By Bonnie Suggs
Lagniappe: Kimberly’s Favorite Thing to Cook: Anything that takes a long time to cook. I love preparing and the presentation of dishes. Her guilty pleasure: Popeye’s Fried Chicken Kimberly’s Funniest Recent Comedic Performance: The Holy Family Senior Supper-I dressed like a senior and presented the 12 days of Old Age of Christmas and performed Sonny & Cher’s “I Got You Babe” duo with a friend. The seniors enjoyed it. What keeps Kimberly and Terry Coye both smiling so much after 36 years of marriage? Being repeatedly blessed by everyone who has touched our lives and so proud to be part of a wonderful community.
Attending a recent Holiday Hurrah party at the home of Terry and Kimberly Coye, I was introduced to a new love- Kimberly’s Cream of Mirliton, Crab and Shrimp Soup. Whether you enjoy mirlitons or don’t even know what to do with one, this soup is easy as it is good. Now, that leads us to the proper pronunciation of the green vegetable (fruit) mirliton(chayote) itself. Mel-lei-taw(n) or Mer-lee-taw or perhaps 5 other ways of pronouncing it. Let’s just throw out the “proper” and just let it roll off your lips the way you want. One thing is guaranteed, everyone will be standing around the pot for a second bowl of this soul warmer.
Kimberly Coye’s Cream of Mirliton, Crab and Shrimp Soup
2 tbsp. Crisco Oil
½ cup butter
1 cup sweet onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 lb. small Louisiana shrimp, peeled
1 lb. fresh white or jumbo crabmeat
½ tsp. ground black pepper
¼ tsp. ground white pepper
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. dried basil
2 quarts chicken broth with less sodium
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
½ cup fat-free half and half
- In large pot, add mirlitons and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook until fork tender, about 45 minutes. Transfer mirlitons to a colander, and let stand until cool enough to handle.
- Cut mirliton in half lengthwise and discard seeds and fibrous membranes. Scoop out as such of the mirliton as possible without the skin. Place in a large bowl and gently mash. In a large Dutch oven, heat the oil and butter over low heat until melted. Add onion and celery and cook about 8 minutes or until soft. Add garlic, and shrimp and cook for about 3-4 minutes or until shrimp turn pink. Stir in mirliton, salt, peppers and basil and cook for another 2 minutes or until well mixed. Add flour, stirring well.
- Gently fold in crabmeat.
- Stir in broth, and bring a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes. Remove from heat, and add half and half. Serve immediately.
- Garnish with a celery leaf or fresh parsley.
If preparing a day ahead simmer only for 15 minutes (step 4) and do not add the half & half.