Archive for the Category » New Orleans Classics «

Blackened Chicken Sliders with Bacon and Avocado-Basil Cream

Earlier today, I was scrolling through my Facebook feed when I came across a funny comment that my dear friend, Cindy, had posted. It read, “Here ye Here ye Casa Sanders is no longer taking reservations until September 2016!!!! Peace Out!” I laugh every time I read it because I know all too well where she’s coming from. You see, last year, Cindy and her family moved from the piney woods of Mandeville (a New Orleans suburb) to the Windy City. Since this is their first full summer in Chicago, their home has been nothing short [ ... ]

Stuffed Artichoke Soup

If you spend anytime at all on social media, you’re probably familiar with the trend where someone takes a popular main course and transforms it into a soup. On any given day, you can find the likes of Cabbage Roll Soup, Cheeseburger Soup, Chicken Potpie Soup and even Lasagna Soup flooding Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram feeds. The pictures are drool-worthy and they all sound deliciously inviting. But they pale in comparison to my recent discovery of a local obsession of the same kind—Stuffed Artichoke Soup. As the name implies, this soup brings together all the garlicky, [ ... ]

Stuffed Peppers

People always joke that when you visit New Orleans your vegetable intake will be limited to the curly parsley decorating your plate or the pickled okra bobbing about in your Bloody Mary. Depending on how you choose to spend your time here, that could very well be true. But as the locals can tell you, there are plenty of beautiful, fresh vegetables to be had in these parts all year long. That’s one of the many fringe benefits of living in a subtropical environment. And because we have a great variety of veggies with extended growing seasons, [ ... ]

Creole-Italian Baked Cucuzza

“Hey googootz!” If you grew up in New Orleans, chances are you’ve heard that phrase or have been the recipient of that term of endearment. I’m not sure how much it’s used these days, but when I was little it was expressed often and usually by older women addressing relatives or close friends. Oh, and you may also recognize the word if you were a Sopranos fan. I never watched the show, but have learned that Tony occasionally called his son A.J. “Googootz.” The word stems from cucuzza (pronounced “ku koo za”), an edible Italian [ ... ]

Grilled Chicken Wings with White Rémoulade Sauce

The inspiration behind this unlikely duo hails from North Alabama of all places. Are you familiar with Alabama White Barbecue Sauce? I wasn’t until a couple of months ago when my social media feeds starting buzzing about it. Because I’m a sauce girl, my curiosity was piqued. So I did a little digging and learned that this unique sauce was created back in 1925 by Big Bob Gibson of Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q in Decatur, Alabama. He used it primarily to “baptize” smoked chickens. Since then, Big Bob’s signature white barbecue sauce, along with [ ... ]

Chargrilled Escargots

Our gas grill recently died and, after much deliberation, the hubby and I decided to replace it with a charcoal grill. This was a big step for us because although we’ve always preferred the flavor of charcoal grilled foods (absent “lighter fluid essence”), we had come to highly depend on the convenience of our gas grill. That was especially true for me when it came to developing new recipes. With the gas grill, I wouldn’t hesitate to test a small batch of something on the fly. Charcoal, on the other hand, required more forethought, time, attention and skill. I wasn’t [ ... ]

Crawfish Bisque

Throughout South Louisiana, many families hold large crawfish boils on Good Friday then spend the better part of Holy Saturday working elbow-to-elbow preparing what is known around the region as the most time-consuming and labor-intensive dish that’s ever come out of a Cajun or Creole kitchen—Crawfish Bisque. This impressive meal is an Easter Sunday tradition for many. And there’s no better time than Holy Week to bring grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles and cousins together to share in its preparation. If you are like me, however, and don’t have an army of relatives nearby, you start [ ... ]

Crabmeat on Toast

Preserving family recipes goes beyond collecting and deciphering faded handwritten notes or stained and splattered index cards and patching together these bits and pieces of the past into legible lists of ingredients and sensible instructions. The process also includes the more meaningful task of tracing the recipe’s origin back to a special person or place in time then tying all the elements together with a string of well-told stories punctuated with lots of passion and pride (as well as the occasional reference to a crazy relative or catastrophic kitchen mishap). It’s these associations that remind us of experiences [ ... ]

Shrimp Etouffée

When most people hear the word etouffée, their minds immediately jump to crawfish. That’s fair considering this method of cooking is made most frequently them. But other shellfish, poultry and wild game can also be cooked successfully in this fashion. After all, etouffée is nothing more than a fancy word for smothered. Well, smothered South Louisiana-style. And by now you all know what that means–cooked in a deeply flavored sauce that’s made with a roux, the Holy Trinity, a small amount of homemade stock and a delectable combination of spices. When broken down this way, [ ... ]

Duck, Andouille and Tasso Jambalaya

Louisiana has long been known as Sportsman’s Paradise because of the state’s outstanding hunting and fishing resources. And on the hunting front, duck is probably the biggest draw for wild game enthusiasts. Louisiana’s popularity as a prime duck hunting destination is due to the large population of local species that take up residence in the area’s abundant wetlands and agricultural fields coupled with the region’s prime location along the famed Mississippi Flyway—that popular migratory route many game birds take each year in search of warmer weather. So based on that intriguing information, it should come as no [ ... ]
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