Restaurant recipes

Captain’s Quarters, The Moo, River House

Now that some Kentucky restaurants are opening at 33% capacity, you might be rushing to your doorstep for the chance to dine in person at some of your favorite spots.

Or maybe not.

If you’re still unsure about dining out, or just looking to try a few new recipes with all the extra time you have during the ongoing coronavirus quarantine, these three recipes from some top outdoor restaurants around Louisville is sure to delight.

Keep in mind that restaurants are highly regulated and follow Gov. Andy Beshear’s “Healthy at Work” guidelines to make your dining experience as safe as possible. To see what restaurants are doing, see the full list of rules and regulations at

Captain’s Quarters: Stuffed Medjool Dates

5700 Captian’s Quarters Road, Prospect,, 502-228-1651. For 4 people

Note from the chef: These dates are very rich. Use the tastiest goat cheese and bacon you can find. We use double applewood smoked bacon. Cardamom honey adds another layer of sweetness and an exotic taste. The pistachios will give a little difference in texture and yet another layer of flavor.

  • 24 large Medjool dates
  • 1 pound local goat cheese
  • 12 slices very tasty thick bacon, pre-cooked and cut in half
  • ¼ cup of honey
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom seeds
  • Small handful of pistachio kernels

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Make a slit in each date. Remove the core. Stuff each date with about two tablespoons of goat cheese. Wrap the stuffed date with a piece of half-cooked bacon. Secure with a toothpick. Bake on a greased cookie sheet for about five minutes.

While the dates are cooking, warm the honey. Add the cardamom. Reheat until fragrant.

Finely chop the pistachios. (A food processor works best.)

Arrange the dates on a serving platter. Drizzle with cardamom honey. Sprinkle with pistachios.

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Le Moo: artichoke dip with spinach and fresh bruschetta

2300 Lexington Road,, 502-458-8888. Makes about 2 pints

Chef Hayley Charron's spinach artichoke dip with garlic toast and a fresh skewer is a star dish at Le Moo restaurant.
  • 1 tablespoon shallots, chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon olive or rapeseed oil
  • 1 ½ pounds artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • ½ cup of white wine
  • 1 pound spinach, chopped
  • 1 ½ pounds cream cheese
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 ½ cups parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup sour cream

In a skillet, brown the shallots and garlic in the oil. Add the artichokes. Deglaze with the wine. Add spinach. Cook the mixture well. Strain and remove from pan. Add cream cheese and cream to skillet. Season with red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Add the spinach and artichoke mixture to the cream and cheese. Bring to a light boil. Add the parmesan. Once the ingredients are well incorporated, remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Finish with sour cream.

Garlic Toasted Bread Slices

  • ½ pound unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 2 French baguettes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a stand mixer, whip the butter. Add garlic powder and salt. Whisk until completely combined. Cut the baguette, on the bias, into one-inch or one-and-a-half-inch slices. Spread the compound butter on each side of the bread. Toast in the oven for five to six minutes, until golden brown. Put aside.

Tomato mix

Makes 1 pint

  • 1 liter tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of shallots
  • ¼ ounce basil, packed, chiffonade
  • 1 ounce of red wine vinegar
  • 2 ounces balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon garlic oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Pinch of white pepper

Cut each tomato into quarters. Remove the seeds, then dice the tomatoes. Mix the tomatoes with the minced garlic, minced shallot, basil, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, garlic oil, salt and white pepper. Mix gently, but carefully, the ingredients to incorporate the flavors well.

To serve: Top the toasted bread points with the tomato mixture. Serve with spinach and artichoke dip.

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River House Restaurant & Raw Bar: Crispy avocado stuffed with cold shrimp, bay scallops and crab salad

3015 River Road,, 502-897-5000. For 4 people

Fried Avocado and Chilled Seafood Salad with Bay Scallops, Chunk Crab and Gulf Shrimp prepared by Chef John Varanese at River House.
  • 4 ounces balsamic vinegar
  • 2 ripe avocados, halved, peeled and seeded
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 1 ounce extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 cups of spring salad
  • ¼ cup grated heirloom carrots
  • 8 ounces mixed seafood

In a saucepan, add the balsamic vinegar and four ounces of water. Reduce by half. First sprinkle the avocado in the flour, then the egg, then the panko. Fry at 350º degrees in a deep fryer or in a pan until golden brown. In a bowl, add the green salad, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour the balsamic reduction into the bottom of four plates. Divide the greens between your plates. Sprinkle with carrots. Place the avocado on it. Fill with seafood mixture.

Seafood mix

  • ¼ pound 26/30 shrimp, cooked, peeled and chopped
  • 2 ounces of crabmeat in pieces
  • 2 ounces bay scallops, cooked
  • 1 teaspoon green onions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons celery, diced
  • 1 teaspoon of capers
  • Pinch of dill
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ cup aioli or mayonnaise

Mix all ingredients.

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