Beyond Your Radio Article done by contributor and Professional Chef, Jeff Johnson, where he takes an album and creates three courses with recipe, instructions, and pictures. Sometimes it’s his choice. Sometimes it’s your choice.

Music Bites Rhythm of the Saints by Paul Simon

Paul Simon and I have had a torrent love affair since I first heard him with the infamous Garfunkel.  His 50 plus years of performing has taken him down many roads.  From pop to soft rock, ballads and southern funk.  He always tried to add an international flair in his songs and style.  This particular album, Rhythm of the Saints from 1990 was hand picked by the creator of Beyond You Radio, Mark Kuligowsk to challenge me.  Little did he know that I love this album with its catchy style and upbeat rhythm that has both African, southern and Latin overtones.  From the spunky “Obvious Child” to the middle’s “Further to Fly” and “Born at the Right Time” to closing title track, the album is a percussive masterpiece along with timely, affectionate and compassionate lyrics that sway magically and flawlessly throughout Simon’s soundscape.  The menu is exactly like that, an upbeat taste with African, southern and Latin vibes. A Perfect meal for a lazy summer evening!  Enjoy this with a fine IPA and you and Paul will be having a mighty fine time!

Chef Jeff [Jeffry Johnson]

 

 

SOUTHERN SHRIMP SALAD

Ingredients

  • 1 lb cooked large Shrimp
  • 2 stalks celery diced
  • 1/4 cup Onion finely diced
  • 1 medium avocado diced
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 red Jalapeño minced
  • Pinch Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 tsp red Chili flakes
  • 1 tsp Tabasco

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients above in large bowl
  • Stir to combine well
  • Refrigerate 2-3 hours
  • Serve on a bed of lettuce

AFRICAN CHICKEN PEANUT STEW

Ingredients Sauce

  • 1 – 56 oz canned whole tomatoes ½ cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions for Sauce

  • Combine all the above in blender, whirl at high speed till very smooth

Ingredients for Chicken Base

  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 lb diced chicken breast
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes peeled and diced into cubes
  • 2 cups frozen spinach thawed and wrong out,

Instructions

  • Add oil and onions to large fry pan cook till translucent
  • Add garlic and ginger
  • Continue to cook 2-3 minutes
  • Add peanut butter + stock
  • Simmer for 10 minutes
  • Add chicken simmer for 5 minutes.

Finalizing to Slow Cooker

  • In a large 5-7 qt slow cooker combine sauce and chicken mixture
  • Stir and add spinach and sweet potatoes
  • Set slow cooker for 6 hours and low heat
  • Cook 3 hours stir
  • Cook another 3 hours
  • Serve over Rice

 

SAINTLY CRANBERRY CHEESECAKE BARS

Ingredients Cheesecake Filling

  • 16 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • small pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • ¾ c sugar
  • ¼ c sour cream

Instructions Cheesecake Filling

  • In mixing bowl with electric mixer beat cream cheese and sugar till light and fluffy
  • Add eggs one at a time till well combined
  • Under low speed add sour cream, corn starch, salt and vanilla

Ingredients for Cranberry Sauce

  • 2 cups fresh frozen cranberries
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Instructions for Cranberry Sauce

  • Heat a 2qt pan over medium heat
  • Add orange juice, sugar, cinnamon and salt
  • Cook till cranberry’s are soft and mushy and fairly thick

Ingredients for Graham Cracker Crust

  • 1 1/2 cups Crushed Graham Crackers
  • 5 tbsp butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions for Graham Cracker Crust

  • Place all of the above in a food processor till well combined
  • Spray a 9 x 13 glass pan with non stick spray
  • Dump in cracker mixture
  • With your hands pat out mixture till a thin uniform crust is formed.
  • Bake at 325 for 10 min
  • Pull out of oven and cool

Assembly Instructions

  • Pour cheesecake mixture into glass pan over crust
  • Using a spatula spread mixture evenly crust
  • Dollop 1/2 of cranberry mixture over filling and using a small knife swirl the cranberry into cheesecake
  • Dollop the rest over the cheesecake – don’t stir in
  • Bake at 300 approx 40 minutes
  • Allow to cool
  • Refrigerator at least 4-6 hours
  • Cut in squares and serve

Music Bites Eat A Peach by The Allman Brothers Band

In the mid Seventies I worked in a famous kitchen in New Orleans.  The Executive Sous Chef was in love The Allman Brothers Band.  We would listen to the Allman Brothers Band 8 hours a day!  Certain songs over and over.  That being said, this album produced one of my favorite songs of all time!  “Mountain Jam” is a stellar rock instrumental.  It is twenty-eight minutes of a grateful dead-ish jam, really focusing on the group’s strong points.  It’s playful, but not too intense, like some space jams tend to be.  When you add “Melissa,” one of their few top forty radio hits, “Trouble No More,” and “Blue Sky” you have a high energy southern rock album!  Arguably their best.  This Album I use regularly to reduce depression.  Music Bites Eat A Peach by The Allman Brothers Band!
This menu is southern based and is very New Orleans influenced.  The beverage choice here is a nice Italian Chianti.
Enjoy the menu!  Bon appetite!

Southern Cheesy Biscuits

Ingredients [makes 12 biscuits]

  • 3 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Pepper Flakes
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/2 cup cold Butter
  • 1/2 cup milk

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients except milk and butter.
  • Blend butter in with pastry blender till fine crumb
  • Slowly add milk till dough just comes together.
  • Scoop out golf ball size of dough on to greased baking sheets
  • Bake 450 for 18-20 minutes

 

New Orleans Southern Chili

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground Beef
  • 1 lb ground Pork
  • 1/2 lb Andouille sausage – 1” slices
  • 2 Onions- Finely Chopped
  • 1 Green Pepper – Finely Chopped
  • 1 Red Pepper – Finely Chopped
  • 3 cloves of Garlic – Minced
  • 2 cans diced Tomatoes
  • 1 small can Tomato Paste
  • 1 bunch cilantro – Chopped Fine
  • 1 bunch Parsley – Chopped fine
  • 3 tablespoons Chili Power
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon pepper

Instructions

Beyond Your Radio Music Bites - New Orleans Southern Chili

  • Sauté onions and garlic in a large Dutch oven
  • When translucent, add peppers cook for 5 minutes
  • Add pork and beef till brown
  • Add andouille and cook for 5 more minutes
  • Add the rest of the ingredients, stir well and simmer covers for 45 minutes.
  • Serve over Rice

 

Peach & Pepper Cobbler

Ingredients – Filling

  • 3 cans peach Halves-Drained
  • 2 tablespoons Jalapeños Minced
  • 1/4 cup diced Walnuts
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup sugar granulated

Ingredients – Topping

  • 3/4 cup butter soften
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Szechwan peppers- ground

Instructions

  • TOPPING:  Mix together all ingredients by hands until it resembles 1/4 inch crumbs
  • FILLING:
    • Lay peaches cut side down on a greased 9 x 13 pan
    • Sprinkle with chopped Jalapeños and Walnuts
    • Mix together all the rest of ingredients in a bowl with a whisk.
    • Pour on top of peaches (make sure peaches are completely coated)
    • Sprinkle topping evenly over top of cobbler
    • Bake 375 for 30 minutes
    • Serve warm with Ice Cream

Music Bites In Case You’re In Love from Sonny & Cher

I was searching my memory the other day for the very first album I listened to completely. When you’re joining Beyond Your Radio as a contributor and panelist, and creating Music Bites, I realize it’s game on — which I love!  My sister got this record for her 15th birthday, Sonny & Cher “In Case You’re In Love,” and I really enjoyed it!  I was 16 and my musical taste varied from The Rolling Stones to The Beatles and some pop rock of the times.

This Sonny & Cher album is a classic soft pop rock compilation. It contains their most popular hits along with quite a few cover tunes. A lot of the songs are recognizable, but they throw in a few “where did that come from songs.”  This album displays Cher’s unique ability to sing in a variety of styles. And, as for Sonny, his kind of crusty childish style seems to pair well with Cher’s melodic voice.

The menu I decided to go with for “In Case You’re In Love” from Sonny & Cher are classic dishes conceived in the 60’s with a twist.  The album and menu goes well with a semi-dry Sauvignon Blanc.  Enjoy the menu!  Bon appetite!

Cheese Fondue Asparagus Toasties

Ingredients

  • 20 stalks fresh Asparagus
  • 1/2 pound shredded Sharp Cheddar
  • 8 oz. Heavy Cream
  • 1/4 tsp. dried Tarragon
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • White Wine
  • Sour Dough Bread
  • Butter for Toast
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Directions

Make roux, using butter and flour mixed together in a small sauce pan.  Whisk continually under medium heat until light golden color.  Add the cream and approximately a 1/2 cup of white wine.  Keep whisking until the mixture has the consistency of pancake batter.  Add the cheese slowly (not all at once) and mix thoroughly.  The mixture should become thick but pourable.  Remove from burner and let sit on the back of stove covered.

Meanwhile in a 10″ fry pan add the Asparagus and 1/2 cup white wine and simmer for 6-8 minutes till tender.  Allow to cool while your making the next part – the toast.

Butter 4 pieces of sour dough bread.  Put under a broiler until light brown.  Remove toast to plates.

Put two tablespoons of the fondue (resting on the back of the stove) onto each piece of toast and top with 5 Asparagus each.  Divide the rest of what’s left of the fondue to each of the pieces of toast over-top the Asparagus.  Sprinkle Tarragon and serve.

American Goulash

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 2 Yellow Onions, chopped
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 cups Beef Stock
  • 29 ounces Tomato Sauce
  • 29 ounces Diced Tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp. Worcester Sauce
  • 1 tsp. Dried Oregano
  • 1 tsp. Dried Basil
  • 1 tsp. Kosher Salt
  • 2 tbsp. Paprika
  • 8 oz. Elbow Macaroni, cooked al dente
  • Salt and Pepper

Directions

In a large Dutch Oven, sauteed onions and garlic until translucent under medium high.
Add peppers and saute another 7 minutes.  Add ground beef and cook until brown.
Add the remaining ingredients except the pasta (of course), stir evenly, and cook with cover on for 45 minutes on [low].
Add the cooked al dente pasta and cook for 10 minutes more and serve!

 

 

 

Festive Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 box Yellow Cake Mix
  • 1 cup Orange Juice
  • 1/4 cup Grenadine
  • 1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1/4 Walnuts, chopped
  • 1 can sliced Pineapple
  • 3 Eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • Butter

Directions

Butter a 9-inch cake pan.
Evenly spread brown sugar in bottom of the cake pan.
Put the Pineapple slices in the cake pan in a single layer.

Put cake mix in a bowl, add the juices, the eggs and oil and whisk for two minutes.
Add the walnuts and stir for 30 seconds.
Carefully pour the batter on the top of the Pineapple layers in the cake pan.

Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool 5 minutes.  Put a serving plate on top of the cake pan and flip over.  If it doesn’t release tap the cake pan with a spoon until it does.  Allow it to continue to cool for 45 minutes and then you can serve!