www.whyville.net Sep 5, 2007 Weekly Issue

Whyville Columnist

Cooking up a Storm: All About Emeril

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Emeril Lagasse is a pretty cool guy. He is a talented chef, with a show and numerous restaurants. But what do you know about him?

Emeril grew up in a small town in Massachusetts, and first learned about cooking from his mother. You may be surprised to know that he was accepted at the New England Conservatory of Music. But, he turned it down, and instead went to Johnson and Wales University. It is this Emeril, the one that followed his dream of becoming a chef, the owner of ten restaurants, that we know today.

Speaking of his restaurants, I am lucky enough to have been to one! Emeril's Tchoup Chop, is located at Universal. And let me tell you, those were the best potstickers I ever ate. Wondering if he has one near you? Here's the list:

New Orleans

Emeril's Restaurant
NOLA Restaurant
Emeril's Delmonico

Las Vegas

Emeril's New Orleans Fish House
Delmonico Steakhouse


Emeril's Orlando
Emeril's Tchoup Chop


Emeril's Atlanta


Emeril's Miami Beach

Gulfport, Mississippi

Emeril's Gulf Coast Fish House

Emeril has his own show too! Emeril Live is a cooking show that takes place in front of a live audience, and is always interesting! If you want to watch it too, check Food Network's website for listings.

This chef also has a charity! The Emeril Lagasse Foundation, or ELF, is great! Here's what the website has to say about their mission:

The Emeril Lagasse Foundation seeks to inspire, mentor and enable all young people, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to realize their full potential as productive and creative individuals. The foundation supports and encourages programs creating developmental and educational opportunities for children within communities where Emeril's restaurants operate.

If you'd like to check this charity out, visit www.emeril.org

All this chatter is probably make you hungry, right? As usual, here is your recipe, which I found on his website.

Emeril's Chicken Pot Pie
- Note: This is just the filling. To save time, do it my way! Use a premade crust! You can find a package in the frozen aisle of your grocery store.

Ingredients needed:

* 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
* 1 cup chopped yellow onions
* 1/2 cup chopped celery
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
* 6 tablespoons bleached all-purpose flour
* 2 cups chicken broth (try Campbells or Swanson)
* 1 cup half-and-half
* 2 cups peeled and diced Idaho potatoes, cooked in boiling salted water until tender, 6 to 8 minutes
* 1 cup diced carrots, cooked in boiling salted water until tender, 4 to 5 minutes
* 1 cup sweet young peas, fresh or frozen (defrost if frozen)
* 2 cups shredded cooked chicken, white and dark meat
* 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parley leaves

Preheat the oven to 400?F. Grease a 9 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan.

Heat the butter in a large saut? pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and celery, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes to make a blond roux. Stir in the chicken stock and bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the sauce begins to thicken, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in the half-and-half and continue to cook for another 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the potatoes, carrots, peas, chicken, and parsley, season with salt and pepper, and mix well.

Put your pie crust in a baking pan. Pour the filling into the prepared pan. Place the second crust on top of the filling. Carefully tuck the overlapping crusts into the pan, forming a thick edge. Crimp the edges, cut vents in the top crust, and place on a baking sheet. Bake until the crust is golden brown and crusty, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing to serve.

Crimping is basically sealing the crust, while at the same time making it pretty! Just take a fork, and press the edges. The end result is a pleasing pattern!

Well, my oven just finished making this delightful pie!

Off to go eat it,


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