Life as we know told by Heather

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Cajun cookin'

One of my favorite things about Louisiana is the food. A lot of it is things that you just can't find anywhere else. Or you can find them other places, but they don't taste as good as you know them to be down south.
There were a few things I didn't get pictures of, especially the appetizers Jason's uncle made. Taken apart I don't like any of the ingredients on their own (except for the bacon), but together it was an amazing treat.

And I didn't take any pictures of our breakfast fare from Rob's Donuts. We all know what donuts look like so I didn't think it was necessary, but they are truly the best donuts I've ever had.

Here are some favorites from our trip:

Cajun Potato Kitchen serves huge baked potatoes loaded with a variety of toppings. I can't even remember what mine was, I think it was steak and gravy, and Jason's was stuffed with crawfish etouffee. They're so good.

Dinner at the Half Shell was interesting. It's a local hole-in-the wall type place and all the customers seemed to know other customers. The kids also made a gentleman friend at the table next to us. This is just a crabcake sandwich, which you can get pretty much anywhere, but it's one of the best I've ever had.

We took the kids to lunch at Frostop because it served kid-friendly food. We like it for the amazing root beer served in frosty mugs.

Sarah and I had never had boudin, so a public initiation at the family cookout was set-up. This kind was synthetic so didn't have the gross casings, otherwise I don't know if I'd have tried it or not. But we thought it was tasty.

My second ever crawfish boil. This picture's a little blurry but I like it anyway. Everyone makes boiled crawfish differently with different sauces as well. I usually get pretty good at peeling it by the time I'm full. I just can't look at their beady little eyes, it creeps me out. Jason and his cousin's husband actually caught all of this crawfish for our dinner.

LaBayou is one of my favorite restaurants in the French Quarter, and it just so happens that when you ride the street car it drops you off right at the edge of Bourbon Street where the restaurant is. Jason and his brother ate here twice in three days.

Crawfish cakes with a crawfish remoulade.

Crawfish pasta had sauteed crawfish in the pasta and fried crawfish on top. The sauce was a Cajun alfredo and there was paremsan cheese on top. My sister-in-law and I shared both of these for dinner and ate every last bite.

You can't go to New Orleans without stopping at Cafe du Monde. We took the kids here for dessert. I must admit that the beignets were not the best I've ever had. They were decent, but I think they didn't hit the powdered sugar soon enough after coming out of the fryer. I was really surprised though at how much I enjoyed the frozen coffee. I really love their coffee and chicory au lait, but it was so hot that night I opted for the frozen and I'm so glad I did.

Watch Man v. Food on the Travel Channel? We saw the New Orleans episode and decided we had to eat at Mother's. This is the file gumbo. I ate the whole bowl. After a very long day in the French Quarter we got off the street car at VooDoo BBQ & Grill, a restaurant we passed every day on St. Charles Street. It was SO good. I got a platter of pulled pork and Caribbean jerk chicken with macaroni and cheese and corn pudding. The chicken was so good I gave my pulled pork to Jason before trying it. It looked good though, and they had sauces on the table for you to choose from. I think they need to get a franchise up here.

Sarah and I spent one day shopping and eating in the French Quarter and we'd been wanting to try some fried alligator, so we ate lunch at Cafe Pontalba. The beauty of the French Quarter is that all the restaurants post the menu outside, so you can find what you want before you decide where to eat. This place is right in Jackson Square across from St. Louis Cathedral and is open on two sides, so we had a great view and a fun time. The alligator was pretty tasty, too. I don't know that I'd order it again just because there's other things I'd like to try, but now that I've tasted it I wouldn't shy away from it in the future.

We also shared this crawfish fettuccine. It wasn't as good as the crawfish pasta at LaBayou, but we still liked it.
On the way back to our hotel I had to stop at NOLA and get these bourbon mashed sweet potatoes. Sarah couldn't believe I spent almost $7 for them, but it is an Emeril restaurant afterall, and you only live once, so I got them. They weren't as fantastic as I had hoped, but still good. The green onions added a nice flavor. We also stopped at The Gumbo Shop. She got some gumbo to take back to the hotel and I got bread pudding. It was really hard to find bread pudding that didn't have white chocolate in it, so I was elated when someone at the Tabasco store told me I could find it here.
Another crawfish boil, different side of the family. Also some amazing desserts this day. I think I have recreated cousin Shannon's frosting for brownies, so I'm pretty excited about that.
Thus ends the food journey (insert sad face here). I can't wait to go back and do it all again.

1 comment:

Kate said...

Man v. Food - we LOVE that show and watch it all the time - even repeats - I know exactly what episode you are talking about :)

Looks like a lot of food fun!!!