Crawfish rice dressing recipe

That store bought crawfish rice stuffed chicken we had yesterday was so good I set out to see if I could replicate it.  There are scads of recipes online and I looked at several to get a feel for what would work and settled for a fairly simple one that didn’t include canned soups.

It looked like I would need to find some crawfish tails, so I took my list in hand and went to market.  Found some first place I looked.  Yay!

I set those to thaw, started some white rice,  and busied myself dicing the onions, the green pepper, and the celery.  I added some ground pork along with the ground beef and got the meat and the trinity plus a half dozen cloves of minced garlic cooking in a big skillet.

I started adding some creole seasoning and tasting and adding more until the heat seemed reasonable.

I had some seasoning made up already but thought I would nod to the folks that made the stuffed chicken that sent me on this track.  When the rice was done I added it and the crawfish tails to the mix with a half stick of butter and combined everything nicely, adding more seasoning while I was at it.

This was tasting so good!  I crammed a roasting chicken full and tied the legs up with string…

gave the whole bird a good dusting with the seasoning and set it in a 350 oven in a covered roaster for about an hour and a half.  The lid came off for another twenty minutes or so and…Ta-Da!

Easter Dinner: Garlic and Herb Roasted Lamb & Potatoes

Roast leg of lamb

Jonathan Wiggs/ Globe Staff

Edit 4/21/11: A quick note on the roasted lamb – I like most lamb rare to medium rare, but I found with the seasoning, medium was a better choice, it really allowed the flavors to infuse the meat.  It was still tender and moist, but more flavorful at medium.

As promised, this week is about our Easter menu. Starting out our Easter Dinner is a roast leg of lamb.  There are plenty of sheep locally here in Colorado but when I went to buy the roast, all I could find was New Zealand or Australian lamb.  I don’t think I looked hard enough, next year I will buy local.  It seems Colorado lamb is prized for its flavor and it  is the lamb of choice for most restaurants hereabouts.  Shame on the local markets for not carrying it.

I know lamb is not for everyone, so let me tell you, this rub is superb on a roasting chicken as well.  Coat the chicken the night before, wrap loosely in plastic and refrigerate.  Remove 30 minutes before cooking.  Roast at 375 degrees until the internal temperature is 160 degrees, allow to sit 15 minutes (at which time its internal temp should reach 165-170 for a perfectly cooked bird).

Now on to our lamb:

Garlic and Herb Roasted Lamb & Potatoes

  • 12 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves*
  • Salt*
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 5 – 7 pound boneless leg of lamb, trimmed and tied
  • 10-12 small to medium red potatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Roasting pan

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Add garlic, rosemary, 2 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper, and butter to a food processor. Process until the garlic and rosemary are finely minced. Spread mixture over the lamb. Allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Halve remaining garlic. Toss the potatoes and garlic in a bowl with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the lamb in roasting pan and surround on all sides with potatoes, roast at 450 degrees for 35 – 40 minutes and then turn oven down to 350 degrees to keep the garlic from burning. Roast until the internal temperature of the lamb is 130 degrees (rare) or 140 degrees (medium) – about 1-1/2 hours depending on the oven. Remove from the oven and put the lamb on a platter; cover tightly with aluminum foil. Allow the lamb to rest for about 20 minutes before slicing, this will bring its internal temp up to 135 (rare) and 145 (medium) as desired.

*this recipe originally called for 1 tbsp of rosemary, but that was too much for my taste buds.  Use as much as you like.  I also seriously reduced the salt, because it was much too salty for me with the original amounts.  Again, use more if desired.