It sounds like a ridiculously small accomplishment, succeeding at making a recipe. But let me tell you why it was a big deal…it was a big deal because a good etouffee is NOT easy to make! Now don’t laugh – I know that you’re thinking “how hard can it be?” Well, let me tell you how hard it can be!
But before I tell you what it was an accomplishment, you might be asking what etouffee is. Etouffee (pronounced ay-too-fay) is similar to gumbo. It’s a Cajun/creole dish typically served with shellfish or chicken over rice. And if you’ve ever had good etouffee, it’s like a little bite of heaven.
Let me give you the first couple of steps of the recipe:
“Heat oil in a 6-qt. Dutch oven over medium-high heat until it begins to smoke. Add flour, whisking constantly, and cook for 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium and cook, whisking constantly, until roux is the color of milk chocolate, about 12–15 minutes. Add celery, onions, and peppers, and cook, stirring constantly, until soft, about 5 minutes.”
That is 20 minutes of constant whisking and stirring people, and if you know me, you know I don’t have patience for that kind of nonsense! This is a recipe that I would normally cheat on, and it would come out and not be half as good as it should be.
But Jason asked me to make it for him – he emailed me the recipe twice! – and so I finally said that I would.
Because sometimes I only have half a brain in my head, I didn’t read the recipe before I started making it. I just made sure I had all the ingredients. So there was no prep work involved before I started my 20 minutes of non-stop stirring and whisking. 20 minutes might sound like a long time, but if you are tied to the stove doing nothing, it can be really boring. I mean REALLY boring.
But I did it. I stood there for 20 minutes making the best roux of my life. It came out the color of milk chocolate, and it tasted like a little bit of heaven.
Why is this a big deal?
Because I don’t have a whole lot of confidence in myself when it comes to cooking new or different things. I stick to what I know. I’m not comfortable outside of my box, and as I mentioned, I’m not patient either. This just proved to me that I can try new things in the kitchen. And Jason always tells me: Just try it, if it doesn’t come out right, try again. And if it doesn’t taste good, don’t make it again.
Sometimes, it really is the little things, isn’t it?
But I’m not the only one who has succeeded lately! Quaker Oats, a staple in my kitchen and millions of others across the country, recently announced the addition of Quaker Oatmeal Cookies to their product line! These cookies are YUMMY! They have introduced a line of 5 flavors of soft baked cookies and 4 crunchy cookie flavors.
I recently received boxes of the crunchy cookies to try out, and my family enjoyed them all! They are really crunchy – perfect for dunking in milk – and full of flavor. In each box of cookies, you’ll find 4 cookies in individual packages. While all of them were tasty to eat, my favorite by far were the Mixed Nuts cookie. They were sweet and salty and nutty, with a hint of coconut. I enjoyed them alone and also dunking them in coffee. These are cookies I would hide in the pantry as a treat to myself!
But guess what? The good people over at Quaker are allowing me to share the cookies with you, too! Share with me what you have recently accomplished – big or small – for your chance to win a variety of the Quaker cookie flavors and a $75 Visa gift card! For additional entries, you can like Quaker Oats on Facebook and followed Quaker Oats on Twitter (leave a separate comment for each entry).
Oh, and the rest of the Etouffee recipe? Look for it on Friday!
This giveaway begins on Tuesday, April 3rd and will end on Sunday, April 8th, 2012 at 8:30 pm. One winner with a valid entry will be selected at random using random.org. The winner will be announced on Monday and must respond within 48 hours to claim. Otherwise, another eligible entry will be chosen.
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Quaker. The opinions and text are all mine. And yes, I really loved these cookies!
Do you do battle every night getting your toddlers and preschoolers to go to bed (and stay in bed?) If so, head over and read my Dealing with Bedtime Battles post for your chance to win a prize package that can help you win the battles!