days and the visitors would vary from time to time, but the hot coffee and a homemade treat were always the same.


My Parents: Margaret and Pleasant Adley

Sweet note from Mom’s best friend, Myrtis. 

“Patti, I love your blogs, especially about food. Margaret must be looking down from heaven and loving that you are so much like her. I was always a little envious of her natural ability to be sweet and loving to everyone, and to make EVERYONE feel so at ease at her house. Love you so much, Myrtis”

Five Flavor Cake
2 sticks butter
1/4 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
5 eggs, well beaten
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon coconut flavoring
1 teaspoon rum extract
1 teaspoon butter flavoring
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream butter, shortening, and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs that have been beaten and are lemon colored. Combine flour and baking powder and add to creamed mixture alternately with milk. Stir in flavorings. Spoon mixture into prepared 10″ Bundt pan (or 12 cup pan).

Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 30 minutes. DO NOT OVER BAKE. Cool pan exactly 10 minutes before removing from pan.

1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. each coconut, rum, butter, lemon, vanilla, and almond extracts.
Combine ingredients in heavy saucepan. Bring to boil, stir until sugar is melted.
Pour 1/2 of the glaze on to cake while it is in the Bundt pan cooling and the other half after the take the cake out.


Filed under Cakes, Dessert

Yia Yia’s Mouth Watering Crawfish Pasta

crawfish-pastaThis is a secret family recipe that is frequently requested for birthday dinners and special occasions. Delicious!  You may use shrimp or chicken instead of crawfish and I usually double this recipe.



8oz. Linguini

1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup flour

Make a light roux with the butter and flour.

Add: 1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced – If you double the recipe, don’t double the garlic.
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
Cook in the roux for 5 minutes.

Add:1 chicken bullion cube or 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 pint whipping cream (I know what you are thinking; whipping cream is so fattening! You can play with something less fattening, if you want. If you do use something less creamy and crawfish, you may want to add a little squirt of lemon to the dish.)
1 – 2 lbs. crawfish tails, shrimp, or chicken
1 can Rotel tomatoes, drained
1 tablespoon creole seasoning
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
Tabasco to taste
Cook for approximately 10 minutes until thick. If mixture gets too thick, thin out with pasta water.

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Filed under Celebration, Chicken, Entree, Fish / Seafood, Holiday, Louisiana / Cajun, Pasta

Chocolate Cherry Cake – aka ‘The Funeral Cake’

My nephew, Patrick Richard, brought this recipe home to his mother when he was in middle school. (He is now 27.) When he brought the recipe home, it was in his pocket, folded into a little bitty square.  He asked his mother to make it saying “This is the best cake I have ever eaten; it tastes like a chocolate covered cherry!”

Over the years we have started calling this cake The Funeral Cake because it is so easy to make with only a few ingredients needed.  Who doesn’t have the below ingredients in their pantry at all times?

1 box Chocolate Cake Mix (choose any flavor chocolate you like, Butter Fudge, Devil’s Food, etc.)
1 can Cherry Pie Filling
2 eggs slightly beaten
1 teaspoon almond extract
Mix everything together in 1 bowl until thoroughly blended. Pour into a greased and floured 9X13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before adding the icing.

5 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup Carnation evaporated milk
1 cup granulated sugar
While the cake is cooling, over medium heat, bring the butter, milk, and sugar to a boil. Boil for 1 minute. Remove from the fire and add 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Stir until it cools and thickens. Pour over warm cake.

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Filed under Cakes, Celebration, Dessert