Recipes From Javier’s, The Grape, Hattie’s, Blue Mesa Grill, The Mansion, and Cafe Pacific: Jan/Feb 2005

Readers request their favorite recipes from the best local restaurants.

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Popular Recipes From Hot Dallas Restaurants

My favorite restaurant in town is Javier’s. Can you get one of their recipes? I love everything on the menu.
     Jim Kinsella, Dallas

Javier’s Pechuga de Pollo a la Mexicana
(serves 4)

 4     skinless chicken breasts
 4     serrano peppers, diced
 4     medium ripe tomatoes, diced
 2     large white onions, diced
 2     cups tomato sauce
 1     bunch chopped cilantro
 1/2  cup chicken stock or base
 1/2  cup grated Chihuahua cheese
        Salt to taste

Mix diced onions and peppers and sauté in skillet with a splash of olive oil over a medium fire until onions are golden brown in color. Add diced tomatoes and continue to cook, stirring often for approximately 3 minutes. Add tomato sauce and chopped cilantro. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, salt and pepper chicken breasts and grill over open fire until thoroughly cooked. Place grilled chicken on serving dish and pour sauce over breasts. Finish by sprinkling top with cheese and serve.


Every time I make a salad, it ends up tasting like nothing more than wet lettuce. I want to make a wonderful salad like the Caesar at The Grape. Can you help?
     Kerry Campbell, Dallas

The Grape’s Caesar Salad
(serves 1)

 6       anchovy fillets
 3       cloves garlic, chopped
 1       shallot, chopped
 1        tablespoon capers, chopped
           Dash of Tabasco
           Dash of Worcestershire
 2        egg yolks
 1        teaspoon Dijon mustard
 1/2     cup lemon juice
 1 1/2  cup canola oil
 3        cups fresh romaine lettuce
           Garnish with croutons
           Garnish with Parmesan cheese
           Salt and pepper, to taste

Combine all dressing ingredients in blender, except canola oil. While blending, slowly drizzle in oil. Toss romaine and croutons with dressing. Sprinkle with parmesan, salt, and pepper.


My co-workers just introduced me to Hattie’s, a charming restaurant in Oak Cliff. What is the secret to their pecan catfish?
     Jacqueline Broach, Plano

Hattie’s Pecan-Crusted Catfish with Lemon Butter Sauce
(serves 4)

 4    catfish fillets
 1     pint buttermilk
 1     cup Japanese bread crumbs
 1/2  cup pecan pieces
 2     tablespoons fresh parsley
 1/4  cup canola oil
        Salt and pepper, to taste

 1/2  bottle white wine
 3     tablespoons heavy cream Juice of 1/2 lemon
 1/2  pound unsalted butter, softened and cubed

Place catfish in bowl with buttermilk. Process pecan pieces and parsley until finely ground and place in separate bowl with bread crumbs. Salt and pepper. Remove catfish from buttermilk and place in bread crumb mixture. Press mixture into fish to make crust. Heat canola oil in a large pan. Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Finish in a 400-degree oven for about 6 minutes. In a non-reactive pan, cook wine at high heat until reduced by 2/3. Add heavy cream, and reduce by 1/3. Turn off heat and whisk in cubes of butter. Season with lemon juice and salt.  Serve fillet with sauce.


There is nothing more delectable than the corn cake served with most meals at Blue Mesa Grill. Any idea how they make it?
     Sarah Kleeman, Dallas

Blue Mesa Grill Sweet Corn Cake
(serves 10-12)

 1/3  cup Crisco shortening
 2     sticks unsalted butter, softened
 2     cups corn masa harina, (can be purchased at most markets)
 1/3  cup ice water
 4     cups fresh or frozen (thawed) corn kernels
 1/2  cup yellow cornmeal
 3/4  cup sugar
 1/4  cup heavy cream
 1/2  teaspoon baking powder
 1/2  teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place Crisco and butter in a mixing bowl and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add corn masa to butter mixture and mix for 2 minutes, until thoroughly incorporated. Add ice water and mix at medium for 1 minute or until completely absorbed. Place the corn kernels in a processor and pulse the machine on and off, until mixture is coarsely chopped. Set aside. Combine cornmeal, sugar, whipping cream, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add masa mixture and ground corn to cornmeal/sugar mixture. Stir to combine thoroughly. Pour batter into a prepared pan, cover tightly with aluminum foil to retain the steam. Bake for 45 minutes.


For our 10th anniversary, my husband and I had dinner at The Mansion on Turtle Creek. I loved the crab potatoes. Do you think they’ll share the recipe?
     Linda Davis, Kessler Park

The Mansion’s Twice-Baked Crab-Stuffed Potatoes
(serves 8)

 2     cups crabmeat
 4     large baking potatoes
 4     tablespoons butter
 1/2  cup onion, chopped
 1/2  cup mushrooms, sliced
        Ground pepper, to taste
 2     tablespoons low-fat plain yogurt
 2     tablespoons sour cream
 1/4  cup half-and-half
 3/4  cup Gruyere cheese

Clean and bake potatoes. Cool slightly and cut in half, lengthwise. Place pulp into bowl, leaving about 1/4-inch shell. Reserve skins and mash pulp. Melt butter in skillet and sauté onion until it takes on a light coloring, about 15-20 minutes. Add mushrooms and sauté another 5 minutes. Add crabmeat and pepper and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Cook mixture until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and add yogurt and sour cream, then add half-and-half. Combine crabmeat, onion mixture, pulp from potato, and about half of cheese. Add additional ground black pepper and a bit more half-and-half if desired. Place the mixture into the potato skins. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake at 400 degrees until cheese bubbles.


Please find the recipe for the oriental chicken salad on Café Pacific’s lunch menu. Thank you.
     Julie Villanuevo, Dallas

Café Pacific Oriental Chicken Salad
(serves 4-6)

 1/3  cup sherry
 1/4  cup soy sauce
 5-6  thin slices of fresh ginger
 2     large chicken breasts, boned with skin left on

Combine sherry, soy sauce, and ginger in a medium bowl. Add chicken, cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight, turning once. Drain and pat dry. Lightly salt chicken and coat pieces in cornstarch. Refrigerate at least one hour.

 1/2  medium head iceberg lettuce, shredded
 6     green onions, chopped
 1     bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
 1/2  cup toasted almonds, chopped
 1/2  cup toasted sesame seeds
 3-4  tablespoons rice noodles
        Oil for deep frying
 1/2  cup salad oil
 2     tablespoons lemon juice
 1     tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon soy sauce
 2-3  teaspoons sesame oil
 2     teaspoons dry mustard
 2     teaspoons sugar
 1     teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
 1     teaspoon hot pepper oil

In large skillet heat 2 inches of oil to 375 degrees. Add chicken and deep-fry until golden brown and crisp. Drain on paper towels and let cool. Slice chicken, including skin, into bite-size shreds and place in bowl. Add lettuce, onions, and cilantro. Sprinkle with almonds and sesame seeds.

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