Okra Gumbo with Sausage and Fish

My friend Mike offers us his classic gumbo recipe with okra, andouille and seafood. I wish I had gotten a chance to taste it, but the color of that roux is evidence enough that it must have been great.

This recipe was adapted from several in Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen. This gumbo is a family favorite. It isn’t too spicy, has a delicious toasty, nutty complexity from the roux, and the okra keeps it from being too thin (the darker you make a roux, the less thickening power it has). It is, however, a definite time commitment. This is a recipe where you should have everything completely prepped and lain out before you start heating the oil for the roux.

Gumbo previously: Gumbo with Chicken, Andouille and Shrimp
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Spiced Apple Pancakes

I’m not much of a pancakes person, to be honest. But whenever we had big sleepovers at Kat and Marissa’s house last year, we’d make big breakfasts with scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon and Kat’s apple pancakes. So when

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I was contributing to breakfast for a group of friends this weekend — several states away from Kat — I just had to make apple pancakes.

It was my first attempt at all-from-scratch pancakes, and I have to say I was happy with them. Real butter and buttermilk are the foundation for great homemade pancakes. These are enhanced by warm spices — cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger — and apple chunks that still pop when you bite in. They’ll make a pancakes person out of anyone.

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Butterflied Dijon Chicken with Roasted Vegetables

My friend Mike is back with another great recipe. Here he spatchcocks the chicken so it roasts faster and more evenly, keeping the white meat just as juicy as the dark. See Mike’s other posts here.

This is a relatively simple and wonderfully delicious way to roast chicken. The juices from the chicken baste the vegetables while they roast together, while the mustard and herbs de Provence pair very well. And it’s much quicker than many other roast chicken recipes! The recipe was inspired by Jacques Pepin’s “Fast Food My Way” TV series.

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