November 2017
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Chef's Corner: Get Ready to Snap up Some Gator!

Farm-raised Southfresh alligator is healthy and delicious; however you prepare it.

SouthFresh brand alligator is a farm-raised, grain-fed alligator from Louisiana. It is hand processed and triple tenderized for a great quality protein with wonderful texture. Our alligator is all-white meat and raised with sustainability in mind. Alligator is considered a healthy meat, as it is very low in fat while being high in protein. It can be grilled, fried, sautéed, blackened or smoked, and, yes, a lot of folks say it tastes like chicken!

FRIED ALLIGATOR BITES

Fried Alligator Bites

 

Yield: 4 (4-ounce) servings

1 pound SouthFresh alligator meat
8 ounces fish fry (such as Zatarans)
Oil, for frying
6 ounces horseradish sauce (recipe included)

In a skillet, heat oil to 350°. Prepare alligator by cutting into 1- to 1½-inch pieces. In a gallon zip bag, place meat and fish fry. Shake well to coat. Remove from bag and dust off excess breading. A few pieces at a time, place in hot oil. Fry until golden brown and floating, about 3 minutes. Drain on paper towel-lined plate.

 

HORSERADISH SAUCE

Yield: 6 ounces

4 ounces mayonnaise
2 ounces prepared horseradish
Juice 1 lemon
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a bowl, combine all. Stir well.

 

Fried Alligator Po Boy

 

FRIED ALLIGATOR PO BOY

Yield: 4 sandwiches

1 loaf French bread, cut into four equal portions and split
2 ounces mayonnaise (tartar, horseradish, etc. are great, too!)
6 ounces lettuce, shredded
2 tomatoes, sliced
4 ounces dill pickle
Sliced red onion, to taste
1 recipe fried SouthFresh alligator

On baking sheet, place French bread. Toast in oven. Remove and coat with your favorite sauce. Layer other ingredients, topping with hot, fried alligator.

 

BLACKENED ALLIGATOR QUESADILLAS

Blackened Alligator Quesadillas

 

Yield: 4 (8-inch) servings

1 pound SouthFresh alligator
3 ounces blackening spice (such as Blackened Redfish Magic)
1 each red, yellow and green bell pepper, sliced thin
4 ounces red onion, sliced thin
1 jalapeño, diced, if desired (removing membrane and seeds takes away most of the heat)
8 (8-inch) flour tortillas
8 ounces shredded pepper jack or cheddar/jack cheese, divided
Pan spray or butter, for toasting

Cut alligator into 1- to 2-inch pieces. In zip bag, put blackening spice. Add alligator pieces. Shake to coat well. In a hot pan, place a few pieces at a time. Sear until outside has a nice crust and interior is cooked through, roughly 2 minutes per side. Remove from pan and place on paper towel-lined plate. Reserve. Sear all pieces. To pan, add onion and peppers. Cook until softened, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan. On 4 plates, assemble quesadillas. Place a tortilla on each plate. Reserve half of cheese. On each tortilla, equally layer half of cheese, peppers and onions and alligator. Finish with remaining cheese. Place a tortilla on top of each. In buttered pan or griddle on a medium low heat, toast each until golden brown on the outside and cheese is melted, around 4 minutes.

 

ALLIGATOR KABOBS

Yield: 6 (6-inch) skewers (approximately, you can bulk up veggies to stretch it)

1 pound SouthFresh alligator, cut into 1½-inch pieces
1 pound favorite veggies (peppers, onions, squash, tomatoes, mushrooms, etc.), cut into 1½-inch pieces
6-8 skewers (if wooden, soak in water for at least an hour)
8 ounces marinade (recipe included)

In a large dish or pan, place alternately skewered alligator and veggies. When complete, pour marinade over skewers. Place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour, not over 24 hours. When ready to cook, remove kabobs and let them come to room temperature. Heat broiler to 425° or grill to medium-high heat. Cook for approximately 10 minutes, until alligator is cooked through.

 

KABOB MARINADE

Yield: 8 ounces

4 ounces olive oil
2 lemons, juice and zest
1 ounce (each) fresh herbs (or 1 Tablespoon total dry herbs) (basil, thyme, oregano, etc.)
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
1Tablespoon honey

In bowl, put all ingredients. Combine well.

 

Brian Taylor CEC, CCE is the corporate executive chef for SouthFresh Farms.