All this week, this blog has focused on Gulf Coast classic recipes, including shrimp boat spaghetti and gumbo.
All of those dishes have similarities in that the recipes start with a combination of chopped, sautéed vegetables, which are the base of countless recipes, including French, Italian and Creole.
Don't skimp on that step. Combine onions, bell peppers, carrots, celery and garlic, season aggressively and lovingly sauté in lots of oil until they are tender and fragrant.
The next step is to add stock, made with chicken, beef or even tomato, and long simmer all the ingredients together. Add fresh or dried herbs, wine or even pasta water, and you will be getting close to something really good.
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If you are using beef, it will long simmer in the sauce, chicken, not so long and seafood, just a brief swim at the very end. Those are three simple steps that go into making so many recipes so good. Don't be in a hurry, and buy the best ingredients you can afford.