Mardi Gras Corn Creole With Prawns On Parade

Course : Seafoods
Serves: 6
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3 cloves garlic
2 medium onions
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 medium green bell pepper -- chopped
1 1/2 cups corn kernels
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
6 medium tomatoes -- chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried mint
1/2 teaspoon black pepper -- freshly ground
1/8 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 1/2 cups long-grain rice
13 cups water
2 pounds large prawns
1 piece bay leaf
1/2 medium lemon

Preparation / Directions:

Mince 2 of the garlic cloves. Reserve a quarter wedge of 1 onion, and finely chop the rest. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil at medium temperature. Add the minced garlic, chopped onion, green pepper, and 1 cup of the corn kernels. Sauté the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the parsley, tomatoes, wine, sugar, salt, cayenne, Worcestershire, cumin, mint, black pepper, and Tabasco. Mix well to combine. Lower the heat and simmer uncovered for about 45 minutes, or until the Creole thickens. While the Creole is simmering, put the rice in a large, lidded saucepan with 5 cups of water. Add salt to taste, and bring to a boil over a high heat. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the rice is fluffy. Meanwhile, prepare the prawns. Bring the remaining 8 cups of water to a low boil in a large saucepan. Add the reserved quarter onion, the whole garlic clove, and the bay leaf. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add the prawns to the water and simmer about 3 minutes, or until they are pink but not tightly curled. Drain immediately. As soon as the prawns are cool enough to handle, shell and devein them and set aside. When the rice is tender, drain it. In a large bowl, toss the rice with the remaining half cup of corn kernels. Select a large, flamboyant platter. Arrange the corn-studded rice in a decorative ring, leaving a space in the middle large enough to hold the corn Creole. Carefully pour the thickened corn Creole into the center of the ring of rice. Parade the prawns in a circle on top of the rice, and douse them with a mighty squeeze of the lemon. Serve at once. Comments: Bourbon Street bustles year round, but when Mardi Gras season arrives everyone celebrates. The gumbos are richer, the Creole sauces seem more piquant, and the mint juleps flow. Mardi Gras Corn Creole With Prawns On Parade unmasks the flavors that make Cajun cooking an international favorite. For a French Quarter finale, serve a shimmering, sugar-crusted creme brulee for dessert.

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