Good morning, my friends. Rose from Simple Everyday Living, http://simpleeverydayliving.blogspot.com/, asked me for the recipe for my Cajun Irish stew I built last Monday morning.
Rose, the simple fact is I seldom use a given recipe for this stew as I've been making it for well over thirty years. Guess you could say I just kinda throw the sucker together. It takes a bit of time since I almost always make a Roux when cooking stews. I love Cajun and Creole cooking methods. So, with that said, let's get 'er done.
Now, please understand I will not give set amounts, I cook by feel unless I'm using a recipe for a dish new to me.
Take a good cast iron pot, a large one. I favor Le Cresuet, but any good cast iron pot or heavy stainless steel (if the pot can't inflect bodily damage throw it away) will work. Add about two tablespoons of bacon grease and set the flame to medium high.
I use about a three pound pork roast but beef will suffice. Season to taste, and I mean season. I like to sprinkle with Cajun seasoning, salt and pepper. Any brand name will work.
Then coat with flour, and brown all surfaces of the roast. A good pecan brown, and don't forget the ends. Set aside to rest.
In the drippings of the pot add four or five tablespoons of the flour you used to coat the roast, watch your heat and adjust as necessary. Stir the Roux continually until it reaches the color of a light chocolate or a pecan, the deeper the color, the better the flavor. WATCH the heat, do not burn the Roux. Remember, stir....
A good heat resistant spatula works best for this operation.
Click this link for professional instructions on making a great Roux. http://www.deepsouthdish.com/
Take two large onions (I use Georgia sweet onions) and cut fine, add three to four large cloves of garlic, and put the onions and garlic into the Roux, when it's reached the color you prefer, stir until soft.
Our next step involves stock, your choice, but I prefer chicken stock. Slowly, while stirring the Roux and onion mixture, pour small amounts of stock into the pot....stir, stir, stir. It will thicken. (And Rose, I know you know how to do all this. Just trying to help the novices.)
When the Roux mixture has reached a little boil, reduce heat and add the following in no special order.
The pork roast, keep it whole for now.
2-3 lbs of little red potatoes
2 38oz (or 34, forget what size they come in) cans of tomatoes, crushed.
Chopped carrots, any amount you prefer, just watch the level of the pot.
I like my stews to simmer for at least six (6) hours. I have a gas range so I just add a simmer plate beneath. Allow the stew to just form tiny bubbles, a long slow simmer. Near the end, take a utensil and gently separate the pork roast into three or four sections, adjust seasonings to your taste. This stew is good served over rice, but I like it best served in a bowl with some classic Southern Corn Bread.
As you can see I'm not a food writer. I'm sure the sweet lady at http://bywayofthebay.blogspot.com/, written by The Kitchen Witch can treat this recipe much better than I. By the way, try her site. This sweet lady can cook.
Hope this helped, Rose. Enjoy