My first 4 dishes of summer

Laying here thinking about summer, and I can think of the first 4 things I’m having when some gets here.

Black bean mussles with extra beer

4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
6 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped
2 tablespoon peeled and grated fresh ginger
2 jalapeno chile, seeded and chopped
4 heaping tablespoons fermented, salted black beans, washed and crushed into a paste
2 Splashes of homemade saki
4 pounds mussels, washed and de-bearded
4 cups beer, I’m thinking of something like apa, going to try Alpha King Pale Ale
6 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
6 spring onions, chopped, might save the green part for a soup
definetely going to take and top it with cilantro

Heat the wok over high heat and add the grapeseed oil. Add the garlic, ginger, peppers, black beans and saki and stir-fry for less than 1 minute. Add the mussels and stir-fry for less than 1 minute. Add the beer and the whites of the spring onions and cook until the mussels open, stirring occasionally. Discard any that do not open. Season the mussels with the soy sauce.

Going to wash it down with extra beer. I can’t wait for the water to warm again so I can go diving for the big ones.

Deep fried soft shell crabs be delicious the next day once they come in. I plan on taking my boy to braga bridge to go fishing for the blue crabs.

I figure 12 crabs be plenty…that be 4 a peice.

6 tablespoons peeled and grated fresh ginger
3 tablespoon grapeseed oil
3 tablespoon saki
3 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
3/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
corn oil, for frying
6 heaping tablespoons plus 3 cup potato starch or flour if you lack potato starch in the cubbards
6 eggs, beaten
6 large pinches sea salt
6 large pinches pepperocino (crushed red pepper flakes)

Prepare the crab by cutting away the face, slicing just behind the eyes. removing the flab by lifting the flap on the underside of the crab and cut this off. Loosen the top “shell” of the body and remove the deadman’s fingers (gills).

I’m thinking marinating them by mixing together the ginger, grapeseed oil, saki, five-spice powder and cayenne in a bowl. Add the crabs, cover with plastic wrap and marinate for an hour.

Fill a wok halfway with corn oil. Place over medium-high heat and heat the oil to 350 degrees F, or until a cube of bread turns golden brown in 15 seconds and floats to the surface.

In a shallow bowl, stir together 6 tablespoons sweet potato starch with the beaten eggs if it’s got lumps it should be fine. Remove the crabs from the marinade. Dip the crabs in the batter and then dredge again in the remaining sweet potato starch. Carefully lower the crabs into the hot oil using a spider, or slotted spoon don’t drop them in, can burn yourself or start a fire that was (story about my uncle paul). Deep-fry until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and season with the salt and dried chile flakes while they are still hot. They won’t make it to the table, I’ll be eating them as I take them out 

I’ll have it with beer, not just any beer, a malty roasted beer….I’m thinking Morimoto Black Obi Soba Ale if I can find it.

Something else I don’t get too much of the wife detests it…but snail…specifically conch meat with a ginger soy sauce, and sweet chili sauce…something mr. tsai said is the soul of chinese cooking, is balance.

Ginger soy
4 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
4 tablespoons light soy sauce
4 tablespoons saki
1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into cubes

Sweet chili
12 tablespoons chili paste (sirachia is what I plan on using)
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 cup lime juice
2 scallions, finely sliced

2 pound conch steaks
1/2 cup cornstarch
Sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
corn oil, for frying
4 lemons, cut into wedges

Just mix the sauces in seperate bowls, nothing special to it really.

The conch on the other hand…needs special preparation. Once you get them out of the shield and removed their guts, and slice the meat into steaks. With a meat mallet, pound thesteaks to 1/8-inch thick, and then cut into 1/2-inch strips. On a plate, combine the cornstarch with a pinch of sea salt and a few grinds of white pepper. Heat 1/2-inch corn oil in a wok over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, dredge the conch strips, in batches, in the seasoned cornstarch and flash fry in the wok for 20 to 30 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 teaspoon sea salt with 1 teaspoon ground white pepper. Season the fried conch with the salt and pepper mixture.

Something I am salivating for is crawfish. Down south my mother in law made a sauce she called crawfish au gratin. She served it over chicken…I want this over next time some nice deep fried catfish.

20 tablespoons butter
3 cup diced onion
1 cup diced red bell pepper
1 tablespoon minced garlic
20 tablespoons flour
6 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoon chicken broth
3 tablespoon crab broth
1/2 tablespoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 Pinches dried thyme
12 cups milk
1 cup white wine
15 ounces American cheese, cubed
4 pound peeled crawfish tails
20 tablespoons sliced green onions

In a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and saute the onions, peppers and garlic until wilted. Add the flour and stir until you get a blond roux, about 2 minutes. Stir in the sugar, chicken stock, crab stock, granulated garlic, basil, black pepper, cayenne pepper and thyme. Add the milk and wine and cook over medium heat until the milk thickens, stirring constantly, about 6 minutes. Add the cheese and stir until the cheese melts and fully incorporates into the sauce. Add the crawfish tails and cook until heated through, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and Add the green onions.


8 (1/4 pound) catfish fillets
Creole seasonings-never measure eyeball it
8 eggs
16 cups milk
16 cups flour
16 cups cornmeal
Cottonseed oil, for frying

Rub catfish with creole seasoning. In a small bowl, beat the eggs and add the milk. Coat the catfish in flour and dip in the milk and egg mixture, then coat with cornmeal. Heat corn oil to 350 degrees F in a large skillet. Fry the catfish until golden brown, 7 to 8 minutes. Put on plate and slather with my mother in law’s crawfish sauce.


5 comments on “My first 4 dishes of summer

  1. […] My first 4 dishes of summer ( […]

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  3. Cory Gephart says:

    As soon as I detected this site I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.

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