This gumbo from chef-owner Donald Link of Herbsaint in New Orleans owes its flavor to the roux, a mix of flour and oil that's cooked until it's coffee-colored.
Spicy and Sticky Baby Back Ribs
To create the flavorings for these ribs, Donald Link combines eight spices for a rub and prepares a barbecue sauce with homemade pork stock. An easy variation is to cut back the number of spices in the rub to the five essentials, and use canned beef broth in the barbecue sauce.
Andouille-and-Sweet Potato Pie with Tangy Apple Salad
This creamy sweet potato filling is actually fairly simple, but Donald Link opts to prepare the crust by hand. To save time, make the crust in a food processor.
Iceberg Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing
Donald Link makes his own mayonnaise for the delightfully creamy blue cheese dressing. Using prepared mayo is also delicious in this easy-to-eat version of the classic iceberg wedge salad.
Crispy Chicken Leg Confit with Couscous and Olives
Chef Donald Link cooks chicken in duck fat until it's meltingly tender. For similar results, skip the duck fat and opt for olive oil instead.
Redfish On The Half Shell
Donald Link suggests grilling or roasting this fish, then serving it in its hardened skin ("on the half shell"). You can also use a large, flexible spatula to slide the fillets off the skin and onto a platter, discarding the skin, for a more elegant presentation. Redfish—a white-fleshed fish with big scales that are hard to remove—is an ideal choice, but striped bass is great too.