Jul 23, 2014

What's the Haps Wednesday {Early Mardi Gras and Louisiana Eats}

It's not often I try out something new.  Example: I've had basically the same blog layout for almost 6 years.  The idea of changing makes my chest hurt.  I like routine.  Sameness.  Same-ole-same-ole.  Safe.

But I thought it might be fun (ya know, in an anxiety attack kinda way) to put some non-food stuff out there now and then.  Things I can't find a way to work into food posts.  Or at least not in a logical way.

So here goes with the first What's the Haps Wednesday...

Have you seen this "Ready When He Is" Subaru commercial?
"Go to the Mardi Gras" by Professor Longhair was chosen as the background music.

At first I thought it was unusual to hear Mardi Gras music coming from my TV so out of season.  Living with a budding musician, Mardi Gras music often starts up in December in my house (practice makes perfect), so really this shouldn't be too unusual for me.

The song is also an odd choice considering all this kid's going through...but that's why I like it.
And I think we can all identify with those little everyday annoyances...


Whether you're visiting Louisiana to "Go to the Mardi Gras" or for some other reason, you'll want to eat...and eat you will.  Meals are often what we plan our days around.

Thrillist recently listed "The Best Louisiana Restaurants NOT in New Orleans."  Most of the 11 restaurants chosen are heavily clustered in the Southeastern portion of the state (near NOLA), leaving out much of Cajun country and our Northern residents.

However I have eaten at a handful of the 11 and don't disagree too much with the choices.  (Visit the link for the full 11.)

Cafe Des Amis in Breaux Bridge: love the Zydeco breakfast on Saturday mornings...actually it's the only time I've ever been here.  Eggs Begnaud topped with Crawfish Gratin, served with Andouille Grits is my favorite...just sayin'.

Middendorf's in Manchac: I don't know how many times this place has been destroyed by flooding and/or hurricanes, but it always comes back.  I haven't eaten here in many, many, many years, but I still remember the catfish.

Mosca's in Avondale: Thrillist mentions the Oysters Mosca.  As an oyster hater, I can tell you that I would eat platters upon platters of Oysters Mosca without thinking twice.  Prices are kind of high, but portions are huge--large enough to share.  Cash only.  I've thought about trying to recreate Oysters Mosca at home...but why?

Prejean's in Lafayette: This may be the one I take exception with.  At one time, Prejeans was great and I loved going there.  Now I find it to be way too touristy and the food only so-so.  I do admit to having a soft spot for this place though.   On one of our trips "back home," we drove from Missouri to LA and stopped at Prejean's for supper.  As we waited outside for a table, the Boy (maybe 6 at the time), piped up, "It smells like Louisiana."  A mixture of humidity, decaying vegetation, and Cajun cooking.

Jul 21, 2014

Louisiana Lingo {Canialle Bleu Cocktail}

It's been a while--and by "a while" I mean 6 years--since I've done a Louisiana Lingo post.
And I guess that's because when I first moved back to LA in 2008, I was really tuned in to the odd things we say and the way we say them.

Canialle Bleu Cocktail | Ms. enPlace

After living in Texas and Missouri for a combined dozen years, it was fresh to my ears.  Now, it's comme ci comme ça.  Not something I think twice about.

Except recently when a co-worker asked me if I had my ass on my shoulders like so-and-so did and I was absolutely, totally confused.

I replied that my ass was firmly (or not so much) where it should be, but thanks for the concern about my anatomy.

She had to explain to me that this phrase was similar to "boude," which in Cajun French means pouting.

Canialle Bleu Cocktail | Ms. enPlace

Then I started noticing the "funny" things my Cajun co-workers say.  The things I was taking for granted.

Envie -- (awn vee) a craving.
Mais las!  I got an envie for some rice and gravy, yeah!

Mais las -- (may lah) literally means "but there," what we mean: look at that, I can't believe, my goodness
Oh, mais las! Pauvre bête!

Pauvre bête -- (pawv bet) poor thing
Pauvre bête.  She was sick as a dog last night over all that tracas.

Tracas -- (tra cah) trouble, a mess
Pooyie!  I don't need no more tracas.  I'm goin' to da house.

Have you noticed that we mix French and English?  
We think nothing of it, cher.
Use double negatives?
We don't think nothing of it, no.
(Yes, that's a triple...lagniappe!)

My all-time favorite Cajun word...
Canialle -- (Ka-nye) sneaky, sly

Like me.  Or I'm told.

And like this drink.
Canialle Bleu Cocktail | Ms. enPlace

Because it tastes all blueberry and sweet and jammy.
But, mais las!  It'll knock you down and give you some tracas.

Canialle Bleu Cocktail | Ms. enPlace

The Husband put it together.  We debated what to call it.  It was a heated debate that left some boude, and some with the red ass (on her shoulders).

Print It!

Canialle Bleu Cocktail
(Sneaky Blue Cocktail)

8 oz vodka
8 oz blueberry puree, strained to remove skins if desired
3 oz lemon juice
2 oz simple syrup

Add all ingredients to a pitcher and stir or whisk to combine.  Pour into glasses and add ice.
Makes 21 oz.

* for blueberry puree: Add about 1 1/4 cups blueberries to a blender and puree.  Pass through a sieve to remove blueberry skins, if desired.

* for simple syrup: Combine 2 parts sugar to 1 part water in a saucepan and stir.  Bring to a boil.  Store sealed in the refrigerator--keeps for several weeks.

More Cajun talk...
Popcorn Balls | Ms. enPlace
Trout Amandine | Ms. enPlace
Pain Perdu | Ms. enPlace

In the past...
Bananas Foster | Ms. enPlace
Figs Royale | Ms. enPlace
Grilled Vegetable Quesadillas | Ms. enPlace

Linking with:

Inspiration Monday My Pinterventures The YUCK Stops Here
Feeding Big The 21st Century Housewife Hearth and Soul Blog Hop
Full Time Mama Lou Lou Girls Tasty Tuesdays
Wednesday Whatsits Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
My Turn for us
Say G'Day Saturday

Jul 20, 2014

See Ya in the Gumbo # 143 {potluck}

It's Gumbo time!
My great grandpa said See ya in the gumbo! 
instead of "good-bye."
It means see ya out there in the mix.

Gumbo is a mix of various ingredients.  
And no two people make it the same way.
To "make a gumbo" means much more than cooking.  When someone says "I'm making a gumbo," it means family and friends are invited.

I invite you to join this POTLUCK PARTY every Sunday night.
Bring whatever mix of ingredients you'd like.

Ms. enPlace

Top Five Features
(based on your clicks)

   Vegetable Casserole: Briam  
from Simple Living and Eating
Vegetable Casserole- Briam- simplelivingeating.com

Light Spinach Dip
from Soup Spice Everything Nice  
Light Spinach Dip from Soup Spice Everything Nice

Spicy Poke Salad
from Joybee, What's For Dinner?
    Spicy Poke Salad:  Spicy poke (pronounced poke-eh) topping a mixed green salad.

Chocolate Chip Oat Banana Cookies
from Something Sweet: Winnie's Blog 
Chocolate-Chip Cookies Banana Oats

Greek Chicken Salad
from Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Greek Chicken Salad from Miz Helen's Country Cottage

I liked...
Utica Greens 
from Upstate Ramblings
Utica Greens - Italian-American dish featuring escarole, hot peppers and garlic

Simple Grilled Onions Side Dish
from Earning & Saving with Sarah Fuller 
Simple Grilled Onion Side Dish Plate

Almond Flour Chocolate Chip and Pecan Cookies --GF
from This West Coast Mommy
almond flour chocolate chip and pecan cookies

The Boy liked...
Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream 
from Living the Gourmet

No-Bake Peanut Butter Caramel Cheesecake
from The Jewish Lady 
No-Bake Peanut Butter Caramel Cheesecake from The Jewish Lady

Ice Cream Birthday Cake – GF,CF,DF,RSF
from Creating Silver Linings
Ice Cream Birthday Cake – GF,CF,DF,RSF from Creating Silver Linings

The Husband liked...
Asian Noodles with Peanut Dressing 
from A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures 
A Kitchen Hoors Adventures | Asian Noodles with Peanut Dressing a #WeeknightSupper

Mini Mocha Cheesecakes 
from Shari Blogs
Mini Mocha Cheesecakes  from Shari Blogs

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1. Your post will be linked along with a picture on this site 
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