Originally Posted by Wine & Swine
I am down in Florida consulting as corp. chef with a seafood company and need to do a luncheon for 15 or so tomorrow utilizing the company products to both show off my skills and to show some new ideas on using their products. I have been kicking around a few ideas/themes and wanted to see if you guys had any other suggestions. The products for tomorrow are, pasturized crab (their main product), both frozen and canned pasturized lobster meat, frozen grouper fillets, frozen mahi mahi fillets and frozen shrimp. There are quite a few constraints; 1. I have to serve the exec. board first (5 ppl in a board room setting) at 12n, 2. the owner of the company is allergic to shellfish so I have to be able to somewhat accomodate/appease him w/o gearing everything around him, 3. Have to serve the other 10-15 office staff after in a more casual form after the meeting, 4. I am not really that used to working with some of these products (only the canned crab and shrimp) as I have always done real high end stuff with only fresh ingredients. Hee is what I a thinking, going with a Southern/New Orleans thing;
Fried green tomatoes with a creamy jalapeno spiked crab, fennel and bell pepper slaw (can just do a plain slaw for the boss)
Citrus/chile marinated grilled organic shrimp over a salad of Texas caviar, arugula and a roasted lemon vinaigrette (can leave off the shrimp maybe do some crispy prosciutto or bacon)
Next (this is the one I am really stuck on as I never really worked with frozen bagged lobster meat (do not think fresh lobster it is very different in texture and salinity)
Lobster Gumbo with a Lobster Hush Puppy as Garnish (no way to change this one for shellfish friendly)
Blackened Grouper served over Andouille and Chicken Jambalaya with a spicy Creole Tomato Sauce
I skipped the mahi because I started feeling it was already too much stuff and I do not want to over do it but if anyone has any ideas I would love to hear them.
Thanks in advance
It really all sounds fantastic, and good way to highlight the corporations products. My only thought is on the one you werr not sure of--the lobster gumbo. I know Gumbo and Jambalaya are two different things, but setting them up one after the other might be a little too cajun in your face. Additionally it looks like you mean to use the gumbo as your soup course. The gumbos I make are quite hearty and I would be reluctant to serve them as a soup course. On the other hand if your gumbos are light and do not contain a lot of chicken, it is fine as a soup before an entree, just depends on the style. I'm sort of thinking out loud here, but I am thinking perhaps a light lobster bisque or even ceviche, with enough cajun spice to let everyone you haven't left New Orleans. If you went the ceviche route you could also throw in the mahi mahi with it as well. I know ceviche isn't a soup per se, but you can turn in in that direction by manipulating the texture. Just something to provide more of a contrast to to what I think of as a bold entree. Just a thought. Again if you gumbo is light and soupy, I think it is fine, my gumbos are more like a stew and I use dark roux.
Sounds like it will be a great meal! Good luck!