WILLA JEAN’S FROSÉ • GRILLED SUMMER FEAST • CLASSICS FROM CHEF JOHN FOLSE Louisiana Authentic Cajun & Creole Cuisine h h T HE eat Local issue Eat light & fresh this summer July/August 2017 vol 20, issue 4 $5.99US $6.99CAN 7 25274 01055 08 4 DISPLAY UNTIL AUGUST 29, 2017 contents JULY/AUGUST 2017 | VOLUME 20, ISSUE 4 15 roux. ﬁrst, you make a 9 Editor’s Letter Seafood Paradise 7 Spillin’ the Beans Hot Nights, Hot Bites 5 by Paul A. Greenberg Aﬁeld & Aﬂoat Crispy Catﬁsh by Jay D. Ducote 9 21 Light & Fresh High Summer Refresher Life’’s Staff by Patrick Dunne 25 In Season Simply Decadent Culinary Antiques 27 Louisiana Foodways Fit for the Gods by Caitlin Watzke Chef’s Table Mekong Meets the Mississippi by Caitlin Watzke 3 louisianacookin.com contents entrées the main course 33 39 Frozen Paradise Beat the summer heat with frozen cocktails Fresh Fins Chef Michael Nelson of GW Fins shares his favorite summer seafood recipes 457 Magpies & Masterminds Collecting culinary antiques with Chef John Folse by Patrick Dunne 57 53 Grilled Summer Feast Fresh vegetables get the grill treatment in this bright and ﬂavorful family feast 597 Jackpot: Louisiana’s Best Casino Dining Bayou State casinos up their game lagniappe a little something extra 7 1 Local Pantry Jam On 751 Sweets Tarte Nouvelle 77 Quick & Easy Special Skillet 797 By the Book Smoke & Sizzle 8 1 Cooking with Chefs to Watch Love Me Tender 75 5 louisianacookin.com 87 89 95 97 Event Spotlight Fairs, Festivals & Events Recipe Index & Resources Lagniappe SKILLET-ROASTED OKRA WITH SPICY MISO SAUCE P. 77 July/August 2017 Volume 20, Issue 4 EDITORIAL DIRECTOR OF EDITORIAL OPERATIONS EDITOR Daniel Schumacher ASSISTANT EDITOR Caitlin Watzke RECIPE EDITOR Fran Jensen COPY EDITOR Marie Baxley CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jay D. Ducote, Patrick Dunne, Paul A. Greenberg CREATIVE DIRECTOR/PHOTOGRAPHY Mac Jamieson SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHERS John O’Hagan, Marcy Black Simpson PHOTOGRAPHERS Jim Bathie, William Dickey, Stephanie Welbourne Steele ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHER Caroline Smith CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER Denny Culbert Brooke Michael Bell GROUP CREATIVE DIRECTOR Deanna Rippy Gardner ART DIRECTOR Lynn Akin Elkins ST YLISTS Lucy Herndon, Beth K. Seeley FOOD ST YLISTS/RECIPE DEVELOPERS Melissa Gray, Nancy Hughes, Kathleen Kanen, Janet Lambert, Vanessa Rocchio, Jade Sinacori, Elizabeth Stringer ASSISTANT FOOD ST YLIST/RECIPE DEVELOPER Anita Simpson Spain CHEFS TO WATCH ADVISORY BOARD Kristen Essig, Holly Goetting, Jeffrey Hansell, Chris Lusk, Colt Patin SENIOR DIGITAL IMAGING SPECIALIST DIGITAL IMAGING SPECIALIST Delisa McDaniel Clark Densmore FOUNDERS Romney K. and Charley Richard D I G I TA L M E D I A MARKETING DIRECTOR Tricia Wagner Williams ONLINE EDITOR Courtney duQuesnay DIGITAL GRAPHIC DESIGNER Alana Hogg DIGITAL CONTENT STRATEGIST Brent Rosen A D M I N I S T R AT I V E HUMAN RESOURCES DIRECTOR Judy Brown Lazenby IT DIRECTOR Matthew Scott Holt DEALER PROGRAM MANAGER Janice Ritter ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT/EDITORIAL Morgan Crawford I N T E G R AT E D M A R K E T I N G S O LU T I O N S VICE PRESIDENT Ray Reed [AR, OK, TX] ACCOUNT DIRECTORS Katie Guasco [LA, MS] Claire Bucalos [NC, VA, WV, DC, MD] SMSS/Kelly Hediger [AL, GA, KY, TN] SMSS/Kristine W. Bihm [FL, GA, SC] Rhapsodic Media/Kathy Burke [IL, IN, IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, OH, WI] DIRECT RESPONSE Hagan Media/Katie Hagan ADVERTISING PRODUCTION REPRESENTATIVE Kimberly Lewis GRAPHIC DESIGNER/PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Rachel Collins For assistance with advertising, please call 1-888-411-8995 CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD/CEO Phyllis Hoffman DePiano PRESIDENT/COO Eric W. Hoffman PRESIDENT/CCO Brian Hart Hoffman EVP/CFO Mary P. Cummings VP/DIGITAL MEDIA Jon Adamson VP/EDITORIAL Cindy Smith Cooper VP/ADMINISTRATION Lynn Lee Terry EDITORIAL OFFICE 326 S. Broad St., New Orleans, LA 70119 Phone: (504) 648-2647 EVP/OPERATIONS & MANUFACTURING Greg Baugh VP/INTEGRATED MARKETING SOLUTIONS Ray Reed CUSTOMER SERVICE Louisiana Cookin’, P.O. Box 6201, Harlan, IA 51593 Phone: (877) 538-8362 Email: LUCcustserv@cdsfulfillment.com louisianacookin.com Louisiana Cookin’ ISSN 1096-4134 is published bimonthly by Hoffman Media, 1900 International Park Drive, Suite 50, Birmingham, AL 35243, 1.888.411.8995. Reproduction in part or in whole is strictly prohibited without the written consent of Hoffman Media. Louisiana Cookin’ is a registered trademark of Hoffman Media. SUBSCRIPTION RATES: For the United States, $25 per year, 6 issues; add $10 for postage in Canada; add $20 elsewhere. Single issues $5.99 available at newsstands and bookstores. Periodical Postage paid at Birmingham, Alabama, and additional mailing ofﬁces. POSTMASTER: SEND ADDRESS CHANGES to Louisiana Cookin’, P.O. Box 6201, Harlan, IA 51593. ©2017 Hoffman Media, LLC. Printed in the USA. E D I TO R ’ S L E T T E R SEAFOOD I GREW UP LOVING seafood. Shellfish, finfish, frog legs, the occasional shark—I would eat just about any sea creature. How lucky are we that the Gulf and inland waters of Louisiana have such an incredible bounty? This time of year, when light, fresh, bright flavors are key, and farmers’ markets are brimming with perfect produce, I eat as much of our local seafood as I can find. In this issue, we cover a terrific variety of techniques and flavors, from a decadent panko-crusted crab cake (page 19) and gorgeous shrimp-and-watermelon salad (page 18) to a family-friendly whole grilled fish (page 44) from Chef Michael Nelson at GW Fins in New Orleans. One of the things I appreciate most about Chef Michael’s cooking is that he not only focuses on the easy-to-love cuts of fish, but he also challenges himself to cook lesser-known pieces that are equally delicious. For this issue, he prepared Fish Heads in Curry Broth (page 42) that is bursting with flavor. The coconut broth, seasoned with lemongrass, ginger, and kaffir lime leaves is something you’ll soon be dreaming about. Don’t worry, though, if you have reservations about cooking with whole fish heads, simmering shrimp in the broth until pink and firm will deliver a dish that is just as delightful. No matter what you put on your family’s table this summer, remember to help support Louisiana’s farmers and fishermen. They tirelessly cultivate and catch some of the best flavors on the planet, and count on us, the eating public, for their livelihood. EDITOR’S PICKS WILLA JEAN’S FROSÉ • GRILLED SUMMER FEAST • CLASSICS FROM CHEF JOHN FOLSE Louisiana SEAFOOD DISHES Authentic Cajun & Creole Cuisine h h THE eat Local issue WHOLE GRILLED FISH PÊCHE SEAFOOD GRILL New Orleans TACO DE CAMARON (CHILE-MARINATED SHRIMP TACO) KI’ MEXICO Eat light & fresh this summer On the Cover Watermelon-Shrimp Salad (recipe page 18) photography by stephanie welbourne steele styling by lucy herndon recipe development and food styling by kathleen kanen Shreveport CRAWFISH BREAD FOLLOW US ON HOT TAILS New Roads VISIT US AT LOUISIANACOOKIN.COM. 9 louisianacookin.com SPILLIN’ T H E B E AN S HOT NIGHTS, HOT BITES by paul a. greenberg WELL, HERE WE are again, making it through another hot, sticky Louisiana summer. There’s really only one thing that can cheer us up—FOOD! We love to eat, talk about eating, reminisce about eating, dream, and even argue about it. Fortunately for us, there’s plenty of food to go around, and more often than not, we don’t have to go very far to find our heart’s desire, right? Sometimes it’s as close as our own backyard (think crawfish boils), or right in the neighborhood (think your favorite restaurant nearby). That made me start digging around to find the best local dining spots that only recently made their debut. NOLA NEWBIES I didn’t have to look very far. It seems as though the new restaurants are everywhere statewide. Consider New Orleans: the big news is that Dunbar’s Creole Cuisine has reopened in a new location with the same irresistible fried chicken for which it has long been known. If you’re from New Orleans, you know that Dunbar’s lost its tiny Uptown space to Hurricane Katrina’s merciless floods. That didn’t keep proprietor Celestine Dunbar down for long—she fed local university students from a food court until opening a new spacious place with mile-high ceilings this past spring. If you’re in New Orleans, what are 11 louisianacookin.com you waiting for? If you’re planning a trip here, tune up your taste buds and get ready for fried chicken that many consider the best in the city. Another noteworthy spring entrant in New Orleans is DTB (Down the Bayou). If Dunbar’s is all about nostalgia and history, DTB is strictly right now. Calling his cuisine “modern coastal Cajun,” owner Carl Schaubhut joins Chef de Cuisine Jacob Hammel (both Commander’s Palace alums) to offer up temptations such as boudin balls (YES!), roasted cauliflower with browned butter and almonds, and what I consider his pièce de résistance, fried cornbread with goat cheese, ham hock, and jalapeños. Very Southern. Very tasty. On historic St. Charles Avenue, an old furniture store has morphed into Lula, a new restaurant with its own still, as in distillery. So, while you are enjoying such delights as rum-lacquered shrimp or pork loin with Havarti cheese, after a starter of boudin egg rolls (again: YES!), a moonlighting medical doctor named Bear Caffery is nearby creating the house vodka, gin, and rum. That’s what I call “full service.” Owners Jess and Erin Bourgeois (Jess is another Commander’s Palace alum) are cleverly selling full bottles of the house spirits right there. Who says there’s no such thing as an original idea? AND JUST DOWN THE I-10… “What about Baton Rouge?” you ask. Word on the street is that popular New Orleans gourmet hot dog joint Dat Dog is taking its act on the road and opening three units in Baton Rouge. This is a pretty ambitious plan, since the company reportedly wants all three new locations open by the end of this year. So, if you’re up for probably the biggest selection of hot dogs and sausages in town—and the most massive order of fries ever conceived—get ready. Meanwhile in Shreveport, if you’ve waited patiently for a great restaurant right on the riverfront, get ready for SALT (which stands for Sea, Air, Land, and Time) inside the new Shreveport Aquarium. Since we’re talking about dining as locally as possible, know that this place plans to focus on local farmers, ingredients, and indigenous foods, with an emphasis on seafood and all-American selections. Could this be the beginning of a riverfront renaissance in Shreveport? Think about that while you’re enjoying SALT’s oyster bar or sipping a cool beverage on the open-air patio. Nice. The Port Grill is slated to open this August in Shreveport, featuring what its owners call “new Southern cuisine.” Sweet potato hummus, anyone? Hmmm. How about a slow-smoked, glazed pork shank? I’d go for the smoked Gouda grits and shrimp. This place has been a longtime coming, having been planned for at least a year and a half. I haven’t tried it yet, but it sure sounds like it was worth the wait. I’ll keep you posted on this one. Paul A. Greenberg is an inveterate local diner who has been covering the New Orleans restaurant scene in regional and national publications for 25 years. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 12 k BITE SIZE BITS Iverstine Family Farms in Baton Rouge has opened a butcher shop, Iverstine Farms Butcher. p by for a sandwich— ybe The Cuban dwich Crisis (smoked , roasted pulled pork, Swiss cheese), or The lai Shawarma Wrap oked chicken, pickled ons, and roasted garlic ce). Seriously. Tiger Deaux-nuts is dying a new location its gourmet doughnuts aton Rouge. How ut a marshmallow ff doughnut with a chocolate pudding center? Yes, please. Effervescence, a champagne bar, has opened in New Orleans with 18 sparkling wines by the glass and 90 by the bottle. You can even order half glasses if you want to try several. CHEF CHAT: DICKIE BRENNAN I caught up with one of New Orleans’ favorite sons, Dickie Brennan, whose restaurant collection includes Bourbon House, Dickie Brennan’s Steak House, Palace Café, and Tableau. If there’s a nicer guy in the business, I haven’t met him yet. We chatted about the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Catch and Cook Program and some goings on at his restaurants. Well, here you are in Barataria, the perfect place to ask you about the Louisiana Catch and Cook program. What’s it all about? I just caught some trout and redfish and we’re bringing them back to town to have Chef Eric [Cook] do it up. Right now, in restaurants we’re not allowed to buy redfish or trout. But if a licensed fisher with a licensed fishing guide catches it, you can bring it to the restaurant to cook it. The guide fills out a form for the customer and the restaurant has to keep the forms on file for tracking purposes. It’s something we really want to promote. Speaking of your restaurants, what’s really getting your customers’ attention these days? We’re doing great things at Bourbon House with bottom-raised oysters. We call some of our oysters “select oysters.” They’re more parallel to the East and West coast oysters. Don’t get me wrong; we still have our Gulf oysters, of course. We also have an oyster recycling program where we take the shells and send them out to help rebuild some of the coast. This time of the year is just a great time for seafood. People in New Orleans just love some of your happy hours, too. We’re real happy with our Black Duck Bar upstairs at Palace Café. We’re up to about 150 different aged rums now, and we have some great small plates and charcuterie. And we’re still doing great with our $5 cocktails and $5 flatbreads. Any plans to add more restaurants to your collection? Well, never say never, but right now we’re just working on getting the next generation in the family ready to run the business. We’ll see. NOW, THAT SHOULD KEEP YOU BUSY AND WELL FED UNTIL NEXT TIME. REMEMBER: BUY LOCAL, EAT OUT OFTEN, AND CLEAN YOUR PLATE. 13 louisianacookin.com AF I E L D & AF LOAT CRISPY CATFISH by jay d. ducote AT A RECENT planning meeting for my first restaurant, Gov’t Taco, a group of friendly folks started coming up with names for our signature tacos. The taco shop, which will reside in Baton Rouge’s White Star Market, got its name from being located on Government Street, being in Louisiana’s capital city, and is a reminder that I’m finally putting my two Louisiana State University political science degrees to use with something we can all agree on: tacos. We decided to use governmental puns in our taco names, playing off of historic phrases or parts of American government rather politicians or political parties. Our tacos will be more modern American than traditional Mexican, Tex-Mex, or Cali-Mex, so we knew it was important that the names convey that. We wanted to make them lighthearted and witty, but still descriptive. Since we wanted a solid Louisiana seafood taco on our menu (and love California-style fish tacos), we came up with a fried catfish taco with maque choux. We call it: The Catfish are Coming! THE CATFISH ARE COMING! MAKES ABOUT 3 SERVINGS ½ 2 cup mayonnaise tablespoons chopped pickled okra 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon Creole mustard 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 1 teaspoon minced garlic ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper Peanut oil, for frying 1 cup Jay D’s Louisiana Molasses Mustard 1 cup whole milk ¼ cup hot sauce 3 cups Slap Ya Mama Cajun Fish Fry 1 pound catﬁsh ﬁllets, sliced into 2x1-inch strips (about 32 strips) 2 teaspoons Slap Ya Mama Cajun Seasoning, or to taste (optional) 10 (4½- to 5-inch) corn tortillas Corn Maque Choux (recipe follows) Garnish: lime wedges, fresh cilantro, green onion, purple cabbage 1. In the work bowl of a food processor, combine mayonnaise, okra, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire, garlic, and cayenne; pulse until smooth. Cover and refrigerate. 2. In a large Dutch oven, pour oil to a depth of 4 inches, and heat over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350°. 3. In a shallow dish, combine molasses mustard, milk, and hot sauce. In another shallow dish, place ﬁsh fry. Dip ﬁsh in mustard mixture, letting excess drip off. Dredge in ﬁsh fry, shaking off excess. 4. Working in batches, gently place catﬁsh in hot oil. Fry until golden brown and cooked through, about 3 minutes. Let drain on paper towels. Season with Cajun seasoning, if desired. 5. In a large skillet, heat tortillas over medium heat until browned. Add a spoonful of Corn Maque Choux to each tortilla. Add catﬁsh strips. Top with mayonnaise mixture. Garnish with lime wedges, cilantro, green onion, and purple cabbage, if desired. Jay Ducote writes the blog Bite and Booze (biteandbooze.com) and hosts the Bite and Booze Radio Show on Talk 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge. Find him online @biteandbooze on Twitter and Instagram and at facebook.com/biteandbooze. 15 louisianacookin.com CORN MAQUE CHOUX MAKES ABOUT 3 CUPS 2 ½ 1 1 1 4 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 ¼ ¼ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil pound tasso, diced medium yellow onion, diced large red bell pepper, seeded and diced jalapeño pepper, diced cloves garlic, minced cups fresh corn kernels bay leaf cup dry white wine (such as Jay D’s Blanc du Bois) tablespoon Jay D’s Spicy and Sweet Barbecue Rub teaspoon kosher salt teaspoon ground black pepper cup heavy whipping cream cup unsalted butter cup chopped green onion 1. In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add olive oil. Add tasso, and cook, stirring often, until browned, about 10 minutes. Remove tasso with a slotted spoon into a heat-proof bowl. 2. In the same Dutch oven with remaining grease, add onion, red bell pepper, jalapeño, and garlic, and cook until the onion is translucent, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add corn and bay leaf, and stir again. Stir in wine, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping browned bits from bottom of pan with a wooden spoon. 3. Bring mixture to a boil; reduce heat and simmer. Add barbecue rub, salt, and black pepper. Let mixture simmer until wine is reduced by half. Add cream, and continue cooking until slightly thickened; then add the butter and stir to combine. Mix in green onion before serving. L I G H T & F R ES H HIGH SUMMER REFRESHER recipe development and food styling by kathleen kanen IT ISN’T SUMMER without watermelon, is it? We have memories of juicy watermelon slices from childhood and more recent ones of watermelon margaritas and aguas frescas. Fruit salads with perfect spheres of sweet, crisp watermelon have been a warm weather mainstay for decades, but here we give it the savory treatment. This picturesque watermelon salad is marinated in a lime dressing before getting topped with tender Louisiana shrimp, spicy jalapeños, and tart crumbles of queso fresco (though feta would be a fine substitute). WATERMELON-SHRIMP SALAD MAKES 4 SERVINGS 4 4 1 ⅓ (¾-inch-thick) watermelon wedges teaspoons sugar teaspoon lime zest cup plus 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, divided ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided 12 peeled and deveined large fresh shrimp, cooked, whole or coarsely chopped 1 cup diced seedless watermelon ¾ cup grape tomatoes, quartered ½ cup coarsely chopped avocado 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro 1 tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeño pepper ⅛ teaspoon ground cumin ¼ cup crumbled queso fresco Garnish: fresh cilantro sprigs, extra-virgin olive oil 1. In a glass baking dish, place watermelon wedges. In a small bowl, combine sugar, zest, ⅓ cup lime juice, and ⅛ teaspoon salt; pour over watermelon wedges. Refrigerate for 1 hour, turning once. 2. In a medium bowl, combine cooked shrimp, diced watermelon, tomatoes, avocado, cilantro, jalapeño, cumin, remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice, and remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt; gently toss. Arrange watermelon wedges on serving plates. Spoon shrimp mixture over watermelon wedges; sprinkle with cheese. Garnish with cilantro and olive oil, if desired. I N S E ASO N SIMPLY DECADENT recipe development and food styling by kathleen kanen EVERY ONCE IN a while, you deserve a treat. Some folks will turn to beach weekends or a trip to the spa, but this time of year, we luxuriate in freshly picked, jumbo lump Louisiana blue crab. Whether it’s stuffed in a Creole tomato, perched atop a piece of crispy panéed fish (and kissed with a delicate sauce), or gently molded into a crispy crab cake, we simply can’t get enough. This crab cake is light on fillers and big on flavor. Japanese bread crumbs give it a delightful crunch, and the Dill-Cucumber Sauce gives the dish an herbaceous zing. CRISPY CRAB CAKES MAKES ABOUT 4 SERVINGS 5 ⅔ ¼ ½ ¼ 1 ½ ¼ 1 tablespoons canola oil, divided cup fresh corn kernels cup ﬁnely diced red bell pepper cup mayonnaise cup chopped green onion tablespoon Creole mustard teaspoon kosher salt teaspoon ground black pepper large egg 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, drained and picked free of shell 1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs) Dill-Cucumber Sauce (recipe follows) Garnish: chopped fresh dill, chopped fresh chives 1. In a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add corn and bell pepper; cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Spoon corn mixture into a large bowl; let cool slightly. Add mayonnaise, green onion, mustard, salt, pepper, and egg; whisk until combined. Add crab and bread crumbs; gently toss until moistened. Refrigerate for 10 minutes. Shape mixture into ⅓-cup patties. 2. Heat remaining 4 tablespoons oil in same skillet over medium heat. Cook cakes in batches until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side, turning carefully with a spatula. Let drain on a wire rack. Serve with Dill-Cucumber Sauce. Garnish with dill and chives, if desired. DILL-CUCUMBER SAUCE MAKES ABOUT 1¼ CUPS ½ 2 2 2 2 ¼ ¼ 1 cup plain Greek yogurt tablespoons chopped fresh dill tablespoons chopped fresh chives tablespoons mayonnaise teaspoons Creole mustard teaspoon kosher salt teaspoon ground black pepper cup chopped seedless cucumber 1. In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, dill, chives, mayonnaise, mustard, salt, and pepper. Gently stir in cucumber. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. C U L I NARY AN T I Q U ES LIFE’S STAFF BREAD’S UNEVEN RISE IN NEW ORLEANS by patrick dunne | styling by kerry moody SOON AFTER ARRIVING in the Louisiana territory early in the 18th century, those sweet-tempered filles à la cassette acted up. It was not over the bugs, unattractive husbands, or batten-board houses to which they had been misled—it was about food. They had been promised resettlement in a tropical Paris with grandes rues, silk dresses, and suave beaux. Being practical orphans, they might have overlooked these few minor deceptions, but the cuisine was the final straw! Legend has it that a certain Madame Langlois had to use all her cunning to teach these high-spirited Europeans “Creole” culinary survival skills with the greatest challenge getting them to accept corn bread instead of their “French” wheat bread. In fact, it was around this time—due to the introduction of new milling and baking techniques—that Parisians began to be serious bread snobs, although the iconic long, narrow baguette with its crisp crust and chewy center was about a century and a half away from making its appearance. Fortunately, the young ladies settled down because it would be a long time before good white bread was purveyed in any Louisiana town. Decent wheat was hard to come by, and milled flour was susceptible to vermin and mold, and very often adulterated with all manner of things, including rice and plaster of Paris. The humid weather made bread making unpredictable, and the result was often soggy. In New Orleans, like everywhere, baking was an arduous task. Water for the dough had to come either from rain or the river (neither very untainted), and had to be hauled by enslaved labor back and forth to the bakers. Efforts to regulate and tax bread led to further complications. It was not until the influx of sturdy German immigrants in the first half of the 19th century that serious and successful bakeries began to appear. Later, the Italians added their talents. CORN BREAD LEGEND HAS IT THAT A CERTAIN MADAME LANGLOIS HAD TO USE ALL HER CUNNING TO TEACH THESE HIGH-SPIRITED EUROPEANS “CREOLE” CULINARY SURVIVAL SKILLS WITH THE GREATEST CHALLENGE GETTING THEM TO ACCEPT CORN BREAD INSTEAD OF THEIR “FRENCH” WHEAT BREAD. Patrick Dunne is proprietor of Lucullus in New Orleans, which boasts an international clientele because of the unique emphasis on antiques, art, and objects with a culinary connection. He is the author of The Epicurean Collector and a sought-after lecturer on table style and food history. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 22 BREADMAKERS HAD TO NOT ONLY BE CONCERNED WITH RECIPES AND TEMPERATURES, BUT INGREDIENT QUALITY. SIFTING AND REFINING FLOUR WAS THE FIRST STEP TO A BEAUTIFUL LOAF. THIS 18TH-CENTURY HANDWROUGHT FLOUR TROWEL WAS AN ESSENTIAL TOOL. 23 louisianacookin.com This was generally the larger American story as well. While the country became a great wheat producer and industrial milling was introduced rather early, the quality of bread was generally inferior. From the beginning in America, there was a preference for baking bread in pans and using small ovens, which produced a soft white loaf. This prejudice became entrenched with the invention of a mechanical slicer by Otto Rohwedde, a Midwesterner. It became so much a part of our culture that, after the 1930s, the phrase “best thing since sliced bread” became idiom for anything marvelous. Human creatures have been at work baking for a very long time and almost everywhere on the planet. For this to happen two critical components had to converge: fire and grains. Half a million years ago, Homo erectus seemed to have kindled the first blazes for cooking, and actual ovens have been excavated that are at least seven thousand years old. Even before agriculture, hunter-gatherers began to harvest seeds, toasting them to make them ready for milling and digestible as gruel. Primitive cooks were content with “flat” breads fashioned out of this unleavened mixture that could be cooked on a hot brick or brazier. It is a tradition that endures to the present, in forms like tortillas, roti, matzo, and markook. Wheat was first domesticated in the Levant (the modern-day Middle East), and for climatic reasons, Egypt became the wheat cradle of the world. It is still uncertain by what accident of fermentation yeast was discovered, but Egyptians were among the earliest to apply it to bread making, changing the process forever. That amazing society, pioneers in so many cultural advances, had the reputation of being fastidious bakers in the ancient world. The word Greek writers habitually used to identify Egyptians was artophagi, meaning “bread eaters.” While their bread was most probably gritty with sand and mica from their crude grinding tools, the variety of their loaves is impressive even today. Eventually, it was the Romans who became obsessed with bread. They preferred products of well-ground wheat that were very white, even if a bit of chalk was required to achieve the color. They perfected dried yeast as well, and it is said at the peak of their power, Roman bakers were providing more than 100,000 loaves a day. Over half the population of the city was on the dole, receiving a handout of food, and the notion that the only two things the people desire, “bread and circuses,” was a canny policy for civic stability. The need for wheat was certainly crucial to Rome’s imperialist policy, and their preoccupation with Egypt was as a main supplier. The Roman Empire carried bread culture into every part of Europe, and the tools and appurtenances changed very little over the millennia. If not by bread alone did men live, it did remain a fundamental dietary need, and bread shortages always meant unruly times. Social status was marked not just by with whom you broke bread, but by the qualitative refinement of that morsel. Needless to say, peasants ate quite differently than princes. Then, just as perfect white bread became available to almost everyone, in the perverse ways of our culinary habits, the fashion for the most rustic recipes of our ancestors returned. No tranche of bread was ever wasted, and toasting day-old slices elicited a number of implements, including this wrought iron hearth toaster and elegant Georgian silver toast rack. Toast without conﬁture was an unthinkable culinary offense. These precious 18th-century French handblown verrines both stored and presented sweet jellies and jams. LO U I S IANA FO O D WAYS FIT FOR THE GODS THE STORY BEHIND NEW ORLEANS NECTAR SODA by caitlin watzke THERE WAS A TIME when soda fountains could be found in nearly every drugstore in America, and in the soda fountains of New Orleans, there was arguably no flavor more popular than nectar. In Greek mythology, nectar (from the Greek word nektar) was the drink of the gods, and anyone who drank it was said to become immortal. While the soda New Orleanians came to know and love might not have had life-giving properties, the heavenly drink that graced soda fountain counters throughout New Orleans was surely a treat fit for the gods. Nectar syrup, a bright pink concoction that tastes of vanilla and almonds, was an instant hit after the I.L. Lyons and Co. pharmaceutical supply business introduced the flavor in the late 19th century. The company sold the syrup to K&B Drugs, who made nectar its signature flavor, and other local drugstores followed with their own versions of the sweet beverage, from Walgreen’s to Waterbury’s to Bradley’s. The flavor is unique to New Orleans, and outside the area, you’d be hard pressed to find a similarly flavored product by that name. “Nectar in that particular flavor is synonymous with New Orleans,” says Frank Jackson, owner of the Old Town Soda Shop in Slidell. “I’ve trained people from Savannah to Washington State, and when they come here and see the pictures, it’s intriguing to them. It’s a flavor they’ve never heard of.” While soda fountains were once ubiquitous, they began to disappear after the 1950s, due in part to the introduction of bottled soft drinks. The nectar flavor 25 louisianacookin.com stuck around, though, mostly on the menus of local snowball stands and ice cream shops. Nectar syrup was even revived for a time in the 1990s and early 2000s by local businesswoman Susan Dunham, who produced and bottled nectar soda syrup after tracking down Lyons’ family members. Still, the best place to get a taste of this New Orleans soda fountain classic is at a local snowball stand or ice cream parlor. At the Old Town Soda Shop, Frank serves a variety of nectar-flavored items, including old-fashioned sodas, homemade ice cream, malts, and shakes. In New Orleans, folks can find it at The Creole Creamery, which sells nectar cream sodas topped with a scoop of ice cream, whipped cream, and a cherry. At Hansen’s Sno-Bliz, nectar cream has been on the menu since Ernest and Mary Hansen opened the snowball stand in 1939. To this day, nectar cream is Hansen’s most popular flavor among locals and adventurous tourists, and it is the subject of many a cherished childhood memory. Ashley Hansen Springgate, current owner and granddaughter of Mary and Ernest, fondly recalls her grandmother showing up to her birthday parties with giant pails full of nectar cream snowballs, which were quickly wiped out by her classmates. “We celebrate nectar cream here, for sure,” says Ashley. “I get stopped in the grocery store about our nectar. I love it. It brings back memories from my childhood. It’s the first snowball I have every summer— it has to be nectar cream.” NEW ORLEANS NECTAR THE CREOLE CREAMERY 4924 PRYTANIA ST. 6260 VICKSBURG ST. New Orleans CREOLECREAMERY.COM HANSEN’S SNO-BLIZ 4801 TCHOUPITOULAS ST. New Orleans 504.891.9788 SNOBLIZ.COM OLD TOWN SLIDELL SODA SHOP 301 COUSIN ST. Slidell 985.649.4806 SLIDELLSODASHOP.COM ANTIQUE NECTAR SYRUP AND SODA BOTTLES ON DISPLAY AT THE SOUTHERN FOOD & BEVERAGE MUSEUM IN NEW ORLEANS. C H E F ’ S TAB L E MEKONG MEETS THE MISSISSIPPI by caitlin watzke WHAT DO YOU get when you combine seasonal Louisiana ingredients with the funky flavors of Southeast Asia and the smokiness of a grill? Answer: a dining experience unlike any you’ve ever had. At the recently opened Marjie’s Grill in Mid-City New Orleans, Marcus Jacobs and Caitlin Carney are inspired by the local bounty and the street food of Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. At Marjie’s, simple, local ingredients are elevated to greatness over the fire of Marcus’s Santa Maria grill with grates that can be lowered and raised on pulleys. Smokey Charred Cabbage and Coal Roasted Sweet Potatoes—both standout favorites among customers— are cooked directly on the coals to achieve a deep, smoky flavor, while items like the Slow Grilled Pork are cooked above the fire until tender then lowered down to caramelize the outside. The couple met while working at Herbsaint in New Orleans, Marcus most recently as executive sous chef and Caitlin as a server. Originally from Wellesley, Massachusetts, Caitlin found her way to the Big Easy by way of Brooklyn, where she attended college. A native of Columbus, Ohio, Marcus came to New Orleans after cooking at Zuni Café in San Francisco and working in Japan. 27 louisianacookin.com Marjie’s Grill is situated along New Orleans’ Broad Street corridor, which has seen a commercial revitalization of sorts in recent years with the addition of new businesses. Once-abandoned buildings have been given new life, such as the former Schwegmann’s Super Market that is now a Whole Foods Market, or the historic warehouse that has been transformed into the Broad Theater. Marjie’s Grill 320 S. Broad St. • New Orleans 504.603.2234 • marjiesgrill.com Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 28 GRATE EXPECTATIONS At Marjie’s Grill, Marcus uses a Santa Maria grill to impart a noticeable but not overpowering smokiness to ingredients. The grill makes use of a pulley, which allows Marcus to apply different levels of heat by raising and lowering the grill grates. 29 louisianacookin.com “We kind of fell in love over Asian food,” Caitlin says. “That was one of our major common grounds, and we started cooking what we are doing now at home. It was the mix of Marcus barbecuing and us using fish sauce and chile and lemongrass. And then everyone was loving it, so we were like, ‘We should do a pop-up.’” The duo operated their pop-up, Sparklehorse Grill, for about two years before converting it to a brick-and-mortar location. In preparation, they trekked through Southeast Asia for nearly three months, immersing themselves in the food cultures of Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand, and taking note of what they wanted to incorporate into their menu. Prevalent in many of their dishes are fish sauce, cane syrup, garlic, chilies, and herbs, all of which lend vibrant flavor to the menu of grilled meats, seafood, and vegetables. In addition, the way of eating is also something Caitlin and Marcus carried over. At lunch, menu items are presented in a meatand-three format, which is something they saw a lot of during their trip. “When we were in Vietnam, they had these lunch carts that were like meat-and-threes, and we were like, ‘We should do this! This is genius— everything great on one plate,’” Caitlin says. Marcus adds, “That’s what I like about the lunch plates: you can get a little bit of everything, and all the pieces complement each other.” Dinner at Marjie’s is a similarly casual experience, with a menu divided into shareable plates like Slow Grilled Half Chicken and Charred Pork Shoulder Steak. On both menus, you’ll also find uncommon dishes like fried pig ear sandwiches on white bread and fried pig tails with green garlic-chile sauce. “If we put stuff like that on the menu, it’s not for shock value or anything,” Marcus says. “It’s because we’re confident that we’re serving this really great thing, and it happens that it’s something that you’re not going to get a lot of other places. It’s all stuff that we love.” If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary in New Orleans, you’ll find it at Marjie’s Grill. The flavor profile is unique and the ingredients familiar, and the combination makes for a truly one-of-a-kind menu that will keep you coming back for more. 5 dishes to try SMASHED CUCUMBERS SLOW GRILLED PORK CORNMEAL FRIED CHICKEN COAL ROASTED SWEET POTATOES SPRING VEGETABLE SALAD Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 30 DEADBEAT DAIQUIRI Frozen PARadise 6 WAYS TO BLENDER BLISS photography by jim bathie WE ALL HAVE OUR ways of making the most of soaring summer temperatures. South Louisiana is known for its frozen daiquiris, and now a new generation of bartenders is taking the craft to the next level. From brunch-darling Willa Jean’s Frosé to chill Bywater joint Cafe Henri’s Frozen Negroni, options for cooling off your afternoon abound. While many of these DEADBEAT DAIQUIRI MAKES 1 SERVING Recipe courtesy of Beachbum Berry, Beachbum Berry’s Latitude 29, New Orleans 1½ cups crushed ice 2 ounces aged Panamanian rum* 4 whole lychee nuts, shelled (drained if canned) 1 ounce fresh lime juice ½ ounce Simple Syrup (recipe on page 35) ½ ounce maraschino liqueur ¼ ounce Clément Mahina Coco coconut liqueur Dash Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters Garnish: pineapple wedge, plastic monkey, edible orchid drinks are original creations, a few of them show off expert skills of translating a classic for the modern palate, like the exotic Rubin “The Hurricane” Carter from Bourée. Whether you choose one of those, or a classic like The Palace Café’s Hemingway Cocktail, you’re in for a treat. 1. In the container of a blender, place ice, rum, nuts, lime juice, Simple Syrup, liqueurs, and bitters; blend at high speed until smooth, up to 20 seconds. Pour into a 12-ounce Pearl Diver glass.* Garnish with pineapple wedge on rim, speared with bamboo pick, plastic monkey, and edible orchid, if desired. *We used Caña Brava 7-Year-Old Reserva Añeja Rum. This Pearl Diver glass is available at Cocktail Kingdom, cocktailkingdom.com. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 34 Kirk Estopinal (left) and Neal Bodenheimer at Cafe Henri. HENRI’S FROZEN NEGRONI WILLA JEAN’S FROSÉ Y’ALL MAKES 4 SERVINGS MAKES 2 SERVINGS Recipe courtesy of Cafe Henri, New Orleans Recipe courtesy of Willa Jean, New Orleans 4 ounces Luxardo Bitter liqueur 4 ounces Oryza Gin 4 ounces sweet vermouth* ½ cup sugar 6 cups crushed ice Garnish: orange peel 4 ¾ ¼ 1. In the container of a blender, place Luxardo Bitter liqueur, gin, vermouth, and sugar; blend at high speed until sugar is fully incorporated. Add ice, and blend until smooth. Garnish with expressed orange peel, if desired. *We used Miro Vermut Rojo. cups ice cup rosé wine cup Simple Syrup (recipe follows) 1. In the container of a blender, place all ingredients; blend at high speed until smooth. Pour into glasses, and serve with straws. SIMPLE SYRUP IN A SMALL SAUCEPAN, BRING 1 CUP WATER AND 1 CUP SUGAR TO A BOIL, STIRRING UNTIL SUGAR IS DISSOLVED. LET COOL TO ROOM TEMPERATURE BEFORE USING. REFRIGERATE IN AN AIRTIGHT CONTAINER FOR UP TO 1 MONTH. MAKES 1½ CUPS. 35 louisianacookin.com WILLA JEAN’S FROSÉ Y’ALL RUBIN “THE HURRICANE” CARTER MAKES 1 SERVING Recipe courtesy of Bourrée, New Orleans 1½ cups ice 1 ounce Old New Orleans Crystal Rum 1 ounce Jasmine Earl Grey Sweet Tea Simple Syrup (recipe follows) ½ ounce fresh lemon juice ½ ounce passion fruit purée* ½ teaspoon Peychaud’s bitters 1. In the container of a blender, place all ingredients; blend at high speed until smooth. * We used El Sabor frozen passion fruit purée. If fresh passion fruit is available, process with a juicer, discarding solids. JASMINE EARL GREY SWEET TEA SIMPLE SYRUP MAKES 1¾ CUPS 1 2 3 cup water cups sugar Jasmine Earl Grey tea bags 1. In a small saucepan, bring 1 cup water and sugar to boil; stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, and let stand until cool. Add tea bags; cover and let steep for 12 hours at room temperature. Remove tea bags. Cover and chill up to 2 weeks. PALACE CAFÉ’S HEMINGWAY COCKTAIL MAKES 1 SERVING Recipe courtesy of Barry Himel, Palace Café, New Orleans 1 cup crushed ice 1½ ounces white rum* 1½ ounces Simple Syrup (recipe on page 35) ½ ounce Luxardo Maraschino liqueur 1 ounce fresh grapefruit juice 1 ounce fresh lime juice Garnish: grapefruit twist 1. In the container of a blender, place ice, rum, Simple Syrup, liqueur, and juices; blend at high speed until smooth. Pour into a glass, and garnish with a grapefruit twist, if desired. *We used Old New Orleans Crystal Rum. 37 louisianacookin.com GEORG A O'KEEFFE DAIQUIRI GEORGIA DA QU RI MAKES 1 SERVING Recipe courtesy of Abigail Gullo, Compère Lapin, New Orleans 1 1 1 1½ 2 2 cup dried hibiscus cup hot water cup sugar cups crushed ice ounces rosé wine ounces brewed hibiscus tea 1 ounce Cathead Honeysuckle vodka ½ ounce fresh lemon juice ½ ounce fresh lime juice ½ ounce St-Germain Garnish: fresh sage 1. In a large bowl, combine dried hibiscus and 1 cup hot water. Let stand for at least 20 minutes. Strain mixture through a ﬁne-mesh sieve, discarding solids. Add sugar, and stir until sugar is dissolved. Let hibiscus syrup cool to room temperature before using. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 month. 2. In the container of a blender, combine ice, wine, 2 ounces hibiscus syrup, tea, vodka, lemon juice, lime juice, and St-Germain; blend at high speed until smooth. Pour into a glass, and garnish with sage, if desired. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 38 recipes courtesy of chef michael nelson, gw ﬁns, new orleans NOTHING SAYS “SUMMER” quite like pristine Louisiana seafood. As the weather heats up, we turn to light, refreshing dishes that highlight the natural flavors of fresh catches from the Gulf of Mexico. This summer, celebrate the taste of fresh seafood with these four incredible recipes from Executive Chef Michael Nelson of GW Fins. At the French Quarter restaurant known for its wide array of topnotch seafood options, Michael uses seasonal ingredients to enhance the flavors and textures of the catches of the day. He has dedicated himself to a sustainable nose-to-tail approach, and encourages diners to try new and different cuts of fish—including heads, collars, ribs, and fins. His Fish Heads in Curry Broth (page 42) may look intimidating, but it’s actually a staff favorite at GW Fins, and Michael insists that the head is the most delicious part of the fish. These delectable recipes are guaranteed to impress your family and friends. From simple Pomegranate-Glazed Shrimp with Mango Salsa to an adventurous Whole Grilled Fish with Pineapple-Basil Glaze, these dishes are perfect for a casual meal or elegant party that you’ll be dreaming about all summer long. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 40 POMEGRANATE-GLAZED SHRIMP WITH MANGO SALSA MAKES ABOUT 4 SERVINGS 2 2 1 1 ¼ 2 1 2 ripe mangoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch pieces teaspoons thinly sliced fresh mint teaspoon honey ounce white rum cup pomegranate molasses tablespoons ﬁrmly packed brown sugar teaspoon cane vinegar pounds extra-jumbo fresh Louisiana shrimp, peeled and deveined (heads left on) Salt Ground black pepper Extra-virgin olive oil 1. Preheat oven to broil. 2. In a medium bowl, combine mango, mint, honey, and rum. 3. In a small saucepan, heat molasses over low heat; stir in brown sugar until dissolved. Remove from heat; add vinegar, and set aside. 4. Season shrimp with salt and pepper, and drizzle with oil. Broil 3 inches from heat until pink and ﬁrm, about 2 minutes per side. Remove from heat, and brush with pomegranate glaze, reserving extra glaze to drizzle on serving plates. Arrange shrimp on top of mango mixture, and drizzle with glaze. GET THERE GW FINS 808 Bienville St. New Orleans • 504.581.3467 gwﬁns.com 41 louisianacookin.com FISH HEADS IN CURRY BROTH MAKES 4 SERVINGS 2 1 1 1 tablespoons canola oil stalk lemongrass tablespoon grated fresh ginger (1-inch) cube fresh peeled galangal, thinly sliced (optional) 6 kaffir lime leaves 10 stems fresh cilantro 1 stalk celery, chopped ½ carrot, chopped 2 shallots, chopped 2 cups shrimp stock 2 teaspoons red curry paste 1 (13.5-ounce) can coconut cream 1 tablespoon ﬁrmly packed brown sugar Juice of 1 lime 1 tablespoon ﬁsh sauce 4 ﬁsh heads or 4 to 8 ﬁsh collars Salt Ground black pepper Extra-virgin olive oil Hot cooked jasmine rice 1. In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add lemongrass, ginger, galangal, lime leaves, cilantro, celery, carrot, and shallot. Cook, stirring constantly, until carrot is softened. 2. Add stock and curry paste, and bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes. Carefully transfer mixture to the container of a blender, and blend at high speed until smooth. Strain broth through a ﬁnemesh sieve, discarding solids. Return broth to Dutch oven, and add coconut cream, brown sugar, lime juice, and ﬁsh sauce. Bring to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. 3. Preheat oven to broil. 4. Season ﬁsh with salt and pepper, and drizzle with oil. Broil until lightly browned on both sides. Place ﬁsh heads in broth, and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Divide among serving bowls, and serve with jasmine rice. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 42 FIRECRACKER SAUCE MAKES ABOUT ⅔ CUP ½ ½ ½ ¼ ½ 3¾ 2 tablespoon katsuo mirin furikake tablespoon white sesame seeds tablespoon black sesame seeds teaspoon garlic powder cup garlic-chile sauce teaspoons shrimp paste tablespoons sesame oil 1. In a medium bowl, combine furikake, sesame seeds, and garlic powder. Add garlic-chile sauce and shrimp paste; slowly whisk in sesame oil. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. *Katsuo mirin furikake is a Japanese seasoning mixture of dried bonito and sesame seed that can be found in wellstocked grocers or Asian markets. GINGERY SLAW MAKES ABOUT 4 CUPS ½ ½ ¾ 2 ¼ ¾ ¼ 2 ½ ½ ½ ¼ ¼ FIRECRACKER TUNA TACOS MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS 1 2 1 avocado, halved and pitted tablespoons mayonnaise tablespoon prepared wasabi (optional) 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice ¼ teaspoon salt 1 pound sushi-grade yellowﬁn tuna, cut into ¼-inch cubes Firecracker Sauce (recipe follows) 32 miniature hard taco shells Gingery Slaw (recipe follows) Garnish: wasabi tobiko 43 louisianacookin.com 1. In the container of a blender, combine avocado, mayonnaise, wasabi (if using), lime juice, and salt; blend at high speed until smooth. 2. In a large bowl, combine tuna and 2½ tablespoons Firecracker Sauce. Taste, and add additional Firecracker Sauce, if desired. 3. Place 1 heaping tablespoon tuna mixture in bottom of each taco shell. Add avocado mixture and Gingery Slaw. Garnish with wasabi tobiko, if desired. cup hot water cup sugar teaspoon salt tablespoons pickled ginger cup pickled ginger juice teaspoon rice vinegar teaspoon sesame oil cups thinly sliced Napa cabbage cup thinly sliced red pepper cup thinly sliced yellow pepper cup julienned carrot cup thinly sliced green onion cup chopped fresh cilantro 1. In a medium bowl, combine ½ cup hot water, sugar, and salt, stirring until dissolved. Let cool slightly. 2. In the container of a blender, combine sugar mixture, ginger, ginger juice, vinegar, and sesame oil. Blend at high speed until ginger is ﬁnely chopped. Cover and refrigerate until cold, up to 1 week. 3. In a large bowl, combine cabbage, peppers, carrot, green onion, and cilantro. Add 1 cup dressing mixture, and toss to combine. WHOLE GRILLED FISH F SH WITH PINEAPPLE-BASIL GLAZE MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS 1 3 1 kaffir lime leaf, thinly sliced tablespoons fresh lime juice teaspoon thinly sliced fresh cilantro 1 teaspoon thinly sliced fresh mint leaves 1 teaspoon sugar Pinch salt ¼ cup butter, softened 1 cup pineapple juice 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil leaves 4 (1- to 2-pound) whole fresh ﬁsh, gutted and scaled Salt Ground black pepper Canola oil ½ cantaloupe, peeled, seeded, quartered, and thinly sliced ½ honeydew, peeled, seeded, quartered, and thinly sliced ½ Crenshaw melon, peeled, seeded, quartered, and thinly sliced 1. In a small bowl, combine lime leaf, lime juice, cilantro, mint, sugar, and salt. Set aside. 2. In another small bowl, place butter. In a small saucepan, cook pineapple juice over medium heat until reduced to ¼ cup, about 10 minutes. Pour over butter; add basil, and stir until combined. 3. With a sharp knife, carefully score through skin of ﬁsh about ½ inch deep in a cross-hatch pattern. Season ﬁsh with salt and pepper. Rub outside of ﬁsh with oil. 4. Spray grill rack with nonﬂammable cooking spray. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). Cook ﬁsh for 7 to 8 minutes per side. Do not move ﬁsh until turning (this will reduce sticking). 5. On serving plates, overlap melon slices. Drizzle lime mixture over melon. Place grilled ﬁsh on a platter, and top with pineapple glaze. Place whole ﬁsh over melon, and serve immediately. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 44 M A S T E R M I N D S CHEF JOHN FOLSE AND HIS PASSION FOR COLLECTING by patrick dunne | recipes courtesy of chef john folse | photography by jim bathie c ollectors, like artists and fishermen, usually start their tales with a recent success. Ask Chef John Folse what he’s been collecting lately and first you’re likely to hear a guilty guffaw, followed by a disclaimer about being too busy in his internationally renowned kitchens at R’evolution (New Orleans) and Seafood R’evolution (Jackson, Mississippi), or with some gigantic new book he’s planning. Knowing he can’t fib to me for very long, he launches into a confessional narrative that would dizzy any old padre, leaving even this jaded antiques dealer with vertigo. The great English collector and art historian Sir Kenneth Clark once claimed there were only two types of collectors: those looking to complete a series and those longing to possess things that bewitch them. Having spent most of my life around collectors of one sort or another, I’m fascinated by the inner wellsprings of the instinct. My father subscribed to only one commandment: a treasure, once acquired, could never be relinquished. How horrified he would be to see the ease with which, in my professional life, I buy and sell beautiful things I love. Talking to Chef Folse, one realizes immediately this passion runs deep, is abiding, and reveals the heart of a serious and romantic collector. He is that rare critter that combines both instincts: at once beguiled by a variety of things, but also obsessed with completing series within those enchantments. When I ask him how often he sells objects off to upgrade or go in new directions, he is horrified. “Never!” he fires back. Having hit a mark, I use this fidelity to his curated hoard to encourage him to identify themes in his collecting. Unsurprisingly, he sees the pivot point as food. Asked to recall exactly when he began collecting, Chef Folse responds with a reverie of being in London, opening the first Louisiana-referenced restaurant in England, with weekends to explore the countryside. There he encountered an eccentric shopkeeper in Hungerford at Below Stairs. After buying his first copper cooking pots, Chef Folse says it felt like a conversion experience, suddenly realizing the beauty of old domestic utensils, their craftsmanship and unexpected detail, both utilitarian and lovely. I intuit, however, it was simply an epiphany, because he was already “of the faith.” 45 louisianacookin.com Those first pots have expanded into series of every imaginable vessel. “You know it took me a while to notice old jelly pans, then I realized I needed every size,” he says. Of course, the same is true of frying pans, and daubières (braising pans), and boudin pots, fish poachers, cream bowls, long-handled iron pots, and so on. He discovered a tournebroche (mechanical spit) and went off, filling his fireplaces with all sorts of automated contraptions. Hearth cooking then made him realize he needed firebacks, and iron tools and bellows—not just one, but one in every size. The wild enthusiasm that makes his passion so boyish is the verb most often chosen—never “I want,” but always “I need.” Also, there is a fervor to know everything about the objects he considers—to know their histories, their origins, their secrets. When I try to get him to talk about the true beginnings of all this, he digresses. “I’ve recently bought a fine old enamel stove, but here’s the thing: it’s part gas and part wood-burning. How great is that?” His glee is infectious, but I see an opening. “Why on earth would you get a stove like that?” I ask. “It sounds like a lot of work! What kind of stove did you grow up with, by the way?” And here a key turns in the lock. He stops dead in the conversation, the curtain rises, and his grandmother’s kitchen in St. James Parish resurrects in every detail. The lovely links between collecting and nostalgia show how this ardent, joyous pursuit of things somehow yokes both the beautiful and the melencholy. So when I pose 47 louisianacookin.com the question as to what Chef Folse first, first, first collected—as a child, long before the conquests in New Orleans or London or Paris—he shyly says “tinder.” “My grandmother Regina Zeringue cooked on a wood stove, and she sent children out for tinder. We learned to be careful, and choose only the best—first, because we wanted our grandmother’s approval, and second, we had learned the vital connection between that fire and the morning biscuits!” There is a glow like that fire in his voice, revealing that new stove is really an old memory, and the crocks and pans in that faraway kitchen a model for what he now “needs.” One recollection leads to another. Remembering old Mr. Ordoyne, the itinerant grocer who arrived with his wagon full of provisions and trinkets, becomes an occasion for a guilty admission. While his grandmother chanted her orders in Cajun-French across a cypress table as Mr. Ordoyne showed her enamel spoons in blue, gray, and black, a small boy made his first acquisition, slipping one into his pocket unobserved. It was secreted away in his box of treasures, like the trebuchets his grandfather built to capture the colorful teepops that filled the swamps. “I lost that spoon along the way—I really wish I had it now, I need it!” His collections include some very significant nonmaterial things as well. Chef Folse embarked on one of the most significant cultural archeological projects in Louisiana. He’s traveled the bayous and back roads of the state, urging people to pull out their recipes and share the stories of the foods they remember. His congeries of recollections have been preserved in print and television, and may be his most spectacular catalogue of treasures. Most precious for him are the women who “have made us uniquely what we are— Alligator Annie at her swamp cabin, Wylma Dusenbery and her singing family, and so many others!” And suddenly it is not just the story of John Folse's pots and pans, or of his Waguespack/Zeringue family, or of a seemingly vanishing Cajun/Creole world. It’s not even the story of the Louisiana he so dearly loves. It is a human story. The story of a man lovingly looking at yesterday while contributing to tomorrow, whose unshakable wisdom is that family and faith, history and passion are all accentuated, validated, and expressed in the collection of these artifacts, which he knows are not merely shards of the past, but triumphs and touchstones that contain parables for lives well lived. BREAST OF DUCK WITH BLACKBERRY DEMI-GLACE 2. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Remove duck breasts from marinade, and pat dry. Add to pan, skin side down, and cook until light brown. Continue cooking, turning occasionally, until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 165°. Remove, and keep warm, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings in pan. 3. Add shallot and remaining ½ tablespoon garlic to pan; cook for 2 minutes. Add blackberries and remaining ¼ cup port; cook until reduced by half. Add demi-glace; cook until reduced by a quarter. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 4. Slice duck breasts. To serving plates, add a generous portion of blackberry sauce. Top with duck, and garnish with micro greens, if desired. FRENCH FIRE-ROASTED CH CHICKEN CKEN MAKES ABOUT 8 SERVINGS 1 parables for lives well lived. BREAST OF DUCK WITH BLACKBERRY DEMI-GLACE MAKES ABOUT 6 SERVINGS 6 Long Island or mallard duck breasts ¾ cup port wine, divided 1 tablespoon cane syrup 1 dried bay leaf 1½ tablespoons minced garlic, divided 10 black peppercorns 6 fresh basil leaves, torn 4 sprigs fresh thyme 6 fresh sage leaves, torn 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste 1 teaspoon hot sauce 1 tablespoon minced shallot ½ pint fresh blackberries 1 cup veal demi-glace Ground black pepper, to taste Garnish: micro greens 1. In a large bowl, combine duck breasts, ½ cup port, cane syrup, bay leaf, 1 tablespoon garlic, peppercorns, basil leaves, thyme, sage leaves, 2 teaspoons salt, and hot sauce. Toss well to fully coat meat with marinade. Refrigerate for 3 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour. 49 louisianacookin.com (5- to 6-pound) roasting chicken, giblets reserved, rinsed and patted dry Kosher salt Ground black pepper Granulated garlic 1 large bunch fresh thyme 1 lemon, halved 1 small head garlic, halved crosswise 1 large yellow onion, peeled and thickly sliced 20 sprigs fresh thyme, divided 4 carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces 8 Yukon Gold or tiny red potatoes, halved 1 fennel bulb, tops removed and cut into wedges 10 cloves garlic ¼ cup olive oil ½ cup butter, melted 1. Preheat oven to 425°. 2. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers from chicken. Liberally rub inside of chicken with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Stuff cavity with bunch of thyme, lemon, and garlic head. Season outside of chicken with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic, rubbing well into skin. Tie legs together with kitchen string, and tuck wing tips under body of chicken. 3. Place onion slices and 10 sprigs fresh thyme on bottom of a roasting pan. Season with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Place chicken on top of onion and thyme. 4. In a large bowl, combine carrot, potato, fennel, garlic cloves, oil, and remaining 10 thyme sprigs. Season with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic, tossing to coat well. Arrange seasoned vegetable mixture around chicken in roasting pan. Pour melted butter over chicken. 5. Cover and roast 1½ hours. Uncover and cook until skin turns brown and crispy, and a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 165°, 15 to 20 minutes more. Remove roasting pan from oven, cover with foil, and let rest for 20 minutes. Slice chicken, transfer to a platter, and serve with roasted vegetables. Grilled Summer u F E A S Tu 51 louisianacookin.com photography by caroline smith | styling by beth k. seeley recipe development and food styling by elizabeth stringer WE CELEBRATE SUMMER’S bounty with bright flavors, light sauces, and lots of fresh, local vegetables. Since the grill is a centerpiece of hotweather cooking, we used it for most of the components in this family feast, from sourdough toast to the well-seasoned pork steaks. If you wanted to take it even further, you could halve and grill the lemon for the Chimichurri Sauce to add a smoky sweetness to the lemon’s zip. This simple Fresh Blackberry Granita is our idea of the perfect ending on a warm summer evening. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 52 CRISPY FETA TOASTS WITH PANCETTA MAKES 12 SERVINGS 1 (10-inch) loaf round fresh sourdough bread, cut into ½-inch-thick slices Olive oil, for brushing 12 thin round slices pancetta 1 (8-ounce) package feta cheese, sliced ¼ inch thick 1 bunch fresh basil, chiffonade Balsamic vinegar glaze, for drizzling Garnish: basil leaves 1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). 2. Brush bread with oil. Grill bread until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes per side. Remove, and let cool.* Cut each slice in half diagonally. 3. Preheat oven to 450°. Line a baking sheet with foil. 4. Arrange pancetta slices in a single layer on prepared pan. Bake until golden, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined wire rack, and let stand until crisp. 5. Top each slice of bread with feta and pancetta. Sprinkle with basil, and drizzle with balsamic glaze. Garnish with basil, if desired, and serve immediately. *Reserve grilled bread ends for croutons in Summer Tomato Salad (recipe on page 55). GRILLED EGGPLANT WITH HERBED RICOTTA Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 54 SUMMER TOMATO SALAD 55 louisianacookin.com 1. Spray grill rack with nonﬂammable PORK STEAKS WITH CHIMICHURRI AND BALSAMIC FIG GLAZE MAKES 6 SERVINGS ½ 3 1 1 1 1 1 6 cup ﬁrmly packed brown sugar tablespoons kosher salt tablespoon chili powder teaspoon ground black pepper teaspoon onion powder teaspoon garlic powder teaspoon cayenne pepper (½-inch-thick) pork sirloin cutlets (about 2 pounds) Chimichurri Sauce (recipe follows) Balsamic Fig Glaze (recipe follows) cooking spray. Preheat grill to high heat (400° to 450°). 2. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, salt, chili powder, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and cayenne. 3. Pat pork dry with paper towels, and sprinkle both sides with seasoning. Grill pork over direct heat, turning every 5 minutes, until a meat thermometer registers 145°, about 20 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes. Serve with Chimichurri Sauce and Balsamic Fig Glaze. CHIMICHURRI SAUCE MAKES ABOUT 2 CUPS 1 1 ½ cup ﬁnely chopped fresh parsley cup extra-virgin olive oil cup ﬁnely chopped fresh cilantro ¼ 2 1 1 1 cup fresh lemon juice tablespoons minced garlic tablespoon kosher salt tablespoon dried oregano tablespoon crushed red pepper 1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. BALSAMIC FIG GLAZE MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP ¾ ¼ cup ﬁg preserves cup balsamic vinegar 1. In a small saucepan, bring preserves and vinegar to a boil over medium heat. Serve warm. FRESH BLACKBERRY GRAN GRANITA TA MAKES 12 SERVINGS 2 (6-ounce) containers fresh blackberries, rinsed and patted dry 1 cup sugar 5 cups water, divided ¼ cup fresh lemon juice Garnish: lemon peel 1. In a medium saucepan, bring blackberries, sugar, and 1 cup water to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer until blackberries are softened, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat, and lightly mash until berries are broken down. 2. Pour mixture through a ﬁne-mesh sieve, discarding solids. Stir in lemon juice and remaining 4 cups water. Pour mixture into a metal 13x9-inch baking pan, and place in freezer. Scrape surface and edges every 45 minutes until mixture is frozen and no liquid remains, 3 to 4 hours. Garnish with lemon peel, if desired. SUMMER TOMATO SALAD MAKES ABOUT 6 CUPS ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 teaspoon honey 2 cups fresh grilled sourdough croutons, reserved from Crispy Feta Toasts with Pancetta (recipe on page 53) 2 pints cherry tomatoes,* halved and whole 1 medium red onion, chopped 1 clove garlic, minced 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, torn 1. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and honey. 2. In a large bowl, combine croutons, tomatoes, onion, garlic, and cilantro. Add dressing, tossing to coat. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Serve immediately. *We used Sangria Tomato Medley and Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes. GRILLED EGGPLANT WITH HERBED RICOTTA MAKES 6 SERVINGS 1 (15-ounce) container whole-milk ricotta cheese 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint 2 teaspoons lemon zest 1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 clove garlic, pressed 3 medium eggplant, cut into ½-inch-thick slices (about 3 pounds) 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 teaspoon soy sauce Quick Pickled Squash (recipe follows) Summer SOUNDTRACK 1. In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, parsley, chives, tarragon, mint, zest, pepper, and garlic. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. 2. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). 3. Brush both sides of eggplant slices with oil and soy sauce. Grill until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side. 4. Arrange eggplant on a serving platter. Top with Quick Pickled Squash and herbed ricotta cheese. Serve immediately. BLUES MY NAUGHTY SWEETIE GIVES TO ME SIDNEY BECHET MARDI GRAS IKE QUEBEC QUICK PICKLED SQUASH MAKES ABOUT 4 CUPS 2 1½ 1 2 2 ½ 2 medium yellow squash, cut into ¼-inch-thick rounds teaspoons mustard seed teaspoon chopped fresh dill dried bay leaves cups water cup distilled white vinegar tablespoons sugar 1. In a 32-ounce glass jar with a tight-ﬁtting lid, combine squash, mustard seed, dill, and bay leaves. 2. In a small stockpot, bring 2 cups water, vinegar, and sugar to a boil over high heat; pour hot liquid into jar. Seal with lid, and let stand until cool. Refrigerate until cold, and store for up to 2 weeks. WAY DOWN YONDER IN NEW ORLEANS ERROLL GARNER WALKING THROUGH NEW ORLEANS PETE FOUNTAIN RED BEANS AND RICE LAKE CITY STOMPERS Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 58 Margaritaville Resort Casino Bossier City LOUISIANA’S BEST JACKPOT louisiana’s best casino dining L ouisiana is a jackpot for food lovers, so it’s no surprise that some remarkable dining can be found at casinos. Throughout the Bayou State, they feature restaurants led by some of the state's best chefs, who are using their culinary chops to take casino dining to new levels. Forget the stale all-you-can-eat buffets of the past—casinos are upping the ante to bring fresh, exciting dining options to gamblers and foodies alike. Whether you’re craving an extraordinary steak dinner, authentic international cuisine, or a variety of outstanding items from a buffet, Louisiana’s casinos have something to offer every budget and appetite. Not only that, but the quality of the food being served is impeccable, with discerning chefs focusing on both locally sourced ingredients and top-quality products from around the world. Whether you’re celebrating a big win or simply looking to try something new, here are our top picks for the best casino restaurants from New Orleans to Lake Charles and beyond. With an endless array of options, you’re sure to have an unforgettable dining experience. 7 · OF LOUISIANA'S BEST · CASINO DINING OPTIONS L’AUBERGE CASINO & HOTEL BATON ROUGE 777 L’Auberge Ave. Baton Rouge 225.224.4142 lbatonrouge.com HARRAH’S NEW ORLEANS 228 Poydras St. New Orleans 504.533.6111 caesars.com/harrahs-new-orleans L’AUBERGE CASINO RESORT LAKE CHARLES 777 Avenue L’Auberge Lake Charles 337.395.7565 llakecharles.com GOLDEN NUGGET LAKE CHARLES 3202 Nelson Rd. Lake Charles 337.508.4103 goldennugget.com/lakecharles HORSESHOE BOSSIER CITY HOTEL AND CASINO 711 Horseshoe Blvd. Bossier City 800.895.0711 caesars.com/horseshoebossier-city MARGARITAVILLE RESORT CASINO BOSSIER CITY 777 Margaritaville Way Bossier City 855.346.2489 margaritavillebossiercity.com PARAGON CASINO RESORT 711 Paragon Place Marksville 800.946.1946 paragoncasinoresort.com HIGH ROLLER IN PARADISE M argaritaville Resort Casino Bossier City is a sure bet for incredible dining experiences with beautiful vistas of the Red River. Whether you’re in the mood for steaks, seafood, Vietnamese classics, or poolside tapas, there’s something for every appetite. Bamboo Asian Café, which opened last summer, offers some of the best traditional Vietnamese food in Shreveport-Bossier. Menu highlights include favorites like vermicelli bowls and pho, which is very popular among guests. “We do our presentation [of pho] a little bit different,” says Margaritaville’s Executive Chef Thomas Weisburn. “We actually pour the broth at the table…and then we have all the veggies on the side. You don’t walk away hungry.” For fine dining in an intimate riverfront setting, Jimmy’s Seafood & Steak is an excellent option. The menu features prime steaks and fresh Gulf seafood, as well as local ingredients, including Ruston peaches, Hammond strawberries, and Louisiana cane syrup. CAPITAL GEM L ocated on a picturesque bend of the Mississippi River just a few minutes from downtown Baton Rouge, the newly built L’Auberge Casino & Hotel Baton Rouge offers sizzling steaks and fine wines at 18 Steak. Chef Jared Tees, a 2004 Louisiana Cookin’ Chef to Watch, honors the 18th state of the union by serving up Louisianainspired dishes such as Creole Seafood Cioppino, Redfish on the Half Shell, and Trout Amandine. Start your dining experience with one of 18 Steak’s incredible appetizers, such as Fried Gulf Oysters with Green Tomato Chow-Chow and Horseradish Sauce or Louisiana BBQ Shrimp with Lemon, Black Pepper, Baguette, and Ghost Pepper Caviar. Meat-eaters will enjoy Cajun-themed charcuterie options like tasso, rillettes, and andouille. Soups and salads feature Louisiana flavors, too; the Belle River Crawfish Bisque and Redstick Salad with sugar cane vinaigrette and pepita pralines are just two flavor-packed choices. Classic BBQ Shrimp make an excellent addition to one of the restaurant’s signature steaks, which include filet mignon, prime rib eye, prime dry-aged T-bone, cowboy rib eye, and prime New York strip. Once you’ve tasted the perfection of these savory steaks or fresh seafood dishes, dig into one of 18 Steak’s incredible desserts, like crème brûlée with local honey, 18 Chocolate (a selection of 18 chocolate varieties), and seasonal berries or Cappucino Cheesecake. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 62 AVOYELLES HIDEAWAY T ry your luck at Paragon Casino Resort in Marksville where you’ll find a wide variety of exceptional fine dining and casual cuisine. With options like fresh seafood, prime steaks, Cajun classics, and Southern favorites, you’re sure to have a memorable meal. Legends Steakhouse features a variety of excellent cuts of beef and fresh seafood in an upscale setting. Crab cakes, fried green tomatoes, and Shrimp Michael (bacon-wrapped jumbo Gulf shrimp) are just a few appetizer highlights, while the steak menu features favorites like the Tomahawk Bone-In Rib Eye and Roast of Prime Rib (which is only available on Friday and Saturday until it runs out). For a casual lunch, you can’t beat Tamahka Grill, which overlooks the resort’s golf course, or Big Daddy E’s, which serves Louisiana favorites like seafood po’ boys, crawfish étouffée, and oysters on the half shell. Sample a little bit of everything with Big Daddy’s Seafood Combo, which comes with fried shrimp, oysters, catfish, and a crawfish cake alongside fries, hushpuppies, Creole slaw, and corn maque choux. The Market Place Buffet keeps their offerings exciting with specials each day, like Sunday Cochon de Lait and Thursday Cajun Crossroads, which features items like boudin and alligator sauce piquant. 63 louisianacookin.com LUCKY HORSESHOE T here’s no going wrong with any of the amazing dining options at the Horseshoe Bossier City Hotel and Casino. From Asian cuisine to steaks to a seriously impressive buffet, the odds are good you’ll find something you love. Try the best-selling Mongolian Beef at the upscale Four Winds or pho from the casual Jasmine’s Noodle Bar for a taste of some of the best Cantonese and Vietnamese food in the area, or visit The Spread for a legendary buffet dining experience. The buffet showcases hand-cut steaks, house-made desserts, and a rotating section that features a different type of cuisine every three months. At Jack Binion’s Steak House, customers go crazy for the Surf & Turf, Lolli-Pop Lamb Chops (blackened and served with smoked tasso ham and cheddar grits), and the Steak à la Oscar—a 7-ounce fi let topped with hollandaise sauce and served over au gratin potatoes and colossal crabmeat—but the service is top notch, too. “The number one thing that keeps people coming back is the service. Everyone comes here to dine, but we pride ourselves on service here,” says Executive Chef Yahya Lockett, adding, “We do a lot of specialty menu requests. Guests call in ahead of time, and we try our best to go out of our way for them. If we can get it, we’re going to try our best to do it.” CRESCENT CITY JACKPOT A t the foot of Canal Street in New Orleans, Harrah’s Besh Steak is an oddson favorite for playful, Louisianainspired steakhouse fare. The restaurant from Chef John Besh features a menu of starters, mains, and sides created with Louisiana ingredients and techniques. Whereas traditional steakhouse menus typically only offer steaks à la carte, Besh Steak serves steaks as composed dishes with sides and sauces. Even appetizers have the wow factor at Besh Steak. Spicy Pork-Stuffed Chicken Wings are smoked under a glass dome, which is removed tableside for an impressive start to the meal. Customer favorites include items like barbecued shrimp and the Prime New York strip, dry-aged 30 days and served with blue cheese butter, bordelaise, and Abita Amber-battered onion rings. As for Executive Chef Paul Robert’s recommendations, he has a few suggestions for diners. “I’d order the barbecued shrimp to start, for sure,” Paul says. “We have a double-cut pork chop that we brine, and it comes with corn and crab orzo. It’s jumbo lump crabmeat, corn, and orzo tossed in a cream-based sauce with butter and cheese. That’s definitely the dish I would choose. Even though we’re a steakhouse, I’d go with the pork chop. And then for dessert, the bread pudding with toffee sauce, pecans, and Irish whiskey ice cream.” Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 64 GLOWING EMBERS L ocated inside L’Auberge Casino Resort Lake Charles, Ember Grille & Wine Bar serves up modern steakhouse favorites in an upscale lodge-theme atmosphere. The restaurant, which debuted at the casino in 2011, offers a menu of top quality beef and seafood alongside an impressive list of more than 200 bottles of wine. Chef de Cuisine Brock Granger keeps the menu fresh with stunning presentations and by making the most GOLDEN TICKET of seasonal ingredients. “We are really trying to focus on seasonality and change the menu a ake your winnings to one of the amazing restaurants awaiting you at Golden Nugget Lake Charles, where you can enjoy everything from authentic Italian cuisine to the fi nest Gulf seafood and more in magnificent prime beef, fresh seafood, and an extensive wine list. Start your dinner with classic oysters Rockefeller or Maple Glazed Quail, then dig into sumptuous entrées like Gulf Red Snapper with jumbo lump crab and sherried lobster sauce, Fried Lobster few times a year,” Brock says. “That surroundings. Transport your taste buds to Italy as you dig into classic pasta dishes, pizzas, and other traditional specialties at Grotto. Spaghetti Bolognese, Ravioli alla Vodka, and Shrimp & Crab Capellini are just a few highlights of the pasta menu. Gulf seafood makes appearances in several entrées, such as the Cioppino and the Snapper Romano. The award-winning menu at Vic & Anthony’s Steakhouse offers Mac & Cheese, or any of the USDA prime steaks. With seven different stations daily, the buffet is hard to beat for the diner who wants to try something new. Here, you’ll fi nd Cajun classics like freshly made boudin, as well as a carving station with smoked brisket and cuisine from various areas of the world. End your meal on a sweet note with one of the in-house desserts, including pies, cupcakes, cookies, and more. something T 65 louisianacookin.com keeps us from resting on our laurels, and it makes us be more creative and keeps us going with the thought process behind the menu.” This is especially exciting for Ember’s regulars, who can expect new and different when they come in. In addition to those seasonal additions, menu mainstays include a 20-ounce Bone-In Rib Eye, Bacon-Wrapped BBQ Shrimp, and Sea Scallops with Seaweed Salad, Leeks, and Beurre Noisette. When it’s in season, Brock recommends his halibut dish for seafood lovers. “We get halibut flown in two to three times a week, so it’s always fresh, and people seem to really enjoy that dish,” he says. L’AUBERGE BAKED OYSTERS MAKES 6 TO 8 SERVINGS Recipe courtesy of L’Auberge Lake Charles 3 4 4 8 ¼ 2 2 2 tablespoons olive oil shallots, minced cloves garlic, minced cups fresh spinach cup Pernod cups butter, room temperature cups grated Parmesan cheese cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs) Salt Ground black pepper 24 fresh oysters on the half shell 1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic; cook until fragrant. Add spinach and Pernod; cook until spinach is wilted. 2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with paper towels. Place spinach on prepared pan, and let cool completely. Blot with a clean towel to remove excess moisture. 3. In the work bowl of a food processor, place butter, cheese, bread crumbs, and spinach; process until combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 4. On parchment paper, place ¼ of mixture, and roll into a log. Repeat three times with remaining mixture. Freeze logs until very ﬁrm. 5. Preheat broiler. Place rack 3 inches from heating element. 6. Slice seasoned butter into ½-inch-thick pieces. Place one piece on each oyster. Reserve remaining butter for another use. Broil until golden brown. Serve immediately. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 66 69 louisianacookin.com Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 70 LO CAL PAN T RY JAM ON recipe development and food styling by janet lambert IN LOUISIANA, WE ARE FORTUNATE to have plenty of superb locally grown ingredients right at our fingertips, and Baton Rouge resident Ashley Andermann is making full use of the state’s seasonal bounty with GrinningJupiter Jammery. Ashley has been canning her whole life, but it wasn’t until about seven years ago that she decided to turn her casual canning hobby into a full-time business. A photographer by trade, Ashley had an Etsy shop where she and her husband, a metal sculptor, sold their artwork. Ashley’s jam business took off when she listed 71 louisianacookin.com her jams and jellies on the site, so she and her husband converted a 1963 Avion travel trailer into a kitchen space for Ashley to make her products. Today, Ashley creates close to 100 different flavors of jams, jellies, preserves, pepper jellies, pickles, mustards, syrups, and fruit butters. She tries to use as much local produce as possible, showcasing familiar ingredients like satsumas, pecans, strawberries, and figs. Ashley picks wild produce from her own garden in Baton Rouge and from her in-laws’ garden in Mississippi, where she gets blackberries, muscadines, scuppernongs, crabapples, and more. During fig season, Ashley travels to the Eunice-Mamou area to pick figs from the same tree her grandmother and greatgrandmother used to make their preserves. “That’s where I first learned to make preserves,” Ashley says. “I was making fig preserves and strawberry fig preserves with my dad’s mom, and so it’s pretty sweet to still be able to get the same figs I got when I was little, but also use the same recipes I used with her.” Over time, Ashley has created some new variations of her grandmother’s recipes, experimenting with ingredients until she finds flavor combinations that work. In addition to fruit, Ashley incorporates products like balsamic vinegars and teas from Red Stick Spice Co. in Baton Rouge. She often comes up with new flavors by thinking about how she can use ingredients in different ways, and she also takes recommendations from customers. In fact, GrinningJupiter’s current habanero pepper jelly came about as a result of customers who wanted a spicier product. “Most recipes call for you to use a habanero pepper and then a mixture between red, yellow, and orange bell peppers. I don’t. I use just straight up habanero peppers,” Ashley says. “It definitely has some heat to it, but I don’t find that it’s so overpowering that you can’t keep eating it.” GrinningJupiter’s pepper jellies are the perfect addition to a variety of dishes, like the sweet and spicy chicken wings featured here. “Most people put them over cream cheese, and they’re delicious over cream cheese with crackers, but there are so many things you can do cooking-wise with pepper jelly that I really think people are starting to realize,” Ashley says. “I always tell people the blueberry pepper jelly and blackberry pepper jelly are awesome as a glaze on a pork loin or pork chop, but also with venison, and it’s really yummy. I like to use the habanero or mango habanero if I’m doing fish or shrimp tacos. It makes a nice glaze on the shrimp or fish, and it also gives it a nice heat.” WHERE TO FIND IT JUPITER GRINNINGER JAMM Y Brew Ha-Ha! Baton Rouge Lafayette Farmers & Artisans Market at the Horse Farm Red Stick Spice Co. Baton Rouge Online etsy.com/shop/grinning jupiter SEE RECIPE FOR SWEET AND SPICY HABANERO HOT WINGS ON NEXT PAGE Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 72 SWEET AND SPICY HABANERO HOT WINGS MAKES 4 SERVINGS 1 2 1 ½ ½ ¼ 2 teaspoon fennel seeds tablespoons all-purpose ﬂour teaspoon salt teaspoon granulated garlic teaspoon ground cumin teaspoon ground black pepper pounds chicken wingettes and drumettes ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted ¼ cup hot pepper jelly, melted* 2 tablespoons Cajun hot sauce Garnish: sliced green onion 1. Preheat oven to 475°. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with heavy-duty foil, and spray with cooking spray. 2. Grind fennel seeds in a mortar and pestle or electric spice grinder. In a large bowl, whisk together fennel, ﬂour, salt, garlic, cumin, and pepper. Add chicken, tossing to coat. Arrange chicken, skin side down, in a single layer on prepared pan. Lightly spray with cooking spray. 3. Roast for 15 minutes. Turn wings, and roast until browned and crispy, about 15 minutes more. 4. In a large bowl, combine melted butter, melted pepper jelly, and hot sauce. Add hot chicken wings, tossing well to coat. Place chicken in a serving bowl. Garnish with green onion, if desired. *We used GrinningJupiter Jammery Homemade Habanero Pepper Jelly. S W E E TS TARTE NOUVELLE photography by stephanie welbourne steele | styling by lucy herndon recipe development and food styling by elizabeth stringer THERE IS SOMETHING magical about cast-iron pans, isn’t there? They’re full of tasty memories and hold our hopes for future meals. The same characteristics that create crispy bacon help turn ripe summer peaches into a masterpiece. In this tarte tatin, we swapped apples for peaches, and the result is sweet, satisfying, and—with the help of some rich vanilla ice cream—completely decadent. PEACH TARTE TATIN MAKES 6 SERVINGS 5 2 ⅔ ¼ ½ to 6 fresh peaches, sliced into 8 wedges each tablespoons fresh lemon juice cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided cup butter (17.3-ounce) package frozen puff pastry, thawed 1. In a medium bowl, combine peaches, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons sugar. 2. In a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, melt butter over medium heat, swirling to coat sides of pan. Sprinkle remaining ⅔ cup sugar over butter. Place peaches in tight concentric circles on top of sugar. Cook, without stirring, until butter mixture turns a caramel color, 20 to 30 minutes. 3. Preheat oven to 400°. 4. Remove skillet from heat, and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Place puff pastry over fruit. Using a spatula or fork, gently fold edges down between inside edge of pan and fruit, being careful, as pan is still very hot. 5. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes. Carefully invert onto a serving plate. Reposition any peach slices that may have stuck to pan. Let cool on plate for 10 minutes before serving. THIS TIME OF YEAR, THE THOUGHT OF BASKETS BRIMMING WITH RUSTON PEACHES FILLS OUR MINDS WITH WONDER. TRY AS WE MIGHT, WE CAN NEVER GET ENOUGH. Q U I C K & E ASY SPECIAL SKILLET recipe development and food styling by janet lambert There aren’t many vegetables that say ‘summer’ quite like okra. These pods find their way into all sorts of dishes throughout the season—from cornbread to gumbo and everything in between. This year, we can’t get enough of simply skillet roasting the okra, and serving it with a spicy and savory sauce. SKILLET-ROASTED OKRA WITH SPICY MISO SAUCE SPICY MISO SAUCE MAKES ABOUT ½ CUP MAKES 4 SERVINGS 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 pound small or medium fresh okra pods, halved lengthwise ¼ teaspoon salt, divided 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided Spicy Miso Sauce (recipe follows) 1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over high heat. Add half of okra, cut side down, and cook for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until browned on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn okra over, and reduce heat to low; cook until tender, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with ⅛ teaspoon salt, and drizzle with 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, remaining okra, remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt, and remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Serve warm with Spicy Miso Sauce. ¼ 2 2 2 2 1 1 cup mayonnaise tablespoons ﬁnely chopped green onion tops tablespoons ﬁnely chopped fresh cilantro leaves tablespoons white miso paste tablespoons sambal oelek tablespoon fresh lemon juice to 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream 1. In a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, green onion, cilantro, white miso paste, sambal oelek, and lemon juice. Stir in enough cream until desired ﬂavor and consistency is reached. Cover and refrigerate up to 7 days. NeW BoOk! SoUtHeRn This 164 page, hard-cover book has everything you need for the ultimate Southern barbecue. From low-and-slow smoked meats to quickgrilled favorites like pork chops and okra, this is the ultimate guide to Southernstyle barbecue and grilling. OrDeR YoUr CoPy ToDaY! FREE SHIPPING* ON 2 OR MORE BOOKS OrDeR ToDaY! 3 ■ YES! Send me Southern Barbecue & Grilling for only $24.95, plus $4 S&H. ■ BEST DEAL! Send me two books for only $49.90 and I’ll get FREE shipping!* LUCBBQ17D LUCBBQ17E EASY WAYS TO ORDER _______________________________________________________________ Name Enter or mention discount code LUCBBQ17D _______________________________________________________________ Address Hoffman Media Store P.O. Box 6302 • Harlan, IA 51593 _______________________________________________________________ City/State/Zip _______________________________ _______________________________ E-mail Phone 800-361-8059 Total Amt. Due HOFFMANMEDIASTORE.COM/SOUTHERN-BARBECUE-GRILLING Allow 2–4 weeks for delivery. *U.S. only. Free shipping applies to orders from the 48 contiguous states. Alaska, Hawaii, and orders in Canada add $10 shipping and handling. All others add $20. $ Payment Method Check (make payable to Hoffman Media) Visa ■ MasterCard ■ Discover ■ AmEx _______________________________________________ _______________ Card # Exp. Date _______________________________________________________________ Signature BY T H E BO O K SMOKE & SIZZLE recipe and photos reprinted, with permission, from southern barbecue & grilling: the ultimate guide to perfect barbecue and southern essentials by daniel schumacher (83 press, 2017) FROM TEXAS BRISKET and dry-rubbed Memphis ribs to IN RELENTLESS PURSUIT OF THE TENDEREST PORK, CHICKEN, AND BEEF, GENERATIONS OF HARDWORKING SOUTHERNERS HAVE STEWARDED MEAT TO ITS PERFECT STATE. —DANIEL SCHUMACHER ROSEMARY-LEMON SHRIMP SKEWERS 79 louisianacookin.com Alabama chicken with white sauce, tender pork butt and everything in-between, Southern Barbecue & Grilling (83 Press, 2017) by Louisiana Cookin’ editor and barbecue enthusiast Daniel Schumacher has a little something for everyone. Barbecue pros will appreciate new takes on classic preparations, and newcomers will benefit from stepby-step guidance on each of the South’s major barbecue styles. “Open-fire wood grilling has been around for centuries, and it has been an alive and evolving art in the South as long as people have been here,” says Daniel. “There is such a breadth and depth to Southern barbecue and grilling. It’s a cultural phenomenon.” More than just barbecue, Southern Barbecue & Grilling boasts a selection of fixings, sauces, side dishes, cocktails, and desserts to make unforgettable summer gatherings. Dishes like the BeerMarinated Chicken Drumsticks illustrate how just a few everyday ingredients, plus a nice char, can elevate a simple protein to a masterpiece. By starting the meal with Spicy Corn Dip with Bacon and Smoked Cheddar or Rosemary-Lemon Shrimp Skewers, and then serving those tender chicken legs with Grilled Cabbage Wedges (a brilliant take on a classic wedge salad) or Midsummer Succotash, you’ll have outdone yourself with minimal effort. Classic Southern Pound Cake or an Easy Lemon Icebox Pie will round out the meal and have people talking. In addition to more than 125 recipes, Southern Barbecue & Grilling is peppered with useful tips and tricks, including a variety of spice mixes and sauces, wood combinations for smoking, and an easy guide to convert your charcoal grill into a smoker. “There are so many regional barbecue and grilling traditions throughout the South, and I wanted to be able to honor them,” says Daniel. “I hope readers will get inspired by these recipes and work them into their tried-and-true family favorites.” BEER-MARINATED CHICKEN DRUMSTICKS MAKES ABOUT 5 SERVINGS 2 2 2 1 1 2 3 1 tablespoons kosher salt tablespoons ﬁrmly packed light brown sugar tablespoons paprika tablespoon ground black pepper teaspoon ground red pepper tablespoons olive oil pounds chicken drumsticks (12-ounce) can beer 1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine salt, brown sugar, paprika, black pepper, and red pepper. Add oil and chicken. Seal bag, and shake until chicken is well coated. Pour beer into bag. Seal bag; refrigerate for at least 8 hours. 2. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade. Let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. 3. Spray grill rack with nonﬂammable cooking spray. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). 4. Grill, covered, turning occasionally, until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 165°, about 30 minutes. CO O K I N G W I T H C H E FS TO WATC H LOVE ME TENDER BRISKET SECRETS FROM CHEF JUSTIN FERGUSON photography by jim bathie THROUGHOUT HIS CAREER, 2011 Chef to Watch Justin Ferguson has had a diverse experience: Stroube’s Chophouse in Baton Rouge, the upscale-casual Superior Seafood and Oyster Bar in Uptown New Orleans, and revamping the menu at The Roosevelt Hotel’s classy Fountain Lounge. From there, he moved to Chicago to run the restaurant concepts for a Chicago entertainment group. Now back in his home state with a myriad of experiences under his belt, Justin is opening BRQ Seafood & Barbecue in Baton Rouge. The menu will touch on all of the expected barbecue styles and house-made, locally sourced fixin’s—baby back ribs, brisket, pulled pork—and branch out in a number of other directions. “You’ll see rabbit, Louisiana frog legs, and fried chicken,” says Justin, “but we also have smoked barbecue octopus, gourmet salads, and crazy sandwiches.” With barbecue season in full swing, we got Justin to share his thoughts on smoking a perfectly tender brisket. While it’s a signature Texas style, he expects that it will be a hit at BRQ when it opens this summer. 81 louisianacookin.com Q What do you like about brisket? It’s the hardest thing about barbecue to get right. That’s why I like it. The brisket is the pectoral muscle of the steer, so it’s got the most sinew and it’s tougher. Q What should you be looking for in a great piece of brisket? First, you should always buy the best quality you can afford. I only buy prime. At BRQ, we even do wagyu brisket as a special. And that’s the cream of the crop. There’s so much fat in it; it’s wonderful. Q How much does the size of a brisket matter? If you’re going smaller, it will cook faster. And too big, it will take too long. For me, my window is 15 to 17 pounds. I’ve found that I can cook a 10- to 12-pound brisket in 10 to 12 hours. I like the briskets that take between 12 and 14 hours because I can get more smoke and better flavor into it. If you can stay between 14 and 16 pounds, you’ll be really happy with the result. Q What is the key to great brisket? Slow and low. And some people will tell you they do their brisket at 250 degrees or 225. I do mine at close to 200 degrees and try to cook it longer. You don’t get too much of a char, and it goes for 14 hours with the fat cap up. Some people trim it off, but don’t do it. The fat is what’s keeping your brisket from drying out. Q Let’s talk about the fat cap. You want an even covering of fat across the top. That fat renders down into the meat. If you see a brisket where the meat is mostly showing through the top, that’s not a good sign because it will probably dry out. The fat is a protector, especially from the point down to the flat of the brisket. The other thing is that you want a nice white fat. If you’re seeing yellow fat, that’s probably from a grassfed animal, which will be a little leaner. I’m all about grass-fed beef, but when it comes to brisket, the flavor won’t match up with what you’re expecting. Go for a grain-fed brisket. It makes a big difference. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 82 you have to keep your fire going and keep the smoke up. If you just initially have your smoke in the beginning, after a while you won’t have such a nice smoke ring. What I like to do is get my smoker just rolling with good clean smoke, get the firebox going, and when everything is rolling, then you go in with your brisket. The key is consistently keeping the smoke as it cooks, all day or all night. You really want to be able to see that ring when you cut into your brisket and you have that bright pink around the outside. That’s the sign of a good smoked brisket. Q What about smoking on a gas grill? Don’t do it. Ever. You’re better off cooking it in your oven. All you’ll be doing is grilling the outside of it. It will char and it won’t work. So either go in a smoker, or rub it and put it in the oven. You need good indirect heat for smoking. Q What do you think of the old adage: if you’re looking, you’re not cooking? If I don’t have to open the smoker, I don’t. With the briskets, we put them in there, close the doors, and don’t open them. And that’s it. They just go. We pay attention to the temperature and the smoke box. Q What kind of wood do you like to use for brisket? Q Talk us through your process. I pull out my aged brisket and lay it down on a sheet, take my rub and rub it completely. Then it sits for about 45 minutes before it goes on the smoker. So the big thing is that you want to let it smoke for 12 or 14 hours. When you pull it off, then the brisket rests for 30 minutes. We usually wrap them and keep them warm, then it’s ready to slice. If you take it right off the smoker and cut into it, all the juice is going to run right out of it and ruin your brisket. The longer you can let it rest, the better off you’ll be. Q Two words near and dear to any pitmaster’s heart: smoke ring. How do you get it, and why would you want it? Does it matter? The smoke ring shows the penetration of smoke into the meat, so 83 louisianacookin.com I love hickory. It gives a great smoke. I usually do half-and-half hickory and applewood. Down here in the South, you’ll find a lot of oak and pecan. I tend to get better smoke off of hickory and pecan (which is a little lighter). Everybody has their personal preferences though. It can be hard to find good seasoned wood. Good dry wood gives the smoke a cleaner flavor. Q What do you like to serve with this brisket? A piece of white bread is really classic! The brisket should be so good by itself. And if you reserve the jus, and pour some over [and serve it] with some white bread, that’s about as classic as it gets. At BRQ we have a wonderful red bliss potato salad, big slices of cornbread, or mac and cheese. But when I’m having brisket, I just want brisket. After 14 hours of waiting, I just want to enjoy my brisket. BRQ SMOKED BRISKET MAKES 16 TO 20 SERVINGS Seasoned dry hickory and applewood 1 (14- to 16-pound) prime angus brisket, trimmed of meat and loose fat 1 cup barbecue rub* 1. Soak wood chips in water for at least 30 minutes. Preheat smoker to 200° to 220°. Sprinkle soaked wood chips over coals. 2. Generously rub brisket with barbecue rub. Place brisket on smoker rack. Cover with smoker lid, and cook until tender, 12 to 14 hours. 3. Remove brisket from smoker, wrap in butcher paper, and let rest for 30 minutes. Slice and serve. * 1 cup kosher salt with 2 teaspoons ground black pepper may be substituted. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 84 New! Special Issue ORDER TODAY! hoffmanmediastore.com/southernpies 800-361-8059 SLAP YA MAMA PULLED PORK SANDWICH This is a delicious and easy slow cooker recipe that everyone will enjoy! INGREDIENTS: PORK: 4 lbs. pork shoulder roast, boneless 2 tbsp. Slap Ya Mama Original Blend 1 tbsp. butter 1½ yellow onions, sliced 4 cloves garlic, sliced 2 tbsp. dark brown sugar 12 oz. BBQ Sauce (We used Jay D’s Louisiana Barbecue Sauce) 8 hamburger or brioche buns COLESLAW: 3 cups shredded green cabbage 3 cups shredded red cabbage 1 large jalapeño, sliced ½ small red onion, sliced 1 carrot, peeled and shredded ¾ cup mayonnaise 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar 1 tsp. Slap Ya Mama Hot Blend Seasoning DIRECTIONS FOR PORK Season the roast with 2 tbsp. of Slap Ya Mama Original Blend Seasoning, being sure to cover it evenly. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add butter and the roast. Brown all sides and set aside. In the same skillet, reduce heat to medium; add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are tender. Add water to cover the bottom of the skillet, stir in dark brown sugar, being sure to scrape the bottom of the skillet to help bring up remnants of the browned pork and onion/ garlic mixture. Bring to a light boil then remove from heat. Place roast in the slow cooker and pour contents of the skillet over the roast. Cook on low for 8 hours. Once cooked, remove from the slow cooker and let rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Using 2 forks, pull roast apart into small slices or chunks. Toss with BBQ sauce, serve on buns and top with Coleslaw. DIRECTIONS FOR COLESLAW Combine the cabbage, jalapeño, onion and carrots in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, vinegar and Slap Ya Mama Hot Blend Seasoning. Add dressing to cabbage mixture and toss well. ADDING A LITTLE SPICE TO LIFE SINCE 2001 slapyamama.com | 800.485.5217 #slapyamama EVENT S P OT L I G H T EVENTS Destination Downtown Second & Fourth Saturdays of June–August • Natchitoches NATCHITOCHES, THE OLDEST settlement in the Louisiana Purchase, boasts a historic downtown with charming shops and incredible restaurants. This summer, the city is hosting Destination Downtown, a series of events featuring great music and a variety of fun activities for visitors of all ages. The festivities will take place on the second and fourth Saturdays in June, July, and August. Bring your lawn chairs to Front Street for a day of fun. Kids will love the free inflatables, face painting, caricature drawings, and lawn games. Other activities scheduled include a watermelon eating contest and a margarita tasting event. Music performances from bands like The LaCour Trio, Katalyst, and The Hardrick Rivers Revue will last throughout the afternoon, and on July 8 the event will conclude with a spectacular fireworks show over downtown Natchitoches. For more information about this summer-long happening, view the calendar of events at ddnatty.com. Satchmo Summerfest August 4–6 • New Orleans IN 2001, THE FIRST Satchmo Summerfest was held to commemorate the 100th birthday of one of the most influential jazz musicians of all time, Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong. Now in its 17th year, the annual festival continues to attract crowds with world-famous cuisine and performances from New Orleans’ top musical acts. The free, three-day festival made a move last year from its original location at the Old U.S. Mint to the larger Jackson Square, an ideal backdrop for listening to live music, sampling delicious Creole and Cajun dishes, and cooling off with ice cold beverages. In previous years, the music lineup has included performances from the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Kermit Ruffins, Brass-A-Holics, and many more. Also of note are the fascinating seminars held with internationally respected scholars and musicians. For event information, visit fqfi.org/satchmo. 87 louisianacookin.com FAI RS , F EST I VALS & E V E N TS J U LY June 10 Aug 26 Destination Downtown Natchitoches ddnatty.com June 29 July 2 Essence Festival New Orleans essence.com 1 Lebeau Zydeco Festival Lebeau | 337.381.0592 lebeauzydecofestival.com 1 Slidell Heritage Festival Slidell slidellheritagefest.org 4 Go 4th on the River New Orleans go4thontheriver.com 4 Let Freedom Ring Festival Thibodaux | 985.446.5237 lacajunbayou.com 4 New Iberia Fourth of July Parade New Iberia | 337.344.9397 iberiatravel.com/events 79 San Fermin in Nueva Orleans New Orleans nolabulls.com 14 15 Natchitoches-NSU Folk Festival Natchitoches | 318.357.4332 louisianafolklife.nsula.edu 14 15 Cajun Music and Food Festival Lake Charles | 337.802.4077 cfmalakecharles.com 18 23 Tales of the Cocktail New Orleans | 504.948.0511 talesofthecocktail.com 22 Ponchatoula Christmas in July Ponchatoula | 985.386.2536 tangi-cvb.org 27 28 Louisiana Watermelon Festival Farmerville fjaycees.wix.com/watermelonfestival 28 29 Marshland Festival Lake Charles | 337.540.3182 marshlandfestival.com 89 louisianacookin.com FAI RS , F EST I VALS & E V E N TS AUGUST 1 31 COOLinary New Orleans coolinaryneworleans.com 46 Satchmo Summer Fest New Orleans | 504.522.5730 fqﬁ.org/satchmo 12 New Orleans Red Dress Run New Orleans nolareddress.com 16 20 Delcambre Shrimp Festival Delcambre shrimpfestival.net 17 19 Le Cajun Music Awards and Festival | 713.240.5089 cajunfrenchmusic.org/lecajun.html 19 Arts & Crabs Fest Lake Charles | 337.439.2787 visitlakecharles.org 19 Covington White Linen Evening Covington covla.com 24 25 Fête Rouge Baton Rouge bresbr.org/fete-rouge 24 27 Gueydan Duck Festival Gueydan | 337.536.6456 duckfestival.org Aug. 30 Sept. 4 Louisiana Seafood Festival New Orleans louisianaseafoodfestival.com Aug. 31 Sept. 4 shrimpandpetroleum.org Louisiana Shrimp & Petroleum Festival Morgan City | 985.385.0703 COVINGTON WHITE LINEN EVENING 91 louisianacookin.com Louisiana H EART OF THE C AJUN P RAIRIE JOIE DE VIVRE—A LITTLE JOY OF LIVING ACADIA PARISH TOURIST COMMISSION 877.783.2109 email@example.com www.acadiatourism.org •Tour Rice and Crawfish Farms •Visit Kelly’s Landing Agricultural Museum & Agri-Tour •Tour The Grand Opera House of the South •Visit a Rice Interpretive Center, J.D. Miller Recording Studio Museum and Visit Ford Automotive Museum •Visit a German Heritage Museum 93 louisianacookin.com From a 106-year Old Landmark comes Steen’s 100% Pure Cane Syrup, Cane Vinegar, Cane Molasses and Southern-Made blended syrup. Chefs use our products to create new and exciting glazes, sauces, dips, desserts and toppings that have a unique Ŵavor proƓle from the deep south like Grandma used to make. Begin with the recipes on the bottle or can and then get creative and develop your own signature dishes. Jimmie Steen says, “Try Steen’s syrup with boudin or cracklins for that sweet and salty taste.” C. S. STEEN SYRUP MILL, INC. 119 NORTH MAIN STREET ABBEVILLE, LA 70510 337-893-1654 STEENSYRUP.COM FIND US ON FACEBOOK! Check out our Facebook page to see testimonials. Get creative! The next signature dish in your family to be carried on for generations may just be yours. Louisiana Cookin’ | July/August 2017 94 INDEX & R ESO U RC ES Recipe Index Appetizers Crispy Feta Toasts with Pancetta, 53 Beverages Deadbeat Daiquiri, 34 Georgia O’Keeffe Daiquiri, 38 Henri’s Frozen Negroni, 35 Palace Café’s Hemingway Cocktail, 37 Rubin “The Hurricane” Carter, 37 Willa Jean’s Frosé Y’all, 35 Desserts Fresh Blackberry Granita, 57 Peach Tarte Tatin, 75 Meat, Poultry, and Game Beer-Marinated Chicken Drumsticks, 80 Breast of Duck with Blackberry Demi-Glace, 49 BRQ Smoked Brisket, 84 French Fire-Roasted Chicken, 49 Pork Steaks with Chimichurri and Balsamic Fig Glaze, 56 Sweet and Spicy Habanero Hot Wings, 73 Sauces, Seasonings, and Condiments Balsamic Fig Glaze, 56 Chimichurri Sauce, 56 Corn Maque Choux, 16 Dill-Cucumber Sauce, 20 Firecracker Sauce, 43 Gingery Slaw, 43 Jasmine Earl Grey Sweet Tea Simple Syrup, 37 Quick Pickled Summer Squash, 58 Simple Syrup, 35 Spicy Miso Sauce, 77 95 louisianacookin.com Seafood Crispy Crab Cakes, 19 Firecracker Tuna Tacos, 43 Fish Heads in Curry Broth, 42 L'Auberge Baked Oysters, 66 Pomegranate-Glazed Shrimp with Mango Salsa, 41 The Catﬁsh Are Coming!, 15 Watermelon-Shrimp Salad, 18 Whole Grilled Fish with Pineapple-Basil Glaze, 44 Vegetables and Side Dishes Grilled Eggplant with Herbed Ricotta, 58 Skillet-Roasted Okra with Spicy Miso Sauce, 77 Summer Tomato Salad, 58 Resources Spillin the Beans: Pages 11–13: Photos courtesy of Lula Restaurant Distillery (page 12), Max Cusimano (DTB, page 12), Katie Sikora (Dat Dog, page 12), Darcy Wilkins (Iverstine Farms, 13), Dickie Brennan Restaurant Company (redﬁsh, page 13), and Randy P. Schmidt (portrait, page 13). Culinary Antiques: Pages 21–24: Antiques courtesy of private collections in Dallas and New York City, as well as Lucullus, 610 Chartres Street, New Orleans, Louisiana, 504.528.9620, lucullusantiques.com. Foodways: Pages 25–26: Photo courtesy of LouisianaNorthshore.com (Old Slidell Soda Shop, page 26). Jackpot: Pages 59–66: Photo courtesy of Margaritaville Resort Casino Bossier City (59, 61); and Golden Nugget Lake Charles (page 65). Event Spotlight and Calendar: Pages 87, 89, and 91: Photos courtesy French Quarter Festivals, Inc. (Satchmo Fest); Jennifer Mitchell Photography (Tales of the Cocktail); and Bobby Gilboy Photography (Covington White Linen Evening). Lagniappe: Page 97: Photography by Denny Culbert. BellaCopper Solid Copper Heat Diﬀusers & Defroster Plates ∙ Even heating - no hot spots! ∙ Fantastic as a defroster plate! ∙ They really work—copper conducts heat better! www.BellaCopper.com 805.218.3241 L AG N IAP P E SOUTH LOUISIANA SOFT SHELL CRABS are a culinary delight. As 2014 Chef to Watch Jeremy Connor explored the Lafayette area, he found St. Mary’s Seafood & Marina. For more on this soft shell crab haven and a recipe for Crispy Soft Shell Crab, visit chefstowatch.com/soft-shell-crabs.