Crawfish, Bacon and Jalapeno Mac & Cheese with Fried Gulf Oysters
This summer, Chef Nick Gile is unveiling new small plates on the dinner menu at Richard Fiske’s Martini Bar & Restaurant in New Orleans. The historic club located in the heart of the French Quarter in the Chateau Le Moyne Hotel is known for its martinis, music and food. New menu additions will showcase Southern staple foods, like this mac & cheese, but with a new global-inspired twist.
1 oz. butter
1 oz. oil
1 small onion, diced
1 small red pepper, diced
2-3 Jalapeno peppers, diced with seeds removed
1 cup bacon, cooked and chopped
1 lb. Louisiana crawfish tails, chopped
1 Tbsp. garlic, chopped
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. tarragon
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. Cajun spice
2-4 bay leaves
1/4 cup sherry
3 cups crawfish or shrimp stock
1 cup blonde roux (approximately)
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 lb. white cheddar, grated
1/2 lb. Manchego cheese, grated
2 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
1 lb. Orecchiette pasta, cooked
12-16 fresh Gulf oysters, shucked
2 cups corn flour, seasoned with 1 Tbsp. Cajun spice
Heat butter and oil in a medium sauce pot, adding onions and peppers and sautéing for 3-4 minutes. Add bacon, garlic and spices. Sauté another 2 minutes. Deglaze with the sherry, add stock and let simmer for 10 minutes.
Bring to a boil and add roux 1/4 cup at a time to control thickness. Add cream, cheeses (saving 1 cup) crawfish and parsley. Stir well and let simmer for 5 minutes. Toss sauce with cooked pasta and top with remaining cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Pat oysters in seasoned corn flour and fry in peanut oil for 2-3 minutes. Top with fried oysters and enjoy.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Chef Nick Gile.