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Mardi Gras + Super Bowl = Super Gras!

Posted by:

Krista Fredrick | January 31, 2013

Ah, Mardi Gras. An experience of king cake, beads, krewes, parades, coconuts, and of course, good ole Cajun food—plus this year, the Super Bowl. And if you weren’t able to get a room for Super Gras (what the combined events are being called), then reacquaint (or acquaint) your taste buds with the soulful favors of New Orleans. Because what taste buds would not crave jambalaya, seafood gumbo, or shrimp étouffée?

This year, we have found a few variations on the classic Mardi Gras food recipes for old and new dining fans. Plus, you can serve them on Super Bowl weekend and join in on the Super Gras festivities from the comfort of home. Here’s a selection from EveryDay with Rachel Ray and Mardi Gras Day –

Shrimp and Grits with Okra

from EveryDay with Rachel Ray

Serves 5

  • 1 12-ounce can evaporated milk
  • 1-1/2 cups quick-cooking grits
  • 1-1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese (about 5 ounces)
  • 5 scallions, white and green portions thinly sliced separately
  • Salt and pepper
  • 6 slices bacon, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 ounce cut okra, thawed and patted dry
  • 3 tablespoons flour

Put 5 cups water and 1 ½ ounces of evaporated in a saucepan and bring mixture to a boil. Decrease heat to medium low and add in the grits, stirring as needed for 15 minutes. Then, stir in the cheddar and three quarters of the scallion greens, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Meanwhile, cook the bacon over medium-high heat in another burner until nearly crisp. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the shrimp and, together with the scallion whites, stir into the pan. Cook until scallions are opaque. Transfer the mixture into a bowl because you’ll need the same pan for the okra.

Lather the pan with olive oil and put over high heat. Salt-and-pepper the okra and toss with flour. Then fry okra, stirring when needed, until golden-brown in spots.

Divvy up the grits for four bowls and top with the okra and shrimp mixture. Garnish with the leftover scallion greens.


Cajun Shrimp Creole

from Mardi Gras Day

Serves 4-6

  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 pounds raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 pod garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 2 teaspoons salt (or less, to taste)
  • Tabasco to taste
  • 2 (8-ounce) cans tomato sauce

Mix flour and oil into a roux until its light-brown. Drop in the shrimp and place over low heat. Add the greens (green pepper, parsley, garlic, onion) and sauté for 2 minutes. Dial up the heat to medium and add water in portions, stirring as you go. Add the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let simmer for one hour. Stir mixture from time to time.

Best served with steaming rice.


Louisiana Stuffed Crabs

from Mardi Gras Day

Serves 8

  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 1/2 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 pound crab meat
  • 3 tablespoons minced green onion, bulbs only
  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1 egg beaten with 1/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup plain bread crumbs
  • Buttered bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Over low fire, melt margarine in skillet before adding your bell pepper, celery, and onions. Cook until the veggies are tender, then add green onions, parsley, and crab meat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Drizzle pepper, salt, and lemon juice on the veggies. Add the Tabasco and egg-milk mixture plus some Worcestershire sauce.

Set aside for a few minutes and then add 3/4 cup bread crumbs to give body to stuffing. Pat stuffing into the crab shells and sprinkle with the buttered bread crumbs. Bake for about 15 minutes or until it turns light brown.

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