Chilled Strawberry Bisque (Carnival Cruise Lines)

CHILLED STRAWBERRY BISQUE
CHILLED STRAWBERRY BISQUE

This is a refreshing chilled soup/bisque that tastes more like ice cream than a soup! It’s sweet, creamy and delicious! Great for those hot cruise days when you just want something refreshing before dinner. When the staff serves you they put some fresh strawberries in the middle of the soup bowl and pour the soup tableside in front of you. So very elegant and fun at the same time! (the pics I found online because of course I forgot to photograph my own when I had it last time, so thank you to those online who did post pics!)

This recipe comes from Carnival’s Cookbook “Carnival Creations” that I got over 20 years ago. Amazing cookbook. The recipe is super easy to make too!

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups frozen strawberries
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • sugar to taste

Directions:

Place all ingredients into a blender. Blend on high until smooth. Add sugar to taste.

Chill overnight.

Serve in chilled soup cups or shallow bowls.

Serves 6

 

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Escargot Bourgignonne

Full disclosure, this blog post appeared on my other site What’s Cooking at the Genua’s? almost 8 years ago! I’ve updated the copy a bit but it’s still the same delicious recipe.

Escargot Bourgignonne

 

Cruises are a wonderful thing. In the last 27 years I’ve been on 19 (20 this January 2019), so far. Most (12, soon to be 13) of them on Carnival Cruise Lines. My husband John and I take cruise vacations over all others for the most part. Sure we used to go up to my family’s summer place in Maine and we just fell in love with Hawaii but that’s different. Cruises are wonderful. You get treated like royalty. No making your beds or cleaning your room! It’s wonderful. Someone cooks for you 24/7 and cleans up! Gotta love that! But one of the best things about cruising is that you get to try all kinds of food that you would normally not have. Escargot for instance. I had them on my very first cruise and I’ve been hooked ever since! I don’t care that they are really fancy slugs. It’s my way of payback for all damage slugs have done to my gardens over the years!

Anyway, I’ve had them in many different styles. This version is pretty popular. On the cruise ships you get them this way or even covered in cheese! Cheese, garlic, wine, oil…All very tasty! Every cruise we take we always look forward to the night we get to eat snails! I would eat them more if they served them more. This recipe is actually from Carnival Cruise Lines. I bought their cookbook on my 2nd cruise, which was actually my first Carnival Cruise. A few years back there was a shortage of the little buggers because of weather conditions where they’re from, but they came back! YAY!  But I digress…Escargot! This recipe isn’t very hard and you can get cans of the little guys in pretty much every supermarket. They are in the tuna/canned fish aisle. I do prefer the ones they served drowned in butter and garlic, with bread on the side for dunking! Heavenly! Serve in an escargot dish or a shallow bowl. Whatever you have will work! 

INGREDIENTS:

¾ cup butter

2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon finely chopped onion

2 tablespoons white wine

1 tsp Pernod or anise-flavored liqueur (omit if you don’t like anise)

Pinch grated nutmeg

1 can escargot, well-drained

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

 

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a large frying pan, melt butter over high heat; stir in garlic and onion. Cook until tender but not brown.

2. Stir in wine, liqueur, nutmeg and escargot; season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Reduce heat to low; simmer 10-15 minutes or until flavors are blended. Sprinkle with parsley.

Serves 6

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Alchemy Bar’s Cucumber Sunrise (Carnival Cruise Lines)

Image result for cucumber sunrise

Yes, another cocktail. Hey what can I say,  I love new and refreshing cocktails on a hot summer day, on a cruise, in the Caribbean…Anywhere really! And anyone who has cruised on Carnival knows all about the Alchemy Bar! It’s a great bar, if you can get a seat or place at the counter! Always popular. They have a list of drinks they’ll make but they like to be creative too. So be adventurous if you dare!

cucumber sunrise

This is a simple cocktail that takes no time at all to make. The recipes call for specific brands of Vodka but just use whatever you like. No judgement here. I added the video from Carnival Cruise Lines at the bottom.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 oz Belvedere vodka (or your favorite vodka)
  • 1 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1 oz Monin watermelon syrup (or other brand if you can find it)
  • 2 cucumber wheels
  • 3/4 oz orange juice

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Drop the cucumber wheels into an empty pint glass (or cocktail shaker). Muddle those wheels.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients. Add ice, then cover it to prepare for shaking.
  3. Shake it for five seconds or so, then strain with a fine strainer if possible into a chilled glass. 
  4. Garnish with a cucumber wheel on the glass!

Serves 1

 

Baked Alaska (Carnival Cruise Lines)

Years ago on most of my early cruises they always served Baked Alaska on the Captain’s Night or some other elegant night for dessert. They still serve it BUT with one difference, it is no longer flaming. Yes, flaming. I remember the first time I saw this, the waiters all came dancing into the dining room holding a flaming Baked Alaska! It was quite the parade. But as with all wonderful things of the past, it is no longer a flaming performance. I guess they realized flames like that on a cruise ship can be very dangerous and stopped it, until recently! It has made a comeback on the Carnival Vista late 2017 and is expected to start returning fleet-wide this year, if not already! (see YouTube video at end of post)

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Either way, the dessert is still very popular and unique though it’s not very difficult to make, it takes time. Lots and lots of time. So for a special occasion (and plenty of room in the freezer) it is worth it. This recipe also only calls for vanilla ice cream. On the ships they serve it with a Neapolitan type ice cream, vanilla/chocolate/strawberry.  That is a bit more extensive to do so one flavor of ice cream is definitely easier.

This recipe I found on many sites but the photos are mine. Now if I could just find a photo of a flaming one… Does this count?

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1 box white cake mix (any kind)
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 8 egg whites
  • 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar

 

Directions:

  • Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch round mixing bowl or deep 8-inch square container with foil. Spread ice cream in container, packing firmly. Cover and freeze 8 hours or until firm.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour an 8×8 inch pan.
  • Prepare cake mix with egg and almond extract. Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake in preheated oven according to package instructions, until center of cake springs back when lightly touched.
  • Beat egg whites with cream of tartar, salt and sugar until stiff peaks form.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment or heavy brown paper. Place cake in center. Turn molded ice cream out onto cake. Quickly and carefully spread the meringue over the cake and ice cream, all the way to paper to seal. Return to the freezer for 2 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Place the Baked Alaska on the lowest shelf and bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until meringue is lightly browned. Serve at once.

Serves 16

 

(Yes this audio on this sounds computerized. You get the idea though.)

 

Coconut Flan (Carnival Cruise Lines)

coconut-flan-Carnival

Growing up in a half Puerto Rican household I had my fair share of flan. Needless to say after a while I wasn’t impressed anymore. But I’ve come back to the flan fold, so to say. While on the Carnival Liberty one of our excursions was a walking/dining tour of Old San Juan. The dessert for our meal was flan. I have to be honest I was a little disappointed. Until I took my first bite! Wow, I don’t remember the flan I had as a kid being this good. It was a caramel coconut flan and I wanted another serving when I was done! So now when I see it on the dessert menu on a cruise I’m not scared to get it. I welcome it! So creamy! Sweet. Coconut. Rich. Delicious! I also forgot to take a picture of the one I had in San Juan so Carnival’s picture will have to do for now. If anyone else has a photo of the flan from any cruise, please post it in the comments!

Carnival’s recipe is pretty simple. It calls for a “flan pan” but you can use a regular cheesecake/springform pan or 6 ramekins.

Feel free to see the original recipe for Coconut Flan on Carnival Cruise Lines site.

INGREDIENTS

  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk
  • ½ cup shredded coconut (for garnish)
  • 1 pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oven to 350°F
  2. Add sugar to a medium saucepan and cook over low-medium heat, stirring continuously to keep it from burning and sticking to the pan. When it’s done (about 10 minutes), it will be melted and caramel-colored.
  3. Carefully pour melted sugar into flan pan or ramekins.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, beat eggs, coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, and salt until well blended.
  5. Pour into flan pan or ramekins, and then set pan/ramekins into larger baking pan. Fill larger pan with 1 inch of hot tap water.
  6. Bake uncovered for 45-55 minutes or until knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. While flan is baking, add shredded coconut to a dry skillet and cook on medium heat until the edges are toasted and starting to brown. Set aside as garnish.
  8. Carefully remove from the oven and let it cool.
  9. Chill for a few hours or overnight.
  10. When ready to serve, run a knife around the edge of the flan to loosen it from the sides.
  11. Garnish with toasted coconut and serve!

Serves 6

Blue’s Blue Margarita (Carnival)

The name of this margarita comes from the Blue Iguana Tequila Bar on just about every one of Carnival’s ships.

Blue Margarita with a lime

This recipe is very simple and refreshing on a hot day! It is a blender drink but if you prefer, it can also be served on the rocks. You can find the original recipe on Carnival’s website

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 ½ oz Margaritaville Tequila, or any of your favorite tequila, silver is best.
  • 1 ½ oz Blue Curaçao
  • 3 ½ oz frozen lemonade mix
  • 3 ½ oz simple syrup
  • lime for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Pour all ingredients in a blender.*
  2. Add a large scoop of ice.
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Pour in a 12 oz. glass.
  5. Garnish with a slice of lime

*Pour all ingredients and ice into a cocktail shaker and shake till all mixed. pour into glass with ice.

blue margarita

 

This recipe is for 2 drinks.

blue iguana tequila bar on carnival cruise lines

Carnival Cruise Lines: Guy Fieri’s Pig Patty Burger

So, if you’ve cruised on Carnival in the last several years most of you have had the pleasure to experience Guy’s Burgers. Honestly, it’s the FIRST thing we do on a Carnival cruise when we get onboard. I don’t think I have found anyone who doesn’t like these burgers. They are made fresh to order and can include several toppings such as cheese, onion rings, mushrooms, Donkey Sauce, etc. Talk about an amazing hangover cure as well! I know some people (Joe R.) who ate Guy’s 2-3 times a day on our last cruise!

Currently Guy’s Burger Joints are on almost two dozen of the Carnival ships and serve over 100,000 burgers a week, easily, fleet wide. What’s better than having a delicious, juicy, greasy burger and crisp fries poolside, at sea, in port, anywhere! Yes, they have tons of calories, but I believe they are worth every single one. There are 4 different versions of the burger and they all come with a generous portion of hand cut french fries. Plus there is a fixin’s bar with all kinds of toppings from mushrooms to peppers to onions, sauces.

2015-03-08 13.24.46

So when the cruise is over and you’re jonesing for a delicious bite of heaven you can now make your own at home. The Pig Patty Burger of course has bacon on it. Of course! This recipe is for 4 people . Yes it seems like a lot of ingredients and work but it’s worth it. You of course can adjust the ingredients if needed. It is a unique burger and worth every bite!

Ingredients for Burger

  • 2 heads garlic
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 12 ounces thinly sliced Applewood smoked bacon
  • 32 ounces ground beef (80/20 blend)
  • 8 slices cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth mixed with 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 brioche hamburger buns, cut in half
  • 1 kosher dill pickle, finely sliced
  • 1/2 sweet onion, very finely sliced
  • 1 beefsteak tomato, finely sliced
  • 1/4 head iceberg lettuce, finely sliced
  • 2 ounces Super Melty Cheese (‘SMC’) Sauce (recipe follows)
  • Donkey Sauce (recipe follows)
Super Melty Cheese (SMC) Sauce Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole milk, warmed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Pinch grated nutmeg
  • 3 ounces grated yellow American cheese

Donkey Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup minced roasted garlic (use a little less if not using pre-prepared roasted garlic as it is stronger in flavor and less subtle than fresh)
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 pinches ground black pepper

Instructions:
Roast Garlic: Cut off the top third of the garlic head to expose cloves. Place onto a piece of foil. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Fold foil to cover then place into oven for about 1 hour 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, discard husks and mash. (If you have a garlic roaster or other means of  doing this that is fine!)

Make Garlic Butter: Mix 1 teaspoon of the roasted garlic with room temperature butter. Season with salt. Set aside in the fridge to slightly firm up.

Make Pig Patties: Set a large pot of cold water over high heat and add the bacon. Bring to a boil and cook until the bacon is very tender and almost falling apart, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Drain and set aside to cool. Set a cast-iron or heavy pan over high heat. Divide the bacon into 4 even portions and form into a patty. Place each on the pan. Press down with a foil-covered brick to squash the bacon flat or other heavy pot. Cook until golden and very crispy – about 4 minutes. Remove and keep warm.
Make SMC Sauce: In a medium saucepan, add the butter and set over medium heat. Allow the butter to melt, then sprinkle with the flour and stir with a whisk. Cook over low heat until the butter and flour combine into a mixture, like wet sand. Once combined, stir for 1 to 2 minutes to cook the flour (but without adding color). Pour in the milk slowly, whisking to combine. Continue stirring until the mixture thickens up, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the salt, nutmeg and cheese and stir until the cheese has melted and the mixture is smooth. Set aside and keep warm until ready to use. Yield: 1 cup.
Make Donkey Sauce:  Mix mayonnaise, roasted garlic, mustard, Worcestershire, salt and pepper together until smooth. Yield: about 1 cup.
Make Burgers: Divide the ground beef into 4 equal portions (8 ounces each) and form into 4 tight balls. Season all over with salt. Place in pan (which still has some of the bacon fat on it) and allow to brown for 1 minute. Then flatten with a strong, flat metal spatula – press down with a foil-covered brick on top of it, as well. Flatten to approximately 1/3-inch thickness and continue to press down with the spatula as it cooks. Cook until the burgers develop a crust on the first side, 1 1/2 minutes. Flip over and cook on the second side to develop a crust on that side, 1 minute. Add 2 ounces SMC Sauce and top with a slice of cheese. Add a splash of the chicken stock and water mixture to the pan and immediately place a dome lid over the top of the burger to trap the steam. Allow to cook for 1 minute and allow cheese to melt then remove dome and set burger aside. Brush the cut sides of the buns lightly with the garlic butter. Toast the buns in the pan until golden, about 30 seconds on each side.
To assemble: Smear the Donkey Sauce on the cut side of both bun halves. Layer the base with pickle slices and onions. Top with the hamburger patty. Top with a bacon “pig patty” and SMC Sauce.  Top with tomato slices and lettuce. Place the top half of the bun on top.
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This recipe is courtesy of Porthole Cruise magazine.