Tag Archives: Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent

Cranberry Orange Recipe-Fresh & Easy!

 

cranberry-relish

This Quick, Easy & Delicious Cranberry Orange Relish recipe is the perfect addition to Thanksgiving dinner AND those leftover Turkey Sandwiches!

 

Cranberry Orange Relish

Yields: 4 cups

Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

1 cup fresh cranberries

1 cup dried cranberries

½ cup sugar

½ cup dark brown sugar

1large orange, peeled and segmented

1 teaspoon orange zest

1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice

1 cup water

½ cup orange liqueur (optional)

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 pinch sea salt

 

Directions:

Combine all the ingredients into a medium-sized, heavy bottom sauce pan.

Bring the Cranberry Orange Relish up to the first boil and then reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally.

Simmer the mixture until the cranberries burst and the relish thickens, about 25 minutes.

Remove from heat and allow the relish to cool.

The relish will thicken as it cools.

 

From Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2014 Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

Thanksgiving Side Dish

 

Looking for a Quick & Easy Thanksgiving Dinner side dish?

 

greenbeans

You’re in luck! Fresh (or flash frozen) string beans and smoked bacon makes this dish a crowd pleaser!

String Beans & Bacon

Yields 6 servings

Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill booker

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

3 pounds fresh sting beans
½ pound smoked cooked bacon, crumbled
1 1/2 -2 cups chicken stock, plus more if needed
1 small dried cayenne pepper

salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Directions:
Remove the ends from the beans, snap in half, place into a colander and rinse with cold water. Set aside to drain.
In a large cast iron Dutch oven, combine the string beans, bacon, water, and cayenne and black pepper.

Cover tightly and cook over medium-low heat, for about 20-25 minutes, or until the beans are soft and tender.

Adjust seasoning with pepper and additional salt, as needed.

Southern Divas of the New South Holiday Dinner

 

candy cane truffles

Southern Divas of the New South Holiday Dinner                             Friday, December 9th, 2016

Join French-trained Southern Chef Jennifer Booker and James Beard Award-winning cookbook author Cynthia Graubart as they explore what the New South looks like through the eyes of two female chefs.  The ladies are back with a holiday installment of the Southern Divas� seated dinner, demonstration, and conversation. They will share their modern interpretation of Southern classics, present the elegance of the South, its communal nature, and the abundance of local products. Come join us for down-home comfort to celebrate the holidays – you don’t want to miss it.

Buche de Noel

 
The Southern Divas menu includes:
• Southern Tapas: Pickled Shrimp, Greens-stuffed Mushrooms, Baked Pimento Cheese, and Mini Corn Muffins
• Sparkling Holiday Punch
• Winter Kale Salad with Fried Chicken Livers
• Apple-Stuffed Pork Loin with Spiced Pear Sauce
• Root Vegetable Gratin
• String Beans with Crispy Shallots
• Southern Divas Cake Parade: Coconut Cake, Hummingbird Cake, German Chocolate Cake, 7-up Pound Cake, Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Pie, Sweet Potato Pie

 

Tips for a Stress-Free Thanksgiving

 

 

RoastedTurkey300

                                                      Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays and I always use these               5 Time Saving Tips           for a Stress Free Thanksgiving!

 

It’s that time of year again!  The leaves are changing, the days are getting shorter, and fall is in the air.  It’s also the time of year where the stresses of the holidays are looming ahead. Especially the stresses of preparing that perfect Thanksgiving meal.

 5 Time Saving Tips that are guaranteed to help you stress less, save money, and enjoy your Thanksgiving more!

  1. Plan Your Thanksgiving Menu Early: Are you serving turkey, chicken, or goose? Will there be wine or your special holiday punch? Now is the time to plan your Thanksgiving menu; from soup to nuts. Once you’ve planned your menu you can pull out your recipes and check your cabinets to see what you have in stock and what you’ll need to buy. Write out your shopping list, listing everything you need, and you won’t have to worry about those last minute trips to the store spoiling Thanksgiving Day
  1. Shop Now: Now that you have your grocery list in hand it’s time to head to the grocery store.  Buy your non-perishables now and save yourself time later, not to mention you will be able to take advantage of the pre-holiday sales, avoid the long lines and the lack of parking spots. When I shop I keep like items together in my shopping cart so that they are together during checkout and get bagged together as well. Once you get your groceries home, leave them bagged and simply set them aside until you’re ready for them. All you have left to buy are your perishable items and can purchase them as much as a week out.
  1. Cook Now, Relax Later: Decide on the dishes that can be cooked ahead of time and either stored in the refrigerator or frozen until right before Thanksgiving. For example, can you make the cornbread for your cornbread stuffing now and freeze it until you’re ready for it?  What about the cranberry relish, collard greens, and sweet potato pies?  Cook and store as many of the items on your menu as possible and defrost them the day before Thanksgiving.  This tip will definitely save you time and make cooking your holiday meal more relaxed.

 

  1. Get Organized: Now that you have your menu planned, your recipes pulled, have shopped for your non-perishables items, and even precooked some of your dishes; it’s time to decide on your table decor. Go ahead and pull your favorite holiday tablecloth, place mats, and napkins.  Make sure that they don’t have any holes or stains and have them laundered and ironed.  If you’re using your ‘special occasion’ dishes, flatware, and stemware go ahead and get them out of storage, counted, and wiped down.  Doing this now will guarantee you the table of your dreams without the usual holiday stress.
  1. Ask For Help: Thanksgiving Day is finally here and it’s time to enlist some help with the finishing touches. Ask someone to set the table.  Since the linen is ironed and the dishes counted, this should be an easy task.  Someone else can pour the drinks or plate the salads.  If you’ve invited guests to share your meal, don’t be shy about asking them to bring a dish to share as well. It’s always nice to have an extra appetizer or dessert or a nice bottle of wine.

You’ve done it! Planned the perfect menu, set a beautiful table, and cooked your Thanksgiving meal to perfection.  Now it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labor-all without the usual stresses associated with the holidays.

RoastedTurkey

Magic Beans

Anatomy of a Classic: French-Style Succotash

Garden & Gun Succotash Screen Shot

BY KIM SEVERSON – GEORGIA – JUNE/JULY 2016

Butter beans and bacon blend with tarragon and cream in a Georgia chef’s French-accented succotash

Jennifer Hill Booker cooks in the place where the South meets France. She arrived there on a trail that took her from a Mississippi Delta farm to culinary school in Oklahoma and then, by virtue of her marriage to a military man, a year studying at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. The result was her cookbook, Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, published in 2014.

“Southern and French food really are different sides of the same coin,” Booker says from her home in Lilburn, Georgia, the Atlanta suburb where she raises two teenage daughters and works as a personal chef and caterer. “The French love their pig just like we do. And they don’t throw away anything. If you’re a farmer or rely on the land for your food, you are very careful with what you do with it.”

That’s one reason why succotash, the classic mix of beans and corn that makes great use of two of summer’s most prolific crops, is a staple in her kitchen, though it wasn’t always. As a child, she never really liked the dish—at least when it appeared studded with waxy lima beans. (“I still dislike them,” she says.) But she had grown up eating tender butter beans cooked with salt pork or pieces of smoked ham. One summer day, Booker realized she could use them to reclaim succotash, and give it a nice French twist, too.

Succotash has always been the most adaptive of recipes. An early version of it was most likely on the table at the pilgrims’ Thanksgiving, courtesy of their Native American guests, and some credit the Narragansett word for broken corn kernels—sohquttahhash—for giving the dish its name. For Booker, French-style lardons of bacon echoed the salt pork her family used as seasoning. A pour of cream and plenty of soft, anise-flavored tarragon leaves add more Gallic flair. The trick is to think like a chef when chopping the vegetables. Precise knife work will result in a more beautiful dish and further elevate what is, at its heart, a humble plate of beans and corn cooked together.

“Everyone has the thing they are good at, and mine is balancing color, texture, and seasoning,” Booker says. “My grandmother and my mother always had color on the table. I just enjoy beautiful food.”

Cheers! It’s National Cocktail Day!

Have a drink on me!

Enjoy this refreshing Lavender Lemonade-perfect for Saturday sip!

 Lavender Lemonade

A refreshing drink on a hot summer’s day that quenches the thirst with or without the vodka!

Lavender Lemonade
Lavender Lemonade

Makes 2 Lavender Lemonades

Ingredients:

4 ounces Vodka

2 ounces Lavender simple syrup

1 teaspoon fresh Lavender flowers

2 ounces fresh lemon juice

1 cup Crushed Ice

4 ounces Seltzer water or Club Soda

 

Garnish:

2 Slices lemon

 

Directions:

Pour the Vodka and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker; add the lavender flowers and lemon juice.

Muddle until the lavender flowers are broken into small pieces.

Add crushed ice and shake about 10 seconds.

Strain into a chilled martini or glass or tumbler and top with club soda and garnish with a slice of lemon.

 

From Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2014 Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

 

Lavender Syrup

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Yields 1 ½ cups

 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups fresh lavender flowers

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

 

Directions:

In a saucepan bring sugar, water and lavender to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Simmer syrup, undisturbed, 20 minutes.

Pour syrup through a fine sieve, pressing hard on solids, and cool. Syrup will thicken as it cools.

Syrup keeps, covered and chilled, 2 weeks.

 

From Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2014 Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

 

 

 

Spice Up Your Holidays!

Spice up your Holidays!

Try this Simple & Delicious Spiced Wine Recipe.

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

Rich full-bodied wine, fragrant spices and fresh citrus makes this Spiced Wine a real holiday treat!

Spiced Wine

Yields 6 healthy servings

Ingredients:

1 bottle full-bodied red wine

½ cup dark brown sugar

1 orange, zest only

1 lemon, zest only

3 black peppercorns, crushed

2 cardamom pods, crushed

1 cinnamon stick

2 cloves

1/2 cup kirsch

 

Garnish:

12 cinnamon sticks

Directions:

In a large saucepan, combine the red wine with the sugar, the orange and lemon zests, peppercorns, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and cloves.

Over moderate heat, slowly bring the wine to a very low simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

Remove from the heat, strain out the zest and spices; and stir in the kirsch.

Ladle the spiced wine into heatproof glasses, garnish with cinnamon sticks, and serve hot.

 

Turkey 911: Helpful Tips for the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey . . EVER!

RoastedTurkey

Here are few tips from chef and author of Southern cookbook, Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, to help make your Thanksgiving turkey your BEST yet!

Prerequisites for Cooking the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey

 

Number One: The temperature in your oven has to be accurate.
You might want to test your oven before the big day by simply preheating it to 250° and testing it with a cooking thermometer. Start your turkey out uncovered in a 425*F oven for 30 minutes. Cover the breast with aluminum foil and drop the temperature down to 325*F for the remainder of the cooking time. This is guarantees a turkey that is crisp outside and juicy inside.

Number Two: Your turkey has been safely and totally thawed and cleaned. The only safe way to thaw a frozen turkey is to place it in the refrigerator. Other methods such as running cold water over it or placing it in a microwave oven are not safe because of the chance of bacterial growth and food borne illness. So place your frozen bird in the refrigerator at least 2 days before the big day.

 

Number Three: Be sure to remove the neck and giblets from the inside of the turkey! Don’t laugh!  People have done this, so check both the top AND the bottom of your turkey for them. There is nothing quite as anti-climactic is carving the Thanksgiving turkey and having the bag of giblets pop out.
Number Four: Know the actual weight of the turkey. Knowing this number guarantees that you cook your turkey the right amount of time and end up with a turkey that’s golden brown, juicy, and delicious. It also helps plan the timing of your side dishes as well. A good rule of thumb to figure out when to start cooking your Thanksgiving turkey is to back track from the time you want to have it on the table.

 

Number Five: Add your dressing last. Stuff your turkey with dressing once the turkey is totally done and has an internal cooking temperature of 165*F. NEVER stuff a raw turkey-the dressing will absorb the turkey’s uncooked blood and juices and can lead to food borne illness.

 

RoastedTurkey300

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish. Yum!

 

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

Summertime in Georgia means lazy days by the pool, picnics at the park, and gardens, gardens, gardens! For all of you avid gardeners, it’s time to reap the rewards of all of the hard work you’ve put into your gardens this year! Not a gardener?  Not to worry, there is enough seasonal bounty to go around! I’m talking about crisp bell peppers, spicy onions, sweet and juicy tomatoes, and everything in between.

 

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

With tomatoes and bell peppers in season, this canned Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish recipe is the ideal way to capture summer in a jar! It’s delicious now and the perfect way to preserve summer vegetables and enjoy them all year round. I also LOVE the fact that this recipe is extremely versatile. My family enjoys it on hotdogs, over peas and beans (pinto beans are my favorite), and even as a zesty addition to Southern style potato salad.

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

So the next time you harvest veggies from your garden or make a trip to your local farmer’s market, be sure and take a copy of this recipe with you and pick up everything you need to make Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish. And be sure to take a peek at all of the fresh and inviting recipes listed on ProduceBites -You’ll be glad that you did.

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish

Yields 8-10 pints

Relish Ingredients:

  • 4 cups onions, rough chopped
  • 1 large cabbage, cored and rough chopped into ¼ inch pieces
  • 4 cups green tomatoes, cored and rough chopped
  • 4 cups green and red bell peppers, rough chopped into ¼ pieces
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup pickling salt
  • 6 cups sugar
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ cup Pickling Spice

Pickling Spice Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons whole mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice berries
  • 2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper corns
  • 1 teaspoon dried mace
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 2 dried bay leaves, crumbled
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, crushed
  • 6 whole cloves

To Prepare Picking Spice:

  1. Add all ingredients to a glass jar with a tight fitting lid.
  2. Seal tightly and shake to combine.
  3. This spice mixture will last about 3 months when keep in a cool dark place.

Relish Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the onions, cabbage, green tomatoes, bell peppers, garlic and salt.
  2. Cover with a clean cloth and let stand room temperature overnight or at least 12 hours. Transfer vegetables to cheese cloth lined colander or sieve and drain well. This may take up to 2 hours.
  3. Place vegetables in a large stainless steel stock pot and add sugar, vinegar, water and Pickling Spice.
  4. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Pack into hot sterilized pint jars, wiping the rim of the jars clean.
  5. Seal and process in a pot of boiling water, making sure the water covers the jar tops with at least 2 inches of water, slowly bring water to a boil, and process for 5 minutes.
  6. Remove pot from heat and allow jars to cool to room temperature while in processing water.
  7. Remove from water, wipe dry and make sure all jars are tightly sealed. You know that they are sealed when you are able to press the center of the lids without getting any bounce back.
  8. Store unopened jars in a cool dark place for a year or more-so long as the jar remains tightly sealed.
  9. Enjoy on hotdogs and burgers, over beans and greens and even in potato salad!

For other delicious  & seasonal recipes, go to ProduceBites, A Blog For People Who Love Georgia Grown Fruits And Vegetables.

Photo credit to Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn