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There are two types of remoulade (pronounced ruma-lade) sauces, and probably a million recipes for each. One is a white, mayonnaise-based style, and the other is a red version, which I prefer. The sauce is best if made a day ahead to let the flavors combine.
Remoulades generally fall into one of two categories: those with a mayonnaise base and those with an oil base. In the oil or mayonnaise-based versions, the reddish hue is accomplished from the addition of paprika.
Each version of remoulade may have an abundance of finely chopped vegetables, usually green onions and celery and parsley. Most are made with Creole or stone-ground mustard, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Other popular additions include lemon juice, hardboiled egg, minced garlic, hot sauce, vinegar, horseradish, capers and Worcestershire sauce. Some recipes even call for chopped pickles or piccalilli. The amount of each ingredient for the remoulade sauce varies from cook to cook.
While its original purpose was probably as a serving with meat, it is more often used as an accompaniment to seafood dishes, such as pan-fried breaded fish fillets and crab or salmon cakes.
Today, shrimp remoulade is a popular stand-alone appetizer, usually served on a bed of iceberg lettuce, but it can also be paired with other items, such as fried green tomatoes.
This is a great first-course cold appetizer. Any good remoulade sauce has a full-flavored zip that really gets your taste buds jumping for the main course.
2 Tbsp. Creole or stone-ground mustard
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsps. prepared horseradish
1 Tbsp. paprika
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 Tbsps. ketchup
2 tsps. hot sauce
3/4 cup finely diced celery
3/4 cup chopped green onion, whites and greens
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
41-50 count (large) boiled shrimp, peeled and deveined
In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the above ingredients, whisking well to incorporate the seasonings. Once blended, cover and place in the refrigerator, preferably overnight. A minimum of four hours will be required for flavor to be developed. When ready, remove from refrigerator and adjust seasonings to taste.
Place 6-8 shrimp on some greens or, even better, some fried green tomatoes (recipe below) and then spoon a generous serving of remoulade sauce on top of the shrimp. Makes 6 servings.
Southern Fried Green Tomatoes
Cut the tomatoes however thick you like them (the thicker they are, the longer they cook). Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Coat the tomatoes with flour, then dip in a beaten egg, and then dredge in cornmeal for a final coat.
Fill a skillet with enough oil to almost cover the tomatoes (about 3/4 of the way up). Get the oil nice and hot and then fry them up, cooking on each side, until golden brown. Let cool before serving.
Note: For an even better taste, I like frying a few strips of bacon (the fattier, the better) in the pan until they are crispy. Remove the bacon and add enough oil to almost cover the tomatoes. Once done, serve the tomatoes with bacon bits on top.
Crab Cakes with Remoulade Sauce
Use some remoulade sauce in place of the standard chili sauce to liven up your next serving of crab cakes.
1 lb. jumbo lump or Dungeness crabmeat
4 green onions, green part only, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup fine dry breadcrumbs
1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning (or to taste)
2 Tbsps. mayonnaise
2 Tbsps. mustard
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
1 large egg, lightly beaten
4 Tbsps. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
In a bowl, blend with a fork the green onions, parsley, breadcrumbs, Old Bay, mayo, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard and egg. Gently fold in the crabmeat and season with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if needed.
Shape the mixture into eight, fat ball-like cakes. They will flatten slightly during cooking. Place them on a platter and refrigerate for at least one hour.
In a large skillet, heat the butter and oil over medium-high heat. Carefully lay the crab cakes into the butter and oil and fry until crusty and browned, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Serve hot with a chilled sauce, such as a remoulade or chili sauce. Makes 8 servings.
Simple Caesar Salad
This recipe does not contain raw egg yolks, as does the classic version, for those concerned about the small risk of salmonella.
2 tsps. finely chopped garlic
2 inches of anchovy paste
Pinch of salt
Juice from freshly squeezed lemon
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup mayonnaise
6 Tbsps. extra-virgin olive oil
4 Tbsps. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 to 3/4 cup croutons
1 head Romaine lettuce
Ground black pepper
In a large wooden salad bowl, blend garlic, anchovy paste and salt with a whisk. Add lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce and continue whisking. Add mayonnaise and whisk for another minute until mixture becomes thick. Slowly add olive oil while continuing to whisk the mixture vigorously. Add two tablespoons of Parmesan cheese.
Add the croutons to the dressing, as well as the washed, dried and cut Romaine leaves. Toss to blend dressing, croutons and Romaine leaves. Sprinkle remaining cheese over the top. Makes 4 servings.
Norm Harding is a cooking columnist for the Beacon. To send him recipes, e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.