Tuesday, February 2, 2010

New Orleans RISOTTO with Cajun BOUDIN BALLS - a fun Superbowl Appetizer

Well, it's Ground Hog Day ... Again. So, in tribute to Bill Murray's best movie, I took a recipe I have blogged about recently, and made just a little change to make it a little different recipe. First, the basic risotto... I LOVE risotto. So rich and full, not to be confused with it's cousin, rice. It is so much more. It can also be easily flavored with additional vegetables. Anytime we have a bit of leftover wine, I like to make risotto. Over my infamous Christmas Eve marathon dinner, I made a mushroom/spinach risotto, and blogged about it HERE.

I won't repeat the recipe, if you need one (and it does make a wonderful dish), follow this link to my original risotto post...
Mushroom and Spinach RISOTTO - Restaurant Quality Vegetarian Main Dish.

But, I made two changes. One was out of necessity, and the other was an effort to add a Cajun twist to the dish (have you heard the Saints are in the Superbowl this year?).

First, I had a package of pre-sliced mushrooms all ready to be used. I had gotten an excellent price on them from my store, and I was ready to rock and roll. BUT, the mushrooms rocked a couple weeks ago. When I opened them, there was an odor, and the bottom was slimy. They went bad.
So, that turned into good news, as I had a red pepper and some asparagus just waiting to replace the bad mushrooms. And here's a tip I just learned from watching Alton Brown's GOOD EATS show. Mushrooms store longer uncut. The minute you cut into them, the air begins to affect the texture, taste and speeds the rotting effects of time. You should NEVER buy the convenient already sliced mushrooms. Live and learn.

My other change was to BOUDIN SAUSAGE BALLS as a meat accent to the vegetarian dish. Boudin is a type of spiced pork Sausage served in France and Louisiana. When I ordered my big batch of Cajun ingredients from the CAJUN GROCER for my 24.24.24 FOODBUZZ Cajun meal, I received a package of these little gems.

If you are having a hard time finding local ingredients to recreate a Cajun meal, the CAJUN GROCER is a great mail order resource. Hundreds of specialty Louisiana and southern possibilities, as well as a GREAT recipe page.

The extra color of the Asparagus, spinach and red pepper made a wonderful look. For just a little extra kick, I love the CAJUN POWER GARLIC SAUCE (again, Cajun Grocer stocks it). I added a few raw red pepper slices for color and texture; also a bit of freshly grated Romano cheese to the finished plating.

My wife is not as thrilled with the garlic sauce as I am, so I added a bit of soy sauce to her Boudin Balls instead.

With the addition of the pork balls, it was a wonderful tasting and very filling meal!


Now, if you read
Sunday's post, you remember that I was nominated for the above award. I listed 6 lies and 1 truth about me. Click on the award to get to Sunday's post to read the "mostly" lies. It is such a fun award, and since each of the lies are just a bit true, I am going to stretch the reveal out for a few days, taking just one of the lies each day and telling the story.

So, the first NOT TRUE statement that I will reveal is that #6 is wrong. A few of you tried to guess which one is true, but only
Lea Ann guessed #6. BTW, feel free to return to the post and make a comment guessing which is true.

#7 read -
"I have an ex-wife who I never ever talk to. But, my ex-mother-in-law and I email often, at least once a week.". Nah, while my ex and I share a couple of kids, so we talk occasionally, My ex Mother-in-law didn't care for me the day we met and even less as the years went on..

OK, see you tomorrow for the next not truth.



  1. Yum! Wish I had time to order those for my Super Bowl Party. I'm afraid I'm going to have to resort of plain ol meatballs (with a dab of chipolte raspberry sauce you sent me) LOVE that stuff. Go Saints

  2. You are turning into MORE of a Cajun, every day, cher! And Boudin Balls from Comeaux's!? I live right up the street from Comeaux's! Great recipe and very original! Fun lies, too! :)

  3. I love risotto and this looks terrific. The little pork balls are interesting. I don't think I've ever heard of those before.

    I figured you were fudging about your mother-in-law. Most mothers take their child's side in any divorce. (Not always, but usually.)

  4. Need to make risotto and get some good Cajun fixins.

  5. Risotto is always a good time and those sausage balls look awesome! Heh, I don't care much for my girlfriends mother either.

  6. Those boudin balls look great! I love how you used them to spice up your risotto. I also love risotto. In general.

    I didn't think you would talk to your ex'es mother very frequently. I figure the apple doesn't fall far from the tree...so if the ex was bad, the mother must be even worse.

  7. Everything looks great Dave, but when do you sleep. Looks like the time you spend doing research, then cooking then writing your first class blog must be at least 24 hours a day :)

  8. Remind me not to check your blog around lunch time. It makes my lean cuisine look very sad. Very sad indeed. Your superbowl food looks so tasty I might even forgive you for rooting for the Saints!

  9. This does look delicious! I've never tried Boudin balls, but I bet I'd like em'! Have fun getting ready for the Super Bowl.

  10. oh my..I want some of that sausage balls!

  11. This looks PDG! Shoulder is still out. I just won't go down for the count. Have a great day and tell us more about the move.

  12. so much red so little time - I need to order some things from this cajun grocer...

  13. i never had much of an interest in cajun cookin until you came around. now i'm craving it! this looks wonderful, as usual!

  14. Mmmm, this looks delicious Dave! Yummy!

  15. Whew - when you said you were doing a tribute to Groundhog Day - I was afraid you were cooking rodents. :P This sounds delicious and I am sure it was. I knew the MIL was a lie - I'd tell you my name for my ex MIL, but it's not fit for print.

  16. HA! I knew #6 was a lie...

    Food looks great... but all this Cajun stuff... and the Saints... I think I'm with buffalodick... gawd I love that nickname ... the Colts have it