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The Comforting Creole Classics You Should Cook at Home

Try out turkey-stuffed bell peppers and a marinated trout stir fry from NOLA Creole chef Corey Duckworth

The culinary impact of the late “Queen of Creole” Leah Chase is obvious to anyone who has either been to New Orleans or is familiar with the city’s cuisine. From Cajun-Creole and Creole-Italian and even “haute Creole,” the city — and Louisiana at large — have taken the style of cooking in countless creative directions.

One staple of Creole cooking in New Orleans is Sassafras, co-owned by mother-and-son team Sandra Duckworth and Corey Duckworth since 2004. Over the years, Sassafras has become known for Creole soul food dishes like smothered okra, fried catfish and shrimp, and stuffed peppers, with Corey manning the kitchen as chef.

As part of our Eater at Home series, Duckworth is joining Eater’s Instagram Live to give us an in-depth rundown of some of his favorite Creole dishes: stuffed bell peppers and a marinated trout and broccoli stir fry — both of which make use of the “holy trinity” of green bell peppers, yellow onion, and celery. Check out the recipes below for yourself.

Stuffed Back Porch Pepper

Makes 4 servings

1 ¼ pounds cooked ground turkey
½ cup holy trinity*
1 cup lump crabmeat
2 tablespoons chopped scallions
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 pint chicken broth
1 tablespoon Tabasco Red Sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
3 cups bread crumbs, divided
4 green bell peppers, blanched
4 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon oil

* Note: Considered similar to mirepoix in most Louisiana Creole cooking, holy trinity is a blend of yellow onion, green bell peppers, and celery.

In a pan over medium heat add your holy trinity, bay leaf, green onions, and oil. Cook until onions are translucent. Add garlic and crabmeat plus 1 tablespoon of Tabasco Red Sauce and let simmer for another 5 minutes. Add your chicken broth and cooked ground turkey, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook covered for about 7 to 10 minutes so the broth reduces.

Remove the pan from heat and mix in 2 12 cups of bread crumbs to the crab mixture. Then, working one at a time, stuff your blanched bell peppers with about one cup each of the mixture. Top the stuffed peppers with the remaining bread crumbs and 12 to 1 tablespoon each of butter; sprinkle each with paprika. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

Trout and Broccoli Stir Fry

For the trout marinade:
¼ cup Tabasco Red Sauce
½ cup melted butter
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 pund speckled trout

For the stir fry:
2 tablespoons canola oil
½ cup holy trinity
½ pound broccoli florets
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 cup parboiled rice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon house Creole seasoning blend
2 tablespoons Tabasco Green Sauce
8 ounces marinated trout
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan

On a cutting board, slice the fresh speckled trout into 8-ounce servings. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

In a medium bowl add Tabasco Red Sauce, melted butter, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, and lemon juice; mix well. Using a basting brush or your hands marinate the trout with the Tabasco mixture. Transfer trout to a plastic bag and refrigerate for at last 2 hours.

Once marinated, wrap serving in aluminum foil and fold the edges. Broil at 270 degrees for 15 minutes or until cooked medium well.

In a skillet over medium-high heat, add olive oil, the holy trinity, and broccoli. Cook for 5 minutes. Add rice vinegar, Tabasco Green Sauce, garlic, and soy sauce, and stir. Add the rice and cooked trout and stir fry for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Creole seasoning blend and Parmesan cheese. Garnish with fresh scallions and Tabasco Red Sauce. Enjoy!

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