Somber Reptile


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Most of these recipes were sent to us from friends and family. All recipes are Somber Reptile approved!

Chicken & Shrimp Gumbo
Grilled Creole Chicken
Shrimp Creole
Grilled Shrimp Pizza
Oysters Bienville
Pork Jambalaya
Trout Marguery
Artichoke Cream Soup
Remoulade Sauce
Hollandaise Sauce
Special Hamburger Sauce
Avocado Mayonnaise
Chilled, Pickled Slaw


Chicken And Sausage Gumbo

1 (4 lb.) hen, cut up 
1/4 cup cooking oil 
1 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped white onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
2/3 cup chopped bell pepper
1 gallon water
1 1/2 lbs. sausage cut in small pieces
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chopped green onion tops 
1/4 cup chopped parsley

 In large pot, brown the chicken in 1/4 cup oil, remove chicken when brown. Make a roux by adding flour and cooking until it’s about the color of butterscotch. Return chicken to pot. Add white onions, celery and bell pepper and cook until soft. Add 2 quarts of water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add 2 more quarts of water and sausage. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat for about 2 hours until chicken begins to get tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add green onions. Continue to cook until chicken is tender. Add parsley about 30 minutes before serving. Makes 8 servings.

Chilled Pickled Slaw

 Per serving: 52 Calories; 1.9 grams Fat @ 30% of Calories; 0 mg Cholesterol; 279 mg Sodium.

1 large cabbage, shaved
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, diced
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon turmeric, ground
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 tablespoon salt

Shave the cabbage 1/4″ thick and toss with onion and bell pepper. In a small sauce pan, combine sugar, turmeric, vinegar, celery seed, dry mustard and salt. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add the oil to vinegar mixture. Pour the hot liquid over cabbage, allow to cool and marinate for at least 12 hours before serving. Makes 6 servings.

Grilled Shrimp Pizza

This is a fun and exciting way to make pizzas, a great change of pace for outdoor entertaining. The dough can be made ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator overnight. Leftover dough can be used to make pretzels, bagels or loaves of bread.

Per serving: 464 Calories; 10 grams Fat @ 20% Calories; 185 mg Cholesterol; 544 mg Sodium.

1 cup warm water
1 package active dry yeast
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 teaspoon dry oregano salt and pepper to taste bamboo or metal skewers
1 cup part.skim milk ricoifa cheese
4 Roma tomatoes, sliced
1/4 cup Greek black olives,pitted and halved
1/2 cup fresh basil, coarsely chopped

1. Proof the yeast in the warm water. Knead the yeast, oil and flour together. Allow to rise in a warm place until double in size. Punch down and knead in the garlic. Cut into
1-cup portions and set aside.

2. Season the shrimp with oregano, salt and pepper and place on bamboo or metal skewers. Be sure not to overcrowd the skewers. Placing shrimp too closely together will make the ones on the ends cook faster than the ones in the middle, causing some of the shrimp to be dry. 3. Prepare a hot grill and spread the coals out evenly. Grill shrimp 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill.

4. Take one ball of dough and press into a circle. Turn the circle of dough in your hands like you are turning the wheel of a car; the weight of the dough will shape it into a uniform disc. Place directly on the grill. Grill until the underside is crispy. Turn and spread ricotta cheese on the crispy top. Decoratively arrange the tomatoes, shrimp and olives. Close the lid as the crust finishes cooking and the ingredients warm slightly. Garnish with chopped basil. Repeat with each ball of dough. Makes 6 servings.

Grilled Creole Chicken

This is a rendition of the Louisiana classic Chicken Creole. Leave the meat on the bones for grilling. The chicken will have more flavor and maintain better moisture

Per serving: 300 calories; 2 grams Fat @ 7% of Calories; 88 mg Cholesterol; 160 mg Sodium.

2 1/2 pounds skinless chicken breasts, halved
salt end pepper to taste
1 redbellpeppsr
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon garlic minced
1/2 cup onion, chopped
3 large tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 1/2 cups cooked white rice
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

  1. Prepare grill and fire. Meanwhile, season chicken with salt and pepper. Place the whole red bell pepper on the grill and char the skin on all sides. Remove pepper and place in an air tight container. Grill chicken breasts about 5 minutes on each side, or until just cooked through. When chicken is done, remove from grill, cover with aluminum foil and keep in a warm place.
  2. In a medium sauce pan, saut6 garlic and onion in oil for 1 minute. Add tomatoes. Peel the charred skin away from the pepper, remove seeds and chop. Add to tomatoes. Serve chicken breasts with creole sauce and garnish with parsley. Makes 6 servings.

Special Hamburger Sause

2 Tbs. mayonnaise
2 tsp. hickory-smoke-flavored barbecue sauce
2 tsp. sweet pickle relish
2 drops Tabasco

Mix all the ingredients together in a small dish or measuring cup.
Slather the bun generously on both sides with the sauce, and apply
the burger and cheese and whatever else you like.

Hollandaise Sauce

 1/2 lbs plus 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cit into 1/2″ chips
    4 egg yolks
    1 tablespoon cold water
    2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    1/4 teaspoon white pepper
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    Pinch of cayenne

1. In a small heavy skillet, melt butter over medium heat, stirring so that it melts completely without browning. Remove skillet from the heat and cover tightly to keep the butter warm.

2. Combine egg yolks and water in an enameled or stainless steel saucepan and beat vigorously with a wire whisk until foamy. Place the pan over low heat and continue whisking until the mixture thickens and doubles in volume. Do not let the egg yolks come anywhere near a boil. If necessary, lift the pan off the heat from time to time to cool it. Still whisking constantly, pour in the warm butter very slowly and continue to whisk until the sauce thickens. Beat in the lemon juice, pepper, salt and cayenne. Serve at once or keep warm in the pan set over a bowl of hot water.

Pork Jambalaya

3 lbs. pork, cut in small pieces
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups chopped white onions
2/3 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
salt and pepper to taste
2 1/2 cups long grain rice
1 cup chopped green onion tops
1 cup chopped parsley

Brown pork in a heavy pot. Remove pork, add flour and oil and cook on medium heat until flour is brown. Return pork to pot. Add white onions, celery and bell pepper and cook until soft. Add I quart water and cook over medium heat until pork is tender, about 45 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Add rice, 2 cups of water, green onions and parsley. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low and cook until done. Makes 8 servings.


Oysters Bienville

rock salt
2 dozen oysters, shucked, with all their liquor and the deeper halves of their shells reserved
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1/2 pounds fresh white mushrooms, wiped clean, trimmed and chopped
6 slices bacon, chopped
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white wine
2 cups milk
1/4 cup fresh lemon Juice
1 1/2 teaspoons cayenne
1 teaspoon salt
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Spread the rock salt to a depth of about ½” in four 9” pie pans. Arrange the pans on two large baking sheets and put them in the oven to heat the salt while you prepare the oysters.
2. Drain the oysters and reserve 1 ½ cups of the liquor. If there is less than this amount, add water. Set oysters and liquor aside. Scrub oyster shells well with a brush and rinse in hot water. Dry and set aside.
3. Put the shrimp, mushrooms bacon, green onions, parsley and garlic in a food processor and pulse once or twice to blend. Do not puree.
4. Heat the butter in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add the shrimp mixture and, stirring often, cook until almost all the liquid in the pan evaporates, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the flour and mix well. Then, stirring constantly, gradually pour in the wine, milk and the oyster liquor. Cook, stirring, until the sauce thickens. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Remove from the heat and stir in lemon juice, cayenne and salt. Beat in the egg yolks, mixing well.
6. Arrange 6 oyster shells over the rock salt in each of the pans and place an oyster in each shell. Spoon the sauce equally over the oysters. Bake until the sauce is bubbly and the oysters begin to curl at the edges, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve hot. Makes 4 servings.

Shrimp Creole

1/4 cup margarine
2 cups chopped white onions
1 1/2 cups chopped green onion tops
1 cup chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped bell pepper
1 can diced tomatoes
3 lbs. shrimp, peeled and deveined
salt and pepper

1. In a heavy pot over medium heat, melt margarine. Add onions, green onions, celery and bell pepper and cook until soft.
2. Add tomatoes and cook on a low fire for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add shrimp and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 30 minutes. Serve over rice. Makes 8 servings.

Remoulade Sauce

Makes 3 Cups
        2 cup maonnaise
        1 cup ‘hot sauce’
        4 tbs chopped dill
        2 tbs horseradish
        4 tbs chopped green  onion
        2 tbs lemon juice
        1 tbs drained capers

Thoroughly mix all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Chill for one hour.

Trout Marguery

2 tablespoons butter, softened, plus 
2 tablespoons butter cut into 1/2″chips
1/4 pound fresh white mushrooms, wiped clean end cut Into 1/4″ slices 
1/4 cup finely chopped green onions 
4 fillets of trout, each about 8 ounces 
1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
1/2 cup dry white wine
12 medium-size uncooked shrimp (about 1/2 pound), peeled and deveined
1 cup hollandaise sauce (recipe)
1/8 teaspoon cayenne

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Spread one tablespoon of softened butter on the bottom of a large baking pan. Cut a piece of parchment or wax paper to fit snugly inside the pan and spread one side of the paper with the remaining tablespoon of softened butter. Set paper aside. Scatter mushrooms and green onions over the bottom of the pan and lay the fish fillets over them. Sprinkle the fish with 1 teaspoon of salt and pour in the wine. Bring to a simmer on top of the stove, cover the fish with the parchment or wax paper, buttered side down, and poach the fish in the oven for about 15 minutes, or until the fillets are firm.
3. Rinse the shrimp and pat them dry. In a large, heavy skillet, melt the 2 tablespoons of butter chips over medium heat. Add the shrimp and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until they turn pink. Set the skillet aside.
4. Prepare the hollandaise sauce (recipe).
5. Transfer the cooked fish to an oven-proof platter. Strain the poaching liquid through a fine sieve into a small enameled saucepan and boil it over high heat until reduced to about 2 tablespoons. With a wire whisk, beat the liquid into the hollandaise. Add the cayenne and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning to taste. Preheat broiler to its highest setting. Place 3 shrimp on the top of each fish fillet, then spoon the sauce over the top, covering the fish completely. Broil for about 30 seconds, or until the sauce is lightly browned. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.


Patience is the main virtue to bring to bear on this recipe.

10 lbs. veal bones
2 onions
4 ribs celery, or the tops (leaves and all) from one bunch
Stems from one bunch of parsley
2 carrots
2 bay leaves
28 oz. tomato puree
3 cups dry red wine

Bouquet garni:
1 Tbs. black peppercorns
1 tsp. marjoram
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. sage

1. Split the bones into good-sized chunks (you might ask the butcher to do this; if you’re lucky, maybe he will). Pile the bones into a big roasting pan and roast them in the broiler at 550 degrees until they brown almost to black. Scatter them around once or twice while this is going on to get a good overall browning. This will take about 20-30 minutes.
2. Chop all the vegetables coarseand refrigerate overnight. 

3. The next day, most of the fat in the stock will have risen to the top and solidified, making it very easy to remove. After doing this, pour the stock into a clean saucepan and reduce over a low fire. Use the corners of paper towels to remove any droplets of fat that may rise to the surface. You can reduce the stock to the point that it becomes almost gelatinous. At minimum, it should be able to coat a spoon. This recipe makes one to three cups.

Artichoke Cream Soup

4 fresh artichokes
1 lemon, quartered
1 small onion, sliced
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 stick butter
2 Tbs. flour
Salt and pepper
2 bay leaves

1. Wash and trim the artichokes, removing all bruised leaves and the top inch or so. Cut the artichokes in half and place in six cups of boiling water seasoned with the lemon, onion, bay leaves, salt, and pepper.
2. Simmer for 40 minutes, then remove artichokes from the liquid. When cool, remove leaves and separate hearts and bottoms. Remove any pink or purple leaves, and any fuzzy parts.
3. Puree the hearts and the soft meat from the leaves in a blender and set aside. 4. Make a light roux from the butter and flour. Whisk this into the liquid and return to a boil. Add the pureed artichokes and boil for 10 minutes.
5. Strain the soup through a fine sieve into a clean pot. Add the cream and the diced artichoke bottoms. Heat through, and serve. Serves six to eight. To make this absurdly elegant, top each bowl with a poached quail egg.

Avocado Mayonnaise

This is great as a sandwich spread. Ultimate use: a grilled tuna sandwich. It can be thinned out with a little more water or buttermilk to make a salad dressing.

2 ripe avocados
1 egg
6 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 Tbs. Cremona or Dijon mustard
2 Tbs. buttermilk
Pinch salt
1/4 tsp. Tabasco green pepper sauce

1. Slice the avocados and scoop the pulp into a food processor bowl. Remove any hard parts you may encounter. Immediately spoon the olive oil over it to keep it from turning brown.
2. Add all the other ingredients and process into a mayonnaise texture. Add a little more buttermilk to lighten the texture if you like. Makes about two cups.