Kick off the unofficial start to summer with a Mint Julep and southern bites. Fox News's Lilian Huang Woo speaks chef and authors Virginia Willis, Elizabeth Heiskell and Rob Samuels of Maker's Mark about drinks and Southern eats as enjoyable in your back yard as trackside.
Asian Cajun BBQ Shrimp with Grilled Baguette
Barbecue shrimp in New Orleans has nothing to do with a grill, a pit, or even barbecue sauce. Barbecue shrimp in New Orleans is a dish of butter-poached shrimp flavored with dried spices and herbs. It's what happened to shrimp scampi as it traversed the Atlantic and crossed the levies of the mighty Mississippi. In the nineteenth century, trade routes opened between Sicily and New Orleans and thousands of Italians migrated to New Orleans. By 1870, New Orleans claimed the largest Italian-born population in the United States--even greater than the New York City area! A more recent immigration trend in the region has been the Vietnamese, leading to the introduction of new flavors into this Southern dish.
- 1 baguette, cut into thirds and halved lengthwise
- 1½ pounds extra-large (16/20-count) shrimp
- 1 tablespoon homemade or store-bought Creole seasoning, or to taste
- 8 tablespoons (½ cup) unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- ½ jalapeño, or to taste, seeded and chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped lemongrass
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
- Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Working with a few pieces at a time, cook the bread until browned and toasted, 2 to 3 minutes. (Alternatively, heat the oven to broil and broil the bread until toasted, about 2 minutes, depending on the strength of your broiler.) Set aside and keep warm.
Place the shrimp in a bowl. Add the Creole seasoning and toss to coat. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic, jalapeño, ginger, and lemongrass. Cook until fragrant, 45 to 60 seconds. Add the shrimp and increase the heat to medium-high. Add the lemon juice, hot sauce, and fish sauce. Cook, turning once or twice, until the shrimp are firm and pink, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Spoon the shrimp and juices atop the grilled bread. Serve immediately, with lots of napkins. Excerpted from SECRETS OF THE SOUTHERN TABLE © 2018 by Virginia Willis. Photography © 2018 by Angie Mosier. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.
So here it is in all its glory . . . our most talked about, sought after, and begged for recipe. We love these served in mint julep cups or silver goblets. Although this recipe calls for just three simple ingredients, there are a few tips that will make you a pro. Always line your rimmed baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Watch the bacon bites, and, if they are cooking too fast on the bottom, roll them over so they can caramelize evenly. As soon as they are done take them off the pan, otherwise they will superglue themselves to the foil. Once they are cool you can stack them in an airtight container and they will keep for two days. Serves 22 Hands-on 15 minutes Total 1 hour
2 cups packed light brown sugar
22 bacon slices
22 very thin breadsticks (from a 3.5-ounce package)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the brown sugar in a large pan or baking sheet. Wrap 1 bacon slice around each breadstick, starting at 1 end of the breadstick and barely overlapping the bacon. Roll the breadsticks in the brown sugar, pressing to adhere. (At this point, you can cover and refrigerate overnight, if desired.) Place breadsticks on an aluminum foil-lined 12- x 7-inch baking sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven until bacon is cooked through and almost crisp, 35 to 40 minutes. Immediately remove the warm sticks from baking sheet, and place on wax paper. (They will stick like glue if not moved immediately.) Cool to room temperature. Excerpted from What Can I Bring? by Elizabeth Heiskell. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Meredith Corporation. New York, NY. All rights reserved.
All I have to do is take one sniff of a glass of bourbon and I'm transported to a cool, fall day in Starkville at Davis Wade Stadium. I can hear the crowds and feel the excitement. Daddy never missed a game and neither did I. This drink is subtle and absolutely drinkable, and it will quickly become your most favorite game day or party go-to. It couldn't be any easier either, plus it freezes beautifully. You can make it months ahead so it's ready when you are.
Serves 10 Hands-on 10 minutes Total 10 hours, 10 minutes, including 8 hours chilling
6 cups hot brewed tea
1 cup granulated sugar
1 (12-ounce) can frozen lemonade concentrate
6 ounces frozen orange juice concentrate (from 1 [12-ounce] can)
2 cups bourbon
Combine the hot tea and sugar in a heatproof bowl; stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the lemonade concentrate and orange juice concentrate; stir until blended. Let stand until cool, about 1 hour. Stir in the bourbon. Pour the bourbon mixture into a large freezer-safe container, and freeze until almost firm, about 8 hours or overnight. Let stand at room temperature until partially thawed, about 1 hour. Spoon into glasses, and serve immediately.
Excerpted from What Can I Bring? by Elizabeth Heiskell. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Meredith Corporation. New York, NY. All rights reserved.
"The Perfect Mint Julep"
1 - ½ parts Maker's Mark® Bourbon
2 tablespoons simple syrup* muddled with mint
Splash of distilled water
Mint sprig for garnish
1 cup granulated sugar*
1 cup distilled water*
Mix together simple syrup muddled with mint, Maker's Mark® Bourbon and distilled water. Fill glass with crushed ice and pour mixture over top. Sprinkle top of ice with powdered sugar. Garnish with a mint sprig. *Simple Syrup: Heat to dissolve sugar, stirring constantly so the sugar does not burn. Set aside to cool.
"The Perfect Mint Julep"
1 liter Maker's Mark® Bourbon
Lots of fresh spearmint
- To prepare the mint extract, remove about 40 small mint leaves - wash and place in a small mixing bowl. Cover with 3 ounces of Maker's Mark. Allow the leaves to soak for 15 minutes. Then, gather the leaves in a clean, soap-free piece of cotton cloth and vigorously wring the mint bundle over the bowl of whisky. Dip the bundle again and repeat the process several times. Then set aside.
- To prepare the simple syrup, mix 1 cup of granulated sugar and one cup of water in a cooking pot. Heat to dissolve the sugar. Stir constantly so the sugar does not burn. Set aside to cool.
- To prepare the mint julep mixture, pour 3 ½ cups of Maker's Mark into a large glass bowl or glass pitcher. (Pour the remaining whisky from the liter bottle into another container and save it for another purpose). Add 1 cup of the simple syrup to the Maker's Mark.
- Now, begin adding the mint extract a tablespoon at a time to the julep mixture. Each batch of mint extract is different, so you must taste and smell after each tablespoon is added. You may have to leave the room a time or two to clear your nose. The tendency is to use too much mint. You are looking for a soft mint aroma and taste - generally about 3 tablespoons.
- When you think it's right, pour the whole mixture back into the empty liter bottle and refrigerate it for at least 24 hours to "marry" the flavors.
- To serve the mint julep, fill each glass (preferably a silver mint julep cup) half full with shaved ice. Insert a sprig of mint and then pack in more ice to about an inch over the top of the cup. Then, insert a straw that has been cut to one inch above the top of the cup so the nose is forced close to the mint when sipping the julep.
- When frost forms on the cup, pour the refrigerated julep mixture over the ice, add a sprinkle of powdered sugar to the top of the ice and serve.