Monday, February 2, 2015

Finally, a reason to go to Brussels

Finally, a reason to go to Brussels

Making Heads & Telling Tales was  Amanda Danning’s fascinating forensic lecture on reconstructing skulls to solve mysteries. There was a full house of guests who left satisfied with both knowledge and refreshments.

These events are typically follows by a reception where docents elegantly serve tasty tidbits on fine silver. There are usually lemon squares, so I’m there. But this time, a savory bite caught my attention. It looked like a bunch of tiny smoked oysters, but they were actually Brussels sprouts cut in half and roasted. The sauce was good, but these babies were tasty on their own.
The funny thing is, I have always listed Brussels sprouts and one of the very few things I don’t care for. (Turnips, you are still on the list).
I know I don’t like them because when I was little, my mom suggested I ingest vegetables I didn’t like by taking with sip of water. Kind of like swallowing a pill. Well, those sprouts were big, and stuck in my throat. And, I did not like that cabbage vibe.
These sprouts have a completely different personality. I tracked down Laura Assunto, who made them, and she shared what had been shared with her:

Hi, Darragh!  I'm so glad you enjoyed the "Brussels Sprouts w/Aioli."  The recipe comes through my friend Teetsie Champagne, and our families love it too.  Here it is:

For approximately 40 sprouts (most instances, I choose them individually from the bin so I can have uniform size). 

Brussels sprouts, appx. 40
Canola oil, a few tablespoons
salt & pepper, to taste

6 Tablespoons mayonnaise (I used the olive oil kind)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 Tablespoon finely chopped parsley
3-5 drops of Tabasco 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut sprouts in half and place on baking sheet.  Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with fresh cracked salt and pepper.  Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown on one side.  Serve alongside dip made with a mixture of the five remaining ingredients. 

I hope you enjoy preparing these.  So easy!  Bon appetit!!
Laura Assunto 

Can’t decide?
I had a little food adventure Sunday. I was willing to share a quick bite out with my husband. This is a big deal, since I’m usually trying to get him to eat at home, where I can better control the healthy content.
Notice I said, “share.” It was Super Bowl Sunday and I knew my mother was doing something with boudain. I believe she ultimately sliced it, stuffed it with cheese and covered it in crispy panko. It went down all-too quickly. Devine. She said it would be easier to make into a casserole the next time. Let’s do it. Or rather, Mom, you go ahead and do it, and call me over.
So we were looking for this bite to share, and I was headed to where I’d seen a Mexican food truck. Then he remembered an ad about something at Popeye’s with ghost pepper. We headed to a last-known Popeye’s and it had become a doughnut shop. So then we headed to where we thought would have some sort of barbecue food truck. We couldn’t find it and ended up at an Asian place to share pineapple chicken on skewers over fried rice. We actually looked forward to each new cuisine until we started thinking about another option. It’s a good thing we are flexible to flavor.

What’s cooking for Mardi Gras?
New parades and a gumbo cook off are headed to Mardi Gras of Southeast Texas. Bring your sweetie for a Valentine weekend of lighted parades, concerts and spicy Cajun Flavors. Mardi Gras of Southeast Texas will feature a Safari Pardi theme in downtown Port Arthur from Feb. 12-15 of 2015.
I love this time of year. Ours is a family affair is full of lighted parades, live music and carnival fun. Contact Laura Childress at on how to be part of the biggest “pardi” of the year.
You don’t need to be in a krewe to enjoy Mardi Gras. Everyone is invited to view parades and attend the festival. Keep watching the schedule at visit or call the Mardi Gras office at 409-721-8717.

Want to talk about food? Darragh Doiron can be reached at