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Course Set for Creole Specialty

October 08, 1992|MIKE SPENCER | Mike Spencer is a member of The Times Orange County Edition staff who has authored several cookbooks. and

Kay Pastorius is more of a riverboat scrambler than a gambler.

And she'll be mixing 'em a lot of things good and proper this winter, plying her trade up and down the Mississippi on the Delta Queen and the Mississippi Queen, two luxury paddle wheelers.

Pastorius is a cooking teacher, owner of the School of International Cuisine in Laguna Beach, and--like taking coals to Newcastle--she'll be bringing her Cajun and Creole recipes and expertise to the South.

She's been engaged to lead classes aboard the boats, and while her primary subjects will be holiday hors d'oeuvres and confections, she plans to slip in some of the favorite main dishes perfected in more than 20 years of international travel and study of the kitchen arts.

She's no stranger to boating, either. She and husband Harold, a metal sculptor who has monumental pieces dotting the landscape from Brea to Anchorage, have sailed all around the Pacific in their 32-foot Bayliner and written a number of articles about their travels. One sail alone covered more than 7,000 miles along the Mexican coast.

Wherever they have been, though, food is the focus (she writes a regular column called Galley Ho for Sea magazine). And she's led cooks' tours of great restaurants and cooking schools in Italy and France.

Since traveling on the Delta Queen as a passenger ("and spending a lot of time in the galley with the chef") she's developed a passion for Cajun and Creole dishes, so much so that they've been incorporated into the regular weekly classes she conducts in Lake Mission Viejo (for information, call (714) 494-1774).

And one of her favorites is a shrimp and andouille sausage dish with Creole mustard sauce that's served over pasta.

"It feels so good in your mouth," is how one of her guests described it recently.

"The secret of the dish is the mustard, and you can't substitute it," she warns. She suggests if you're interested in dazzling a large party or a single significant other with it, check out specialty and gourmet shops for the condiment.

And don't worry about the meal being too spicy. "I'd call it full-flavored," she says.


2 tablespoons olive oil

3/4 pound andouille sausage (kielbasa can be substituted), thinly sliced

12 ounces raw medium shrimp, peeled, deveined

3/4 cup green onions, chopped

1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/4 cup white wine

2 tablespoons white wine Worcestershire sauce

2 cups heavy cream

3 tablespoons Creole mustard

salt, pepper to taste

1 pound cooked pasta

Saute sausage in olive oil and drain fat; add garlic, onions, mushrooms, and saute about 2 minutes; add wine and Worcestershire, scraping residue from bottom of skillet to mix in. Simmer until liquid is reduced about half. Add shrimp and simmer 3 minutes longer. In a separate pan, mix cream and mustard and boil until reduced by half. Combine with sausage mixture, season to taste and serve over pasta. Serves 6.

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