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Low Country Zucchini Blossoms Stuffed with Roasted Eggplant over Stone Ground Grits Scented with Roasted Garlic and Sun Dried Tomatoes

Chilled Charleston Heirloom Tomato and Goat Cheese Soup

Hawaiian Chocolate and Praline Grits Wrapped in a Crepe with Pistachio Ice Cream

Chef Audrey Aiken’s Okra Gumbo

Ingredients & Method
Below

Low Country Zucchini Blossoms Stuffed with Roasted Eggplant over Stone Ground Grits Scented with Roasted Garlic and Sun Dried Tomatoes
Serves 4

Split eggplant in half lengthwise.

With skin on, brush the inside with olive oil, salt, and white pepper.  Bake for 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees until tender and completely cooked.   With a spoon, scrap out the center of the eggplant and discard the skin.

In a medium-sized saucepan, heat 2 T. of olive oil and sweat the shallots and garlic without browning for 2 minutes.

Add the roasted eggplant, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper to taste.

Cook on low heat for 15 minutes uncovered.

Remove the thyme and bay leaf.

Puree the eggplant mixture in a food processor and chill.

Fill a plastic pastry bag with the eggplant puree and fill the zucchini blossoms.

Rub the zucchini blossoms with warm butter so as not to dry out.

Bake for 7-8 minutes at 350 degrees.

Spoon grits in a soup bowl and arrange 2 stuffed zucchini per person on top of the grits.

Drizzle a small amount of the virgin olive oil over the top and serve.

For the Grits:
Bring the vegetable stock and butter to a boil in a thick-bottomed saucepan.

Stir in the grits and return to a boil.

Reduce the heat, allowed the grits to cook for another 15 minutes at a low boil, until the grits are thick and have absorbed most of the vegetable stock.

Stir occasionally to keep the grits from sticking.

Add 1/2 cup of the heavy cream to the pot and reduce the heat, allowing the grits to cook slowly for another 10 minutes.

As the liquid is absorbed, add more cream, cooking the grits until the desired consistency.

Add salt and pepper to taste with a total cooking time of at least an hour.

The grits should be thick and full-bodied.

Fold in the roasted garlic, thyme and diced tomatoes.

Bake in 350 degrees oven for 10 minutes.

Garnish with chopped chives.

Serve very hot!

Ingredients:
- 8 young zucchini with blossoms attached
- 2 whole eggplants
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
fine
- 4 shallots, chopped fine
- salt to taste
- fresh ground white pepper to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1/2 cup virgin olive oil

For the Grits:
- 1 1/2 T. unsalted butter
- 1 1/4 cups vegetable stock
- 1/2 cup Charleston Grill stone ground grits
- 1 to 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 t. thyme
- 1/2 cup diced sun-dried tomatoes
- Salt and fresh cracked white pepper to taste


Chilled Charleston Heirloom Tomato and Goat Cheese Soup
Serves 20
Mix all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

Mix and puree in a blender in small batches.

Add the olive oil at this time, SLOWLY.

Chill for an hour in the refrigerator.

Garnish for the Bowl:
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 cucumber, seeded and diced fine
1 oz. per person fresh crumbles goat cheese
*Divide this recipe by 10 if cooking for a family.

Ingredients:
- 8 1/2 large yellow tomatoes
- 3 to 4 large onions
- 1 1/2 cups shallots
- 7 1/2 garlic cloves
- 3 to 4 Napa Valley verjus (or 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice)
- 1 3/4 T. kosher salt
- 1 1/4 T. fresh ground white pepper
- 3 to 4 seeded yellow bell peppers
- 1/3 cup olive oil
Hawaiian Chocolate and Praline Grits Wrapped in a Crepe with Pistachio Ice Cream
Serves 2-4
Bring the milk and butter to a boil in a thick-bottomed saucepan.

Stir in the grits and return to a boil.

Reduce the heat, allowing the grits to cook for 15 minutes at a low boil until the grits are thick and have absorbed most of the milk.

Stir occasionally to keep the grits from sticking.

Add 1/2 cup of the heavy cream to the pot and reduce the heat, allowing the grits to cook slowly for another 10 minutes.

AS the liquid is absorbed, add more cream, cooking the grits until the desired consistency, for a total cooking time of at least an hour.

The grits should be thick and full-bodied.

Spoon in the praline paste and 4 T. of the melted chocolate

Do not reheat on the stove!

Spoon the chocolate grits into 4 crepes and fold in the edges.

Heat each crepe for 20 seconds in a microwave.

Top each crepe with a spoon full of pistachio ice cream which has been rolled in cracked pistachios.

Finish with a drizzle of the melted chocolate over the ice cream.

Serve very hot!

Ingredients:
- 2 1/2 T. unsalted butter
- 2 1/4 cups milk
- 1/2 cup Charleston Grill stone ground grits
- 2 T. praline paste
- 6 T. melted Hawaiian bittersweet vintage chocolate

Chef Audrey Aiken’s Okra Gumbo

In a large pot, add all ingredients except corn and okra. Cook over medium/high heat until vegetables are tender. Add corn and okra. Re-warm the gumbo mixture. Serve immediately. Ingredients:
- 2 carrots, diced
- 6 ribs of celery, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 can tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cups of diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup frozen lima beans
- 1/2 t. gumbo file’
- 1/2 t. cumin
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/4 cup whole kernel corn
- 1/2 cups cut okra
(bite-sized pieces)
- 1 quart water (more can be added as desired)
Optional:
- 1 quart vegetable stock
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