Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gather Around the Table for Our Third Annual Coronado Jubilee

For the third year in a row, we've topped off our Coronado Concerts in the Park Culinary-themed picnics with a Southern Jubilee Seafood Boil. Our annual tradition started back in 2009, when Carmen enlightened us about Jubilee, a natural phenomenon that occurs from time to time, during the warm summer months, on the shores of Mobile Bay, Alabama. During Jubilee, blue crabs, shrimp and fish swim swarm toward the shore in a desperate search for more oxygen-rich water. People rush down to the water with washtubs, gigs, and nets, to gather a bountiful harvest of seafood. Jubilees cannot be predicted with certainty, and remain a mysterious and welcome gift from nature.

During his Navy days, John used to treat the BUDS instructors to seafood boils on the "deep dive" days. He kept his big boiling pot and burner, hotel pans, and expertise, and has thus acquired the chef position for our Jubilees. Chef John also provided Mason jars for our adult beverages.

Back by popular demand - Nina's compound butters and fresh baguettes. It was so hard to choose a favorite between Lemon-Dill, Fig-Blue Cheese, Roasted Garlic-Asiago, and Sweet Corn-Avocado-Lime. She even made her own butter!

In addition to the shellfish and andouille sausage, we like throwing in artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, corn, purple potatoes, cippolini onions, baby carrots, okra, and whole heads of garlic. I made a double batch of John Besh's Remoulade for our dipping sauce. We won't talk about the disastrous dessert I attempted - it's still too painful. Thankfully, Sandra saved us with her Cherries Jubilee.

Perfectly tender, seasoned artichokes

Head-on Shrimp

Mussels, Clams, and Crawfish hiding underneath

All that goodness lurking within

Last batch coming out of the strainer

John and Kai about to pour our feast onto the table

Beautiful, vivid colors

Carmen's Cornbread

Jubilee, a celebration of food and friends

This is, by far, the ultimate picnic in the park or party for your backyard. You can find our ingredients and instructions for Jubilee in last year's post, here, along with recipes/links for desserts and sides, and a few more recipes/links, here. Also, search key words "John Besh" or "southern" in the blog search feature on the sidebar, and you'll likely find additional recipes!

Carmen's Cornbread
(Double if using a large cast iron skillet)


2 cups Martha White self-rising cornmeal mix (Or, use Bob's Red Mill Corn Flour and add 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt - I've made it both ways and they're both a little different, but just as good)
1 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup of thick European sour cream (or thick European yogurt like Brown Cow, or any combination of the two)
1 cup of frozen corn
3 green onions, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 jalapenos, finely chopped
1 4-ounce can chopped green chiles, drained
2 large eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons of peanut oil


Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the ingredients except the peanut oil. Mix until well combined.

Grease a medium-sized iron skillet with the peanut oil and heat on HIGH until the oil is hot but not smoking.

Pour the batter into the skillet. Remove from the stove, place the skillet in the oven, and bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown. To test if it's done, stab it in the center with a wooden skewer - if it comes out clean, it's done. Remove the skillet from the oven and allow it to cool for about twenty minutes. To serve, put the whole skillet on the table or cut the bread into wedges or squares and place on a serving platter. If you're an authentic hillbilly, put a chunk of it in a glass, pour buttermilk over it, and eat it with a spoon.


Eva @kitcheninspirations.wordpress.com said...

What an incredible feast!

Pacheco Patty said...

Gorgeous feast! Thanks for the cornbread recipe too;-)
I went back and checked out your cookie crunch chicken, I was afraid I wouldn't like it so I passed on that recipe! Looks like you're having a lot of fun down your way and you'll get to those madeleines some day;-)