Skip to main content

A Foodie's Little Luxury

Lately I have been rethinking my concept of luxury. Food and water are becoming luxuries in many places including parts of the U.S. And for many foodies, luxury is being defined in simplicity. Locally grown organic produce, dairy products, meats and fish are a luxury to many, and traditional local recipes are sought out to showcase them.
Today I made a traditional compound butter. If you are not using compound butters you really are missing out on one of lifes' little pleasures. Great restaurants keep them on hand and with good reason. They can save time when adding flavor to a special dish or sauce and can give simple things a luxury upgrade. Think salted caramel compound butter on popcorn..or go exotic with smoked pineapple..yum!

The flavor combinations are only limited by your imagination.

I made a sundried tomato cilantro lime compound butter and try to always have some on hand as it is my personal favorite It works well with so many of the southern type dishes I love to make. I had it for lunch on crusty french bread with goat cheese and wine. That same bread could have been buttered and topped with grilled shrimp, or the compound butter can be melted and used as a dipping butter for crawfish, shrimp and lobster.

It takes only minutes to make and here is all you have to do,
you will need-
2 sticks softened butter
4 oz. sun dried tomatoes
zest of one lime
1 tbs dried cilantro or 2 tbs fresh 

Chop the sundried tomato into pieces about one quarter inch, then add all the ingredients, mix, and lay on a sheet of wax paper. Roll up in the wax paper to form a log, twist the ends, put in the fridge to set up and you are all done!

It is so easy you might want to try one of these other favorites.

Smoked Pineapple
2 sticks softened butter
1/2 cup canned pineapple, drained and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
This is great on all seafood, popcorn, and gives baked potato some real zip especially when served with a big salad.

Mustard and Chives
2 sticks softened butter
8 tbs fresh chives finely chopped
2 tsp lemon zest
1/2 tsp ground pepper
4 tbs Dijon mustard
pinch of salt.
Another great seafood butter, smear it on fish sandwiches. It is even better on vegetables!

Butter freezes well so you can always make up a big batch.

How many flavor combinations can you come up with?


Popular posts from this blog

Antique Wardian Cases

When I moved into my present city apartment, a mere 680 square feet,  Things had to serve a purpose. No longer could this antique wardian case hold trinkets for display, it had to be functional. So I gave up a rather large chunk of my micro kitchen to grow fresh herbs. I figure it is a fair trade off. I have a full spectrum vita light shining on the plants and they seem to do quite well in there. I adore wardian cases, terrariums and the like. They were a fixture in the Palace of Versailles like the one above, and later the Victorians made great use of them when it was discovered that they could successfully transport rare species of plants home from  around the globe. I thought I would share some pinned photos of various styles.. Imitation cases are usually zinc and plexiglass ,like this one I spotted at a local market. You can tell the age of a real one by the thickness and color of the glass.The glass will most often be 1/4 inch to a 1/2 inch. They are always quite

Southern Bacon and Crawfish Cornbread Dressing

Imagine you are dining outside at Blake Shelton's house this Thanksgiving and deep frying some big turkeys. A crawfish dressing would probably be on the menu. Deep fried turkeys and outdoor dining on Thanksgiving day is very popular in the South. And while people don't wild catch crawfish like they did a century ago, crawfish are always popular on the menu. Here I have  paired it with bacon, corn, mirepoix,and jalapenos to give you a dressing with real local flavor. Here is what you need: 5 cups crumbled cornbread 1 1/2 lbs  boiled crawfish tails ( frozen is fine) 10 ounces bacon, cooked and coarsely crumbled 12 ounces yellow corn 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion 1/1/2 cups chopped celery 1/1/2 cups green red and orange bell pepper 1 jalapeno ( optional) 2 eggs beaten 2 cups chicken stock salt, thyme, and sage to taste. Fry your bacon until it is ready to crumble, remove from pan and set aside. Saute the mirepoix, (onions ,peppers and celery) corn and jalap

How to Restore Old Brass Without Losing Patina

Brass is really trendy right now. Much of the home decor brass commercially available is cheaply made and will not retain it's beauty long. But brass made in the first quarter of the 20th century and earlier, develops an exquisite patina. Assuming of course that it has had reasonable care throughout it's long life. Sometimes, a good piece of brass will have just a tiny bit of verdigris, that is the crusty blue green stuff caused by oxidation and tells you corrosion is setting in. I see this a lot on furniture with brass mounts, lamps, chandeliers and light fixtures. Most brass tutorials give directions only on bringing brass back to it's super bright finish. Many antique dealers restore brass to it's bright finish, removing the patina and then apply a commercial solution to darken it again. I can always spot those. They never look quite right. There are some pieces that devalue when you remove the patina.  Natural patina enhances the beauty of a piece, like this cl