5.31.2013

Happy National Macaroon Day!

Funny story: until this was published and a friend called me out, I didn't know that there were different words for "macaroon" and "macaron."  ...as evidenced by the post below.  I have now learned, and today is in fact National Macaroon Day, and should celebrate those coconutty confections.  But I'm leaving it as it is, for funsies.  In case you share my confusion, the cookies featured here are, in fact, French macarons.

Vegan macaroons are a sort of holy grail for veganism.  The confections are so unique and delicious... and so traditionally made from almost nothing but egg whites!  But behold: the internet can be your savior here.  You'll have to ship them down from New York, but from what I hear it will be worth it.


5.30.2013

Happy National Mint Julep Day!

Bourbon, sugar, water, and mint: it's a Southern summer kind of drink if ever there was one.




This is the mint julep I drank at Bridge Lounge during the Arrested Development watching party last Sunday. Deeeeeelicious. (They also specialize in Mojitos!)

5.29.2013

Restaurant Profile: Cafe Granada

On Friday, I heard tell via the internets that my fave bakery, Breads on Oak, was serving vegan French onion soup.  So I rushed over, arriving at 3:30... only to discover that they had closed at 3.  Ah, the heartbreak of lost soup.

Stuffed Mushrooms
Not to be dissuaded, I headed just a few blocks up S. Carrollton to Cafe Granada, which I'd just learned about from WWNO, our local NPR source.  Thanks NPR!

So it was that fate (and hunger) brought me to this little Spanish tapas restaurant.  On top of the charming interior, imagine my surprise when I discovered that they have numerous vegan menu items, many of which I haven't found elsewhere in the city!

Andalusian Gazpacho
Items that are vegan as served include:
  • Aceitunas a la Sevillana: marinated olives, artichokes, and roasted bell peppers
  • Fabada: baby lima beans, artichokes, sundried tomatoes cooked in vegetable broth
  • Stuffed Mushrooms: button mushrooms stuffed with eggplant, sundried tomatoes, and almonds
  • Andalusian Gazpacho
  • Ensalada de Berros: spring mix with heart of palm, avocado, almonds, grapefruit, and citrus vinaigrette
Patatas Bravas
Easily veganized items include:
  • Zucchini Fritters (order without the saffron aioli)
  • Patatas Bravas: potatoes sauteed in spicy tomato sauce (order without the garlic aioli)
  • Eggplant Granada: grilled layers of eggplant stuffed with mushrooms and topped with caramelized onions (order without romesco sauce)





Fabada
I'm so excited to have discovered yet another restaurant with great vegan options in Nola, with reasonable prices and comfortable seating no less.  Stop by, sit a spell, and enjoy!




5.28.2013

Happy National Hamburger Day!

I don't have to tell you that I don't like cows in my burgers, do I?  Nope, didn't think so!

There are lots of things that I *do* like in my burgers - mushrooms, primarily.  And every now and then I like to go for the classic vegetarian "burger": the Portobello mushroom cap.

To make these, I simmered portobello caps in veggie broth, a little balsamic vinegar, and a few dashes of liquid smoke, along with the usual suspect spices (Tony's, onion powder, garlic powder, and such and so forth) until the caps were nice and soft - 10 to 15 minutes.  Served on nice soft buns with Vegenaise and lots of fresh spring greens!  Enjoy.

5.27.2013

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 10: The Food.

Yeah, you knew we'd get around to it right?

I've written about Nola food before.  I used to think it would be impossible to be vegan in New Orleans, but I should have known better.  All foods are possible here.  As I expounded two years ago and still believe:
New Orleans is known for successfully mingling a melange of cooking styles and trends with her own unique flavor.  Vegetarian food has found a place happily within the tapestry, creating delicious new twists in the process.  The options outlined here are only the beginning; there are dozens within the city, and even more in the lands beyond.  Veg in New Orleans?  Easily, and with pleasure.  My question isn’t “where can I eat?” It’s, “which place will I pick?!”  Lucky for me, I won’t be running out of choices any time soon.
There is so much great food here.  Sure there are great Vietnamese and Chinese and Thai and Indian spots with vegan options.  But there are also Spanish, Ethiopian, South and Central American, and Caribbean spots - and more - with plenty for vegans.  And of course there is "New Orleans" cuisine!  I've had vegan po boys, king cakes, gumbos, jambalayas, and red beans and rice - all vegan, all delicious, and all New Orleans.  




Also, here is my official recognition that today is Memorial Day. Regardless of your feelings on war, politics, or our current government figures, it is worthwhile to remember that many have fought and died in the name of the country we live in. Respect to their memory, and to those they left behind.

5.26.2013

Happy Blueberry Cheesecake Day!!

After my adventures in cherry cheesecake last month, I felt well prepared for this day.  And in fact I was.  My brilliant husband gave me the idea to make *mini* cheesecakes, and I did just that!  I used the same cheesecake filling as previously, but this time used my vitamix (rather than my food processor) and came out with a much smoother filling.

Then I subbed frozen blueberries for cherries in a simple fruit sauce recipe.  I also added an extra half tablespoon of corn starch for a slightly thicker sauce.



I made my favorite graham cracker crust, patted it into cupcake papers with a large spoon, and set them for about 10 minutes in a 350-degree preheated oven.

I filled the cups about 2/3 of the way with the filling and baked for 25 mins.  Finally, when they had cooled, I spooned on the blueberry topping.

I gotta tell y'all, this is one of the best things I've ever made!  And look how pretty!  I highly suggest making these for parties or any occasion.





5.25.2013

Happy National Brown-Bag-It Day!

What a great day to celebrate huh?  Brown bagging it!  For those of us who work in offices, this tends to be something we always intend to do... but *actually* do a good bit less often than always.  (And of course, today is Saturday.)

As for me, my typical bring-it-to-work lunch consists of raw veggies (carrots, broccoli, and grape tomatoes are favorites, and sometimes cauliflower), some sort of hummus, and nuts (almonds or cashews generally).  My boss says that I eat the same foods as my rabbits... I don't have the heart to tell her that rabbits can't eat broccoli.  (Or nuts.  Or hummus, for that matter...)

So what's your favorite brown bag lunch?

Brown bags make a boring picture, so you get this instead:

5.24.2013

Happy National Escargot Day!

What did they say when the snail drove by in the race car?

LOOK AT THAT S CAR GO!

(Say it out loud - you'll get it.)

This was one of my sister's favorite jokes throughout childhood.  I am telling it absolutely wrong - there is some portion where the snail paints an S on his car.  But at any rate, this joke is why I've always known that the fancy french dish known as "escargot" is actually cooked snails.

What I didn't know until poking around for this post is that it involves a surprising amount of cruelty to the snails (that is, beyond boiling them alive).  Apparently the process takes weeks.  They're made to fast, and then cleanse - which would be all fine and good if it was just for their personal health... which of course it isn't.

You will be unsurprised to discover that I vote to leave the snails in their shells, alive and happily exploring the world.  And so, Happy Snails are Awesome Day!  Go make yourself a snail friend today.

5.23.2013

Happy National Taffy Day!

Here in New Orleans, we have our own kind of taffy - it's called Roman Candy, and it has been brightening the lives of children throughout the city for over a hundred years.

I believe I've mentioned this before.



Today is also World Turtle Day, which is just cool. :)

5.22.2013

Happy National Vanilla Pudding Day!

Vanilla pudding is a simple, comforting, delicious and creamy treat.  For me personally it brings back fond childhood memories of post-dinner desserts.

There are accidentally and intentionally vegan pudding mixes out there.  But here's the really cool part: you can make your own vegan pudding mix!  You'll have to cook it.

If you are an awesome lazy jerk like me, you might go the Jello pudding mix route.  YES.  Using a combination of coconut milk and almond milk (one cup of each), vanilla Jello pudding mix (one box), and an immersion blender, delicious vanilla pudding can be yours.  You can also of course just use a whisk like a normal person.

(Apparently I am not the first person to think of this.)

And if you've just made a delicious chocolate cake, you can even make a parfait.


Also, Happy International Harvey Milk Day!

5.20.2013

Happy National Quiche Lorraine Day!

 Quiche is one of those foods that seems like it would be impossible to veganize.  And yet, it's actually quite easy to make a vegan quiche.  Likewise, both bacon and cheese seem that they would be restricted to omnivores, and yet really tasty vegan versions of each are now readily available.

Behold!  Vegan Quiche Lorraine is within our grasp!

Quiche Lorraine is considered the "original" or "classic" quiche.  While the vegan version is a pretty far cry from healthy, it can still be considered healthier than the animal-fat and cholesterol filled non-vegan version - being that it's made of eggs, cheese, bacon, and heavy cream.

Ours is made with vegan bacon, vegan cheese, tofu, and vegetable stock.  A bit better right?

I say ours, but I really mean my husband's.  He makes quiche using a pre-made crust from Whole Foods, one block of extra-firm tofu, and about half a cup of stock all blended in the vita-mix and well seasoned with the usual suspects (garlic salt, some pink salt and turmeric for that eggy feel, and so on).  For the Lorraine effect, we mixed in one package of chopped Upton's seitan bacon and one cup of Diaya shreds.

The whole mess is poured in the pie crust and baked for 40 minutes on 350.  Awesome bonus: it makes an awesome breakfast quiche straight from the fridge the next morning!


5.19.2013

Happy National Devil's Food Cake Day!

It's hard for me to name a "favorite" cake.  Cake is just so delicious.  So I suppose you could say that the my favorite cake is the one in front of me, ha ha.  But I will say that when given a choice, I'm often swayed by chocolate.  So what could be better than devil's food?!

I used this recipe, subbing apple sauce for the flax, and the results were delicious.  I mean really, really delicious.  I didn't even put icing on it.  I just ate that freakin delicious cake with nuthin.  I brought it to work, and my whole (non-vegan) office freaking loved it too.  YEAH.  CAKE.

Due to its lack of icing, it wasn't very photographable.  So here's a picture of my kitten.



What's your favorite cake?

5.18.2013

Happy National Cheese Souffle Day!

Happy Cheese Souffle Day!  I must admit, I was initially stumped by this day.  Not only have I never eaten a souffle, much less a vegan cheese souffle - I've certainly never tried to make one!  So I was skeptical.  But then I found this recipe, and then this one, and thought, well maybe.  If they can do it, why can't I?

Well, I have yet to try.  I went to a graduation and then sang karaoke instead.  I'll tell you what - why don't you give it a shot and let me know how it turns out?


5.17.2013

Happy National Cherry Cobbler Day!

So, not that surprisingly, cherry cobbler is very similar to peach cobbler - a sort of bastard pie.  Oddly though, recipes suggest baking the peach cobbler crust down, and cherry cobbler crust up.  Thus is the way of the world, I suppose.

This recipe seems ridiculously easy to veganize, and when cherries come into season this summer I plan to try it out!  (Don't forget to find organic cherries - their high sugar content and thin skin leads to excessive pesticide-ing in conventionally grown crops.)


5.16.2013

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 8: The Music.

You heard it here first: There's great music in New Orleans!!  Just kidding.  You've been hearing it your whole life, and it's been true for a lot longer than that.

I come from a musical family, and have sometimes wondered whether I missed the boat with this here desk job.  My grandfather played Dixieland Jazz and repaired instruments, and used to woo crowds at the Peristyle in City Park back in the days when it was used as a dancing pavilion.  My mom plays and tunes pianos, and my dad plays trumpet.  My sister and I both dabbled when we were young, but that's a story for another day.

There's no question that Nola is saturated with amazing musicians.  Where would the world be without Irma Thomas, the Neville brothers, the Marsallis family, Quintron and Miss Pussycat, the Bingo! Show, and all those fantastic brass bands?  It would be a colder duller place, there is no doubt.

But I must say, my favorite piece of our musical culture is its accessibility.  It is everywhere, permeating our daily lives.  Beyond the numerous festivals that pepper our springs and falls, there are the plethora of musical acts large and small that can be found around town on any given night, many for free.  Wednesdays at the Square brings free performances throughout the spring.  Our music is ubiquitous, and powerful, and available to all who wish to partake.

5.15.2013

It has come to my attention...

...that today is also National Chocolate Chip day.  And with a preliminary note about the importance of buying fair trade chocolate, I offer you the following without further ado:

Melissa Bastian's Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies
4 tsp ground flaxseed
4 Tbsp warm water
2 cups white flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
Optional: 1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/3 cups margarine (yes, almost three sticks... it's a lot of cookies!)
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, loosely packed
4 tsp vanilla extract
8 to 12 ounces {vegan, fair trade} chocolate chips

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Set out your margarine to soften. Line at least two large cookie sheets with parchment paper. (You don't have to use parchment paper for these, but it just makes cleanup so darned easy! If you're not using it, use nonstick sheets or better yet a combo of a nonstick sheet with a very light coating of baking spray or oil. Very light!)

The first thing you're going to do is make your flax "eggs". If you haven't done this before, it's awesome. Apparently you can just mix the ground flaxseed with warm water and let it sit, so if you don't have a vegetable chopper no worries. But if you do have one, well that's my preferred method. Combine the water and ground flaxseed in the chopper, and pulse/blend for a few minutes until the mixture basically reaches the consistency of egg whites. It really will! It's kind of creepy, but very good for your cookies. Set aside.

Combine your dry ingredients minus sugars (flours, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon if you're using it).

In a separate, large bowl (and if you're making the full recipe, I mean LARGE), cream the sugars and softened (not melted!) margarine together until they reach a nice creamy even consistency. I find that sometimes this is a two spatula job - as in hold one spatula (or spoon) in each hand and work the mixture into itself by pushing the implements together. Just do it and you'll see what I mean. Then mix in your flax eggs and vanilla extract. Mix until completely homogeneous.

Now begin adding your drys. Sift some and mix, sift some and mix. The more you add the more difficult it will become to stir (duh), so I hope you have a strong shoulder. Mix until consistent - if you find any brown sugar lumps crumble them with your fingers. If they're too hard for that, probably better to just toss them out. (And if there are many that are too hard, you probably need new brown sugar!)

Now for your favorite part - chocolate chips! Fold those suckers in. Remember that if you OD on chips, your cookies may not hold together - you want to have a good cookie-to-chip ratio. This looks like a crazy amount of chips, but considering how much dough is under there it's just about right. Don't cheap out on your chips. Good chocolate chips is one of the secrets to good chocolate chip cookies. Like, duh. And when buying chocolate, consider your sources - there's some wicked stuff going on in the chocolate market (and I mean that literally).

This dough refrigerates well. So if you're like me, and you do something silly and short-sighted like start making cookie dough at eleven o'clock at night, and then need to go to bed, s'ok. Just cover it up, stick it in the fridge, and put off the fun part until tomorrow. If you pre-heated your oven thinking you were gonna power through, you probably wanna turn that off. It's a little pricey and not terribly safe as a heater.

Moon... stars... sunrise... TIME TO BAKE!

I have to say, baking cookies is an awesome way to start the day. Don't know if I could do it every day, but it sure put a smile on my face this weekend.

Alright. So what you want to do here is roll your dough into (to steal a PPK-ism) "walnut" sized balls and place them at least two inches apart on your baking sheets. These suckers spread like whoa. When placing them on the sheet, I also squish them down just a little bit with my palm. You can spoon them out instead of rolling, but they come out in nicer rounder shapes if you roll. Rolling, of course, is far easier if the dough has gone into the fridge for a while.  And I do use a spoon to help me get the right amount of dough for the balls.

Bake for 12 minutes in your pre-heated oven. Let them cool for at least five minutes before you eat them - they come out VERY soft. Actually, they come out downright puffy, and you'll think something has gone terribly wrong. But within a couple of minutes they sort of collapse, which unlike when your souffle does it is a good thing, and become just like you want them to be. DELICIOUS.

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 7: Mardi Gras.

Mardi Gras.  You've probably heard of it?  So here's my dirty confession: for the first nine years that I lived in New Orleans, I HATED it.  Like, with a passion.  Left town a few times just to get away from it.

What, are you crazy?! you may say.  Everyone loves Mardi Gras!  We spend tons of money to get there, and you're there and you LEAVE??  What gives?

What gives is that until my Katrina-induced forced sabbatical from Nola, I really hadn't figured out how to live here.  I think my lil brain really believed that if I was angry or indignant enough, the world would bend to my will.  (This is a condition that I do not think is uncommon to twenty-somethings.)  These stupid parades are in my way!, I'd think.  Why would anyone arrange something so obstructive?!  And loud and crowded and obnoxious?!?!  I would fling myself into the worst of the traffic and blockages trying to get home from work, cursing all the way and shaking my fists.  Nevermind that I didn't actually need to get home for anything, and if I'd just passed a few hours at the coffee shop across the street (as I did on most nights), everything would have cleared out without my tantrums.

Long story short, I was incapable of going with the flow.

In this department, my thirties are working out a good bit better than my twenties did.  I have learned that if you just accept situations for what they are, rather than fuming about what you think they should be, things get a lot easier.  You might even enjoy the things that you initially found so infuriating.  Lo and behold, during my NYC tenure, I actually began to miss Mardi Gras.

Last year, living uptown, I rode my bike up to Central City to watch the Zulu parade.  I got not one, but TWO coconuts.  I biked back and couldn't get across St. Charles, so I locked my bike up and walked.  I couldn't find my friends, so I watched Rex with the other people who had chosen to camp on the corner in front of Superior Seafood.  Not only was it fine, it was FUN.  It was in fact an amazing, unique kind of fun that really only happens in New Orleans.

5.14.2013

Happy National Buttermilk Biscuit Day!

Oooh, how I do love biscuits.  I had yet to crack the code of vegan biscuits, until I decided to veganize this "buttermilk" biscuit recipe.  I subbed earth balance buttery sticks for the butter.  Then using the trick I learned from the unparalleled Isa and Terry duo of souring my (unflavored unsweetened almond) milk with apple cider vinegar, I got to work.

Sadly, I apparently have NO idea how to deal with this kind of sticky dough.  After a few tries, I gave up and just threw blobs onto my cookie sheet.  The resulting objects were pretty decent in taste and texture, indicating that the recipe itself is good. Definitely worth trying again... with a lot more flour on my surface next time!


ALSO: I am 100% in support of National Dance like a Chicken Day!!!

5.13.2013

Happy National Apple Pie Day!

In case you didn't know, I have a husband who is pretty much made of magic.  When I mentioned National Apple Pie Day to him, he immediately began to reminisce about his days as a cook.  As he tells it, he used to come home from his shift and whip up a pie on a pretty regular basis.  And so I said - and what else could I say? - wanna make me an apple pie?

Lo and behold, he did.  Now, I wasn't present for the pie making, but he tells me that he used this recipe for the pie filling, and this one for the crust - subbing butter in each with earth balance.  I came home to the lovely pie pictured here.  Yes, it tastes at least as good as it looks!

(He is mad at me because he only got one piece of his own pie.  Can I help it if what he makes is SO delicious that I can't resist it?)




5.12.2013

Happy National Nutty Fudge Day!!

Have we already talked about my favorite fudge?  All of my fudges are variations on Have Cake, Will Travel's Whiskey Peanut Fudge.  (It doesn't seem to be posted any more.)  I have, in truth, never made the original recipe!  I have made many variations of it with different nuts and liquors - and each time, it is amazing.  But I must say that my rocky road version is my favorite.
Rocky Road Fudge

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups of chocolate, coarsely chopped then measured
  • 2 cups (yes really, two cups) of powdered sugar (confectioners sugar)
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/8 cup "milk" (I use Almond Breeze, but use whatever floats your boat - soy, rice, hemp, whatev)
  • 1/8 cup rum
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup marshmallows, quartered then measured
  • 1 and 1/2 cups walnuts, measured then roughly chopped
Steps:
  • Melt your chocolate. You can use a double boiler for this, but I've actually found that it isn't necessary. It's much more helpful to have a nonstick pot! Stir constantly, and remove from heat as soon as you only have a few little lumps yet. You want to heat your chocolate as little as possible, because you have to let it return to room temperature before using it. How does it stay liquid when it started out solid? Magic.
  • Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper. I swear, this is why parchment exists, and I love it.
  • Chop your walnuts - how big or small depends on how you like it.
  • Quarter your marshmallows. I've used Dandies for this, but I feel that Sweet and Sara's would be wonderful as well - just a little pricey maybe. Marshmallows are very sticky when you cut them open! I find it helpful to use some powdered sugar on the chopping board and on my hands to coat the newly exposed sides, so that the marshmallows don't stick to the board, each other, me... (Of course, if you can get ahold of the mini Dandies, no chopping is necessary!)
  • In a large bowl, whisk together coconut milk, other milk, rum, extract, and powdered sugar. (If your powdered sugar has little sugar rocks in it, run it through a sieve or sifter first.) Mix in your marshmallows and walnuts. (This is about when I switch from a whisk to a spatula. Walnuts + whisk = baagghhh.)
  • Stir in your ROOM TEMPERATURE chocolate. Seriously people. It cannot be hot... unless of course you want to make fudge soup.
  • Pour/scoop the mixture into your prepared pan, and use a spatula to spread it not quite to the edges.
  • Refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours, until completely firm. Then break into chunks or cut up, display nicely on a plate, and watch your loved ones go wild.
Fudgy.

Some additional notes...

*I like to use three 1 oz. squares of semi-sweet and six of unsweetened - plenty of sugar is added later!
*If you have bought a normal size can of coconut milk, this recipe is only going to use about a third of it. You may want to think about creative ways to use the rest - coconut milk goes bad quickly once opened! Of course, you *could* always make a triple batch...
*The rum here is optional - you can up the milk to 1/4 cup and leave it out. But I like the tiny punch it gives, and I swear it doesn't leave the fudge tasting very rummy. Conversely, you can do a full quarter cup and leave the milk out entirely!

Given that today is also Mother's Day, you could make some fudge for the mamas in your life!

5.11.2013

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 6: The Houses.

Much ado is made over New Orleans' wrought iron balconies and other architectural features.  But to me, what really shines is our houses.

I'll never forget a time back when I was 19, chauffering around my then-boyfriend's mother.  She, having grown up in New England, could not believe what she was seeing.  THE COLORS!  Purple houses, and orange and pink and blue!  She was positively stunned by the rainbow.

Living here, it's easy to take for granted.  We see the colors every day, and forget that in other places houses are painted colors like "beige" and "puce."  And we forget that in most other places, you don't see intricately painted corbels holding up porch ceilings.  We forget that floor-to-ceiling windows that can be used as doors aren't generally standard issue.  And other towns have shotguns, but they're more likely to be called "railroads."  Curious: do other places have camelbacks?

We are spoiled, but that's not to say we don't appreciate the beauty.  I know I do, every single day.

5.10.2013

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 5: The Water.

Maybe it's a product of being raised on the Gulf coast, but I've never felt quite right if I'm too far away from water.  That is of course not an issue here in Nola - for better or worse we're surrounded on three sides. I've spent summers in the salt marshes of the coast, and countless hours staring at the lake. (New Orleans has a lake, you say?  Yes!  And it's enormous!)  The power of water is to be respected, as so many of us know all too well.  But this does not stop me from marveling at it.

Plus there's the watermeters.


5.08.2013

Happy National Coconut Cream Pie Day!!

Oooh, coconut cream, one of my favorites.  And so easy to make vegan!  My plan for this day was to get some instant vanilla pudding, use coconut milk for the "milk" part, add a smidge of coconut extract for an extra coconutty punch, pour it over my fave graham cracker crust, and let it firm up nice in the refrigerator - ice box pie style.  ...but it didn't happen.  What between crepes and making another pineapple upside-down cake for my ma's birthday, I am all sweeted out.

So I have to turn to the pros.  Check out this beauty from Bite Me (I'm Vegan)!


5.07.2013

Happy National Roast {anything but} Leg of Lamb Day!

There are so, so many good things to roast in this world.  Why anyone would choose to roast the leg of a Lamb I will never know.  What will you roast today?  How about some nice potatoes?


5.06.2013

Happy National Crepes Suzette Day!

In French class in the 7th grade, we made crepes with a special crepe pan.  It was all very, very sophisticated, and I was the best crepe maker in the class.

...and I haven't eaten them since.  So I thought, why not try it again?  I easily found this recipe for vegan crepes.  (I'm not sure if it's not a great recipe or if I'm just not great at cooking them - they were a bit more chewy than I remember.  But they tasted alright.)

Then, to properly celebrate this national day, it was just a matter of whipping up some Suzette sauce.  It's a pretty simple reduction of butter, orange juice, and sugar, with a topping of Grand Marnier or other orange liquor.  Luckily Grand Marnier is already vegan, so it was just a matter of using vegan "butter" and sugar.  (And, of course, using actually vegan orange juice.)  I followed this recipe (sort of) for the sauce and presentation.

And here's what I came up with!  I don't think I'll be making these all the time, as it took a while and they are pretty sweet and greasy! But it was fun and they were tasty.  Happy crepe-ing y'all.

5.05.2013

Ten reasons that I freaking love New Orleans, Part 3: Fake French.

It's not so strange for a city's cultural heritage to leak through in its everyday life.  Here in New Orleans, despite the tug-of-war between Spanish and French control, it is the French that perseveres most visibly.

What does that even mean, you say?  Well, we celebrate Mardi Gras (and Lundi Gras... and occasionally Lombardigras), we eat beignets with cafe au lait at the Cafe du Monde after eating etouffee at the Bon Ton, put fleurs de lis on everything, and talk about how the Saints ain't the aint's neaux meaux.  College kids drink beaucoup beer at their parties, and the bakery might just give you a lil lagniappe when you pick up your gateau du roi.

But the incarnation that is most visible and pervasive is, by far... geaux.









Geaux Nola.