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Creamy Chicken and Andouille Fettuccine

It all started with chicken and andouille sausage. That dynamic duo that saves many a day in this hectic household. Then there were the unused portions of a couple of sweet peppers, an already-opened carton of heavy cream and an obnoxious amount of late-blooming jalapeños. With a limited amount of time on my hands and just enough determination to pull together a reasonable meal, Creamy Chicken and Andouille Fettuccine was created. It’s a satisfyingly simple and slightly spicy pasta dish that appeals to all the Hogan palates. It’s also a prime example of how the [ ... ]

Zesty Penne Pasta Salad

Memorial Day Weekend is upon us. The unofficial start of summer is here. And while most of you will be frolicking about in bathing suits on boats or beaches or hanging with your besties at barbecues or boils, I’ll be hold up inside with two very unhappy children who need to study for final exams. I think this is the first year since my kids have been in school that they have to return after Memorial Day. It has certainly put a damper on our holiday plans. Maybe we’ll be able to squeeze in a [ ... ]
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A Besh Box and Grilled Shrimp with Vanilla Bean and Pecan Pesto

For Christmas, the hubby surprised me with a special gift–a Besh Box.  I was reading up on this latest endeavor by Chef John Besh in the weeks preceding Christmas and was contemplating buying one myself. But I don’t recall ever mentioning that to Larry. I shouldn’t be surprised, though, by his perfect gift-giving abilities. After 20 years together, the man can pretty much read my mind. He also follows the New Orleans food scene almost as closely as I do and knows that any food-related or New Orleans-inspired gift rocks my world. So this Besh Box is really cool. It’s basically [ ... ]

Slow Cooked Vietnamese Pork

Looking to break out of your weeknight dinner rut? Then check this out. I’ve come up with a great little pork dish for the crock pot. Now I’m not much of a crock pot user. I bought mine solely to keep my gumbo warm during parties. But I have, on occasion, treated this apparatus like the efficient small cooking appliance it was intended to be. I just never felt like the sum of the parts I put in it were worth writing about. Until now. This slow cooked pork? It’s worth [ ... ]

Chicken Roban

Back in 1991, three New Orleans chefs got together and created a unique, local restaurant chain called Semolina. Their concept paired classic New Orleans and international dishes with pasta. The original menu enticed diners with options ranging from Muffuletta Pasta and Jambalaya Pasta to Chicken Enchilada Pasta and Pad Thai Pasta. Curiosity may have lured many diners in. But it was Semolina’s delicious execution of these one-of-a-kind offerings, friendly service and pre-dinner Peach Bellinis (among other weekly drink specials) that kept them–and me–coming back. When I moved to Atlanta in ’95, there was a Semolina restaurant in every Greater New [ ... ]

Seafood Manicotti

For those of you who have bid “farewell to the flesh” for the next 40 days (or at least for the remaining Fridays between now and Easter Sunday), this dish is for you. It is my annual creation added to an ever-growing list of meatless meals I prepare during the Season of Lent. Abstaining from meat has never been a huge lesson in self-denial for me or my family. In New Orleans, where fresh seafood is abundant, it would be a stretch to consider codfish balls, fried shrimp poor boys, all-you-can-eat fried catfish, seafood gumbo, crawfish etouffee, boiled crawfish and, [ ... ]

Italian Sausage in Red Gravy

The hubby and I never go out for Italian, even though our friends rave about a couple of Italian restaurants right here in our neighborhood. I don’t doubt their word. It’s just that I’m used to New Orleans Italian cooking. Creole-Italian. And, unfortunately, that kind of unique Italian fare doesn’t exist here in Woodstock, Georgia. You see back home these great establishments, whether serving up Northern Italian, Tuscan or Sicilian food, all have a New Orleans spin. For the most part, their menus read like they would in other parts of the country. [ ... ]

Italian Chicken

Okay guys, this Italian Chicken recipe is an oldie but a goodie! It’s a very nostalgic dish that brings me back to when I first moved out on my own. Although I was excited to have my own place, I was not prepared for all the alone time that came with it. Having grown up with two siblings in a neighborhood full of kids with my grandparents literally around the corner and plenty of aunts, uncles and cousins within half a mile, I was used to a full house with people always coming and going. My [ ... ]

Broccoli Pasta

I remember the first time Chandler, my oldest, had fast food.  It was a McDonald’s French fry, delightfully handed to her by the hubby who was driving the family back to Atlanta from one of our many trips home.  Chandler was maybe four at the time.  As she lifted that deep fried salt stick to her lips, I recall quietly praying she’d spit out the first bite and throw the rest across the car in total disgust.  I wasn’t ready for my real-food-loving, avocado-hugging daughter to succomb to the evils of fast, processed imposters.  But as I expected, she L-O-V-E-D [ ... ]

Muffuletta Pasta Salad

If you’re heading to a potluck this Fourth of July or at any time this summer, break away from boring with my Muffuletta Pasta Salad.  In this recipe, I’ve taken the full flavors of the iconic New Orleans muffuletta sandwich and tossed them with pasta.  Those include spicy cured meats, marinated olives and lightly pickled vegetables (both of which are represented in the one and only muffuletta condiment, Italian Olive Salad), smooth provolone cheese and even toasted sesame seeds–which mimic the bite and earthiness of the round Sicilian loaf on which the sandwich is traditionally served.  If you end up [ ... ]
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