Cajun Cornbread Dressing

I lived in Texas for most of my young adult life (not by choice, merely by circumstances) and while I respect all my Texan friends’ love of the state, the best thing about it for me was it’s proximity to Louisiana and my introduction to incredible Cajun food.  My copy of the Chef Paul Prudhomme’s first cookbook, which I’ve owned for 30+ years, is splattered, stained and badly worn, which speaks well of how much it is loved.  I have a true affinity for spicy, flavorful food and coming across this recipe was wonderful.  I’ve been making this cornbread dressing for a few years now and, while I usually make a “normal” cornbread dressing for those Thanksgiving guests whose tongues can’t handle the spicy, this is mine and Ed’s favorite by far.  Sadly, the Chef passed away this year, but we will continue to enjoy his recipes for as long as I’m in charge of cooking.

Cornbread Dressing

Courtesy of:  the late, great Chef Paul Prudhomme

Serves 8

2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp dried oregano leaves
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup finely chopped onions
3/4 cup finely chopped green peppers
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
2 cloves of finely minced garlic
2 bay leaves
1 cup chicken stock
1 Tbsp Tabasco
5 cups finely crumbled cornbread (I make Jiffy cornbread…fast and easy)
13 oz. can evaporated milk
3 eggs, lightly beaten

HOW TO:  Stir together the first 7 ingredients and set aside.  In large skillet, melt butter and cook onions, peppers, celery, garlic and bay leaves over high heat about two minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add the seasoning mixture and continue cooking until the vegetables are wilted, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the stock, Tabasco, and cook five more minutes, stirring frequently.  Turn off heat.  Remove bay leaves.  Add cornbread, milk, and eggs, stirring well.  Spoon into a greased 9″x13″ pan and bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, until browned on top.  Serves 8.



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