Welcome to JohnMichaels Pub's Blog

Welcome. I moved to Nashville in 2001, and have be blessed to make some wonderful friends. After moving from a house in Florida, to an apartment in Nashville, I missed being able to entertain groups of friends simply due to lack of space. When I finally decided to make Nashville my home and buy a house here, I wanted a space that friends to gather and socialize in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The basement in my new house, which opens into the back yard made the perfect space, so JohnMichael's Pub was born. I have made a couple of trips to Ireland since moving to Nashville and loved the atmosphere of the pubs there. So I made my pub to resemble an Irish style pub to give the atmosphere of a local community pubs in Ireland, but of course it is not a true "Pub" (Public house) since it private place for my friends to gather. I plan to use this blog to post thoughts, ideas, recipes and a variety of other things related to my pub and the parties held there. If you see anything here that interests you, feel free to email me. I have a great group of friends that is very diverse, but I am always open to making new friends.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Crawfish and harvest fest

The crawfish boil went well. I think everyone had a great time. Friends, food and beer, Here is a pic of me eating a crawfish. I gave a brief demo on how to suck heads and pinch tails when the first batch came out of the pot. The red beans (receipe in prior post) were a big hit also, as was the gator tail.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

LUGHNASADH 2007-first fruits harvest festival and Crawfish boil

The big crawfish boil is this Sunday in in the Garden Avalon (AKA my back yard). I am very excited. The mudbugs will arrive tommorow from Natchitoches, Louisiana and the menu is set.
I thought as a preview to the boil, I would post my recipe for Red Beans.
The menu is as follows:
Crawfish, Corn on the Cob & red skin taters and onions, Andouille sausage, Red Beans & Rice, and a Three Cheese Lasagna for those who just can't do crawfish, etc...I also have a limited quantity of gator bites coming from Natchitoches for those who would like to give it a try,and some watermelon to cool it all down. Of course there will also be plenty of beer and other beverages.

My Red bean recipe is as follows:

2 pound red kidney beans, dry 1 large onion, chopped 1 bell pepper, chopped 3 ribs celery, chopped garlic minced (4 o4 5 cloves)
2-3 bay leaves
1 TBL spoon fresh or dry thyme
1-2 Tbl spoons Tabasco or Louisiana hot sauce
1-2 Tbl spoons Louisiana Cajun Seasoning or Tony Chachere's Seasoning or Zatarain’s Creole Seasoning
A few dashes of Worcestershire sauce
For extra flavor:
An Andouille sausage or two
4 oz of smoked ham hock or bacon
Vegetarian alternative:
A few slices of Morningstar farms bacon strips for the smoky flavor

Soak the beans overnight. Drain and use fresh water. Bring the beans to a rolling boil. Make sure the beans are always covered by water. Boil the beans for about 45 - 60 minutes, until the beans are tender but not falling apart. Drain. (My alternative is to cook them in a presser cooker for 35 minutes after it begins to jiggle.)

While the beans are boiling, finely chop and sauté the Trinity (onions, celery, bell pepper) in a small amount of olive oil until the onions turn clear. Add the garlic and sauté for 2 or 3 minutes more stirring occasionally. After the beans are boiled, add the sautéed mixture to the beans, then add the meats or meat alternatives and other spices listed (to taste)

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer. Cook for 2-3 hours until it gets creamy. Adjust seasonings as it cooks. Stir occasionally to prevent burning or sticking to the bottom of the pot. If you have the option to cook the beans a day or two ahead of time, then refrigerate and heat up later, the flavor will be better. You may need to add a little water when you reheat. Some people like a little vinegar in there beans. You can use pepper vinegar, pickled onions, or just plain white vinegar to taste.

---- Serve over rice-----