Dec 1, 2022
Food & Drink

Recipe Reflections

These days, with TikTok, YouTube and Pinterest we’re never in need of the perfect recipe. Whether it’s a five-minute meal or trying your hand at something new, there’s something to be said about those culinary creations that are handed down through the generations.

Tom Glenn Oysters

Courtesy of Chef Keith Pardue, Culinary Director of South Market


• 18-24 raw oysters, shucked

Oyster Topping Sauce

• 1 lb. smoked Tasso ham, shredded

• 1 qt. heavy whipping cream

• 1 oz. white cooking wine

• 1 oz. shallot, Brunoise cut

• 1/2 oz. minced garlic

• 8 oz. unsalted butter

• 2 oz. grated parmesan cheese

Panko Topping

• 4 oz. panko breadcrumbs

• 2 oz. grated parmesan cheese

• 1 tbsp. kosher salt

In a large saucepan, melt butter at low heat and add Tasso. Render the Tasso until it is browned. Add shallot and garlic then toast. Deglaze with white wine and reduce by half. Add heavy cream and reduce by a quarter. Once reduced, turn off the heat and add parmesan cheese and stir until melted. Place in the refrigerator to fully cool and thicken.

In a food processor add panko breadcrumbs, salt and parmesan cheese then completely incorporate.

Once the sauce is fully cooled and thick, place one tablespoon on each shucked oyster followed by one teaspoon of panko topping. Put in the oven at 400 degrees until breadcrumbs are golden brown. Put on a plate and enjoy.

Photo by Kate Treick Photography

A seafood staple of the Gulf Coast, the oyster has always had a special place in the heart of Pensacola. And it’s especially so when the recipe symbolizes family traditions.

South Market’s culinary director Keith Pardue reflects the very deep meaning of the outstanding oyster presentation.

“When I was a kid, my grandfather, Thomas Glenn Miller, taught me how to shuck oysters.

I used to sit on the tailgate of his truck with a flathead screwdriver and a bucket while we would shuck bushels of oysters for our family. After we would shuck them, we would grill them with butter, Tasso ham and garlic. I wrote this recipe to honor my grandfather and every time I see one get sold in our restaurant I always look up to the sky knowing he is smiling down.”

Chiles En Nogadas

Growing up, MariCarmen Josephs and her family would typically forgo the turkey and stuffing for holiday meals. In fact, it wasn’t unusual for her dinner table to feature an array of authentic international cuisine any day of the year.

“While fancy, multi-course dinners were commonplace at home when I was growing up, I always looked forward to the splendor of holiday meals,” she reflects.

Fortunately for Josephs, her mother Juliet DeMarko is an internationally trained chef and restaurateur who is always able to capture the flavor and flair of her creations. Josephs said the holidays usually led to showstopping creations.

“She always took a little extra time during the holidays to make something that was sure to ‘wow.’ Love is in the details after all.”

Josephs explained that Chiles en Nogadas was perhaps her mother’s favorite dish. DeMarko traveled to Mexico a number of times, especially since one of her daughters and her three grandchildren resided there. Although this dish is normally served in the fall around late September in Mexico, Chiles en Nogadas is also an excellent holiday dish representing both the colors of the Mexican flag and the spirit of Christmas.

“Roasted green poblano peppers are stuffed with a meat and fruit-filled picadillo, then coated in a decadent white walnut sauce only to be garnished with jewel-like, crimson pomegranate seeds,” Josephs said. And just like the recipe itself and the women who create it, the presentation is dramatic, and the sweet and savory flavors bring all the warm feels.

Photo by Kate Treick Photography

Gluten-free. Courtesy of MariCarmen Josephs, Carmen’s Lunch Bar & Tapas, and Juliet DeMarko

Nogada Sauce Ingredients

• 1 1/2 cups walnut halves (see instructions below)

• Whole milk for soaking walnuts

• 1 cup Mexican-style crema (sour cream)

• 2 oz. whole milk

• 2 oz. Mexican queso fresco

• 2 oz. cream cheese

• 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

• 2 tbsp. brown sugar

• 1/4 tsp. salt

Start the nogada sauce one day in advance. Blanch and peel the walnuts by cooking them in boiling water for one minute and then shocking them in an ice bath. Drain the walnuts. Peel the skins off by breaking the walnuts in half and peeling the skins where you can get the skin to run. While this process is quite tedious, it will yield a much smoother and less bitter sauce. Once peeled, soak the nuts in whole milk overnight in the fridge.

To make the sauce, drain the walnuts and combine all ingredients in the blender and puree until very smooth. Serve sauce at room temperature.

Meat & Fruit Filling Ingredients

• 14 cup extra virgin olive oil

• 2 cups yellow onions, small dice

• 1/4 cup shallots, fine dice

• 1 tsp. salt

• 1 can (14.5-oz.) crushed fire-roasted tomatoes

• 1/4 cup sherry, medium sweet (optional)

• 2 bay leaves

• 1 cup golden raisins

• 3 lbs. freshly ground pork

• 2 tsp. kosher salt

• 1/2 tsp. black pepper

• 1 tsp. smoked paprika

• 1/8 tsp ground clove

• 1 tsp. chipotle chile powder

• 1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger

• 1 cup unsweetened spiced apple cider

• 1 cup Bartlett pear, diced, skin on

• 1 cup crisp apple, diced, skin on (such as honey crisp)

• 1 cup honey mango, diced

• 1 cup toasted pine nuts

• 1/2 cup cilantro leaves & stems, chopped

Saute the onions, shallots and salt in olive oil until tender, approximately 15 minutes over medium heat. Add the canned tomatoes, sherry and bay leaves. Simmer for another 10 minutes. Add the golden raisins to plump.

In a separate large saute pan, start browning the ground pork over high heat. Add the mixture of dried spices and continue browning. Add the fresh ginger and tomato sauce to the meat and continue stirring and cooking for another 10 minutes. Add the spiced apple cider, the fresh diced fruit and the toasted pine nuts and stir to combine.

Finish with chopped cilantro. Reserve meat filling.

Peppers & Garnishes Ingredients

• 8 poblano peppers

• Pomegranate arils

• Fresh cilantro

Roast the poblanos over an open gas flame. Allow the peppers to blacken completely on all sides. Place peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Once cooled, peel and clean peppers.

Cut a slit down the middle of the peppers to remove the seeds and seed sack. Once cleaned, stuff peppers generously with the meat filling. Transfer the peppers to a baking dish and cover with foil. Bake the peppers at 375 degrees until hot, approximately 30 minutes.

Transfer each hot pepper to an individual dinner plate. Spoon the walnut sauce over each pepper. Garnish with pomegranate arils and fresh cilantro. Serve one whole pepper to each guest as the main course.