No surprise, food quickly became a centerpiece of our collective response to the epic flooding that began here in the greater Baton Rouge area on August 12. Chefs and home cooks in a position to help sprang into action, furiously preparing meals for family, friends and strangers who were leveled by a weather event that seemed to have come out of nowhere. In those first few days of the catastrophe, with many roads closed, businesses shuttered, and homes swallowed up by water, restaurateurs who didn’t flood cooked thousands of meals they brought to shelters and to affected neighborhoods. There was no great plan — just urgent, heartfelt action. Continue Reading…
We’re rooting hard in Baton Rouge for our own Jay Ducote to take top honors on The Next Food Network Star, and one of his recipes on the show inspired dinner at my house this week. Jay is a friend and fellow blogger/food writer (among other talents), and it’s been fun to watch him soar on a national level on both Cutthroat Kitchen and now possibly as Food Network’s next big thing. A few episodes into the annual series, he’s showing his natural ability to gab and connect, and he’s playing to his strengths as a chef who favors big Southern flavors. The Cajun tasso macque choux he prepared for a large crowd during the first episode earned kudos – and it prompted me to make my own version.
Oysters are the perfect addition to the 2015 Super Bowl party menu, both as a nod to two seafood-centric coastal locales, New England and Seattle, and to our own Gulf oyster season still underway here in South Louisiana. For parties, I like to serve them baked or grilled on the half-shell, and for the Super Bowl in particular, adding bacon and barbecue sauce makes them festive and football-y. Pretty sure that’s a word this week.
One of my all-time favorite oyster recipes is Oysters Fitzpatrick from the Junior League of Baton Rouge’s 1959 food bible, River Road Recipes, but here I’ve reworked it with a locally made barbecue sauce, Jay D’s, made by my friend and fellow food writer/blogger Jay Ducote (BiteandBooze.com).