Easy Jambalaya

58

You will never guess what I did today…

I arrive at work, head down to my desk and notice that there’s something a little “off” about my walk. After each step, my right foot is hitting the ground sooner than the left one… Omg, did one of my legs suddenly get shorter? Is the right side of my body shrinking?? What’s happening?!

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EPIC SHOE FAIL! I have two pairs of black loafers (yep I wear loafers, they’re super comf) and this morning I accidently put on one shoe from each pair! D’OH! One of the pairs has a higher heel than the other, hence the reason why my walk was so lopsided. Thankfully, (hopefully?) I don’t think anyone noticed since the shoes look pretty similar at a quick glance. I blame the dimly lit hallway closet that I have to fish my shoes out from every morning…

My goodness!

Shoe disasters aside, I had a great day. :)  The sun was shining and Ben came down to have lunch with me. Plus, it’s Fat Tuesday!

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Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras, is the day before the beginning of Lent. Traditionally, it’s a day to eat rich and sinfully delectable foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season. It can also mean drinking copious amounts of Hurricanes and flinging beads every which way. You know, normal, everyday stuff. ;)

In the IGE household, Fat Tuesday means Jambalaya for dinner!

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Jambalaya is a very popular Cajun/Creole dish that usually combines the southern holy trinity of green peppers, onions & celery, with chicken, sausage, seafood, spices and rice, to create a big bubbling pot of ultimate yumminess.

I used Martha Stewart’s recipe as a guide to make my own Mardi Gras staple!

Easy Jambalaya

Print this recipe!

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:
2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 Chicken breasts, cut into chunks
Salt & pepper
2 celery sticks, chopped fine
1/2 medium onion, minced
1/2 medium bell pepper, minced
1 lb turkey kielbasa, chopped into half moons
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons old bay seasoning
Hot sauce, to taste
Red pepper flakes, to taste
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup water
1-14oz can crushed tomatoes
1 cup long grain rice
2 dried bay leaves

Directions:

  1. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and sear chicken pieces, seasoning with salt & pepper, until barely cooked through, ~5 minutes. Remove chicken to a bowl and set aside.
  2. Turn the heat down to medium-low, heat remaining olive oil and cook vegetables until tender, ~8-10 minutes. Add kielbasa and cook for 3 more minutes. Add garlic and stir constantly for 30 seconds.
  3. Add in seasoning, hot sauce & peppers, chicken broth, water and crushed tomatoes. Bring the whole mixture to a boil and add in the chicken, rice and bay leaves. Let the mixture simmer for 10 minutes then put the cover on the Dutch oven and remove it from the heat. Let stand until the rice is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed, ~35 minutes. Enjoy!

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Cracking open the heavy lid of the Dutch oven, after anxiously waiting for everything to cook, was like opening a present on Christmas Day!

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The rice soaks up all the delicious flavors and wraps everything up into one delectable dish. Comfort food at its finest.

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I used this long grain Basmati rice. It was really easy to work with.

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Oh and to make it a little healthier, I used turkey kielbasa instead of the traditional andouille sausage. It was just perfect!

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To go with, I made some Grandma’s Buttermilk Cornbread. This meal was all Southern, baby. :)

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I could eat this cornbread for every single meal – it’s THAT good. Massive kudos go out to the Grandma that made up this recipe!

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Whew – we are so full! This was an unforgettable meal, and I’m so happy we could channel a little bit of the South right here in the Midwest. :)

I suppose this would be a good segue into telling you where Ben and I are going for Spring Break… We’re heading to The Big Easy – aka New Orleans!

We (well, mostly me) like our relaxing beach vacations, but we most definitely love our getting out and exploring vacations! Oh, and you will never believe what’s taking place during our stay – the New Orleans Roadfood Festival!!

Can you say good timing?! Check out these highlights:

  • Unique dishes from New Orleans, from around Louisiana, and from the top-ranking Roadfood restaurants all across America will be served in affordable, sample-size portions.
  • 5 blocks of Royal Street in the heart of The French Quarter will be the home of 20 vendors serving regional specialties unavailable elsewhere.
  • The world’s longest oyster po’boy, and beignet-eating contest.

We had no idea this was going to be going on when we booked our trip and are seriously giddy with anticipation. FYI – I plan on entering, and winning, the beignet-eating contest. ;)

Needless to say, we are beyond excited to see the sights and taste the food of New Orleans. Neither Ben nor I have ever been, so if you have any suggestions as to must see/must do/must eat items – we are all ears (and mouths)! :D

In the meantime, I’m going to go digest and get ready to watch Lost. Stay tuned tomorrow for my 40 day Lenten challenge. Goodnight! :D

~~~~~

Do you like Southern Food?

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Comments

  1. Sandy 02.16.2010

    hahaha your shoe story cracked me up, so silly! mmm the jambalaya looks delish!

  2. Lauren 02.16.2010

    That is the most exciting news!!!! I bet you guys are so thrilled. I have always wanted to go N’aw-leans. Can’t wait to hear more about your trip!! :)

    Have a good night hun.

  3. Yvette 02.16.2010

    I have done the mismatched shoes in my lifetime – probably more than once.
    Wow you are heading to my hometown. You will have a blast. I miss home especially right now with the big Super Bowl win and Mardi Gras all together.

  4. Ashley 02.16.2010

    That jambalaya looked delicious! It was on the menu to make tonight, but getting home late won over! Glad you enjoyed! Have fun in the Big Easy, what great timing you have! I’d be super stoked!

    Have a great evening!

  5. Tina 02.16.2010

    That is too funny about the shoes!!!

    Your vacation sounds perfect. I love vacations where you can explore a bit. And exploring good food will be even better ;) I’m a Southern gal, but surprisingly am not too huge on the traditional Southern food.

  6. Leena 02.16.2010

    hahahaha! i’ve done the shoe thing before – along with leaving the house in slippers… not that’s embarrassing! :)
    that jambalaya looks delicious! i’ve never made it before, but i would love to. i’ll have to save the recipe!
    and the road food festival sounds like a blast – you will have a great time i’m sure!!

  7. Hayley 02.16.2010

    OH NEW ORLEANS!!!! Im from Louisiana-currently stationed in England. Im missing southern food so much and enjoy to see your post featuring a yummy cajun dish! While in New Orleans Yall mustmustmust go to Cafe Du Monde. Oh the Beignets are truly the best in the world! And remember Laissez les Bon Temps Rouler!!!

  8. Oh, I can totally understand the shoe situation… It happend to me, more then once! Hehe :P
    Oh, and by the way – you´re so lucky that New Orleans´s Roadfood Festival will happend during your stay! I bet you´re gonna have BLAST… You and Ben :)
    Brazilian XOXO´s,
    Gabriela

  9. Kristin 02.16.2010

    Oh my gosh, my family went to NOLA over Christmas 2009 (it was my first time) and I LOVED IT!!!!! So much history!!! I’ll try to think of my favorite moments for you.

    1. Cafe du Monde has amazing chicory coffee and beignets. It’s right across from St. Louis Cathedral, which is BEAUTIFUL and has an amazing mass.

    2. Just walking around the French Quarter was one of my favorite parts of the trip. I love the buildings and the little hidden courtyards behind the buildings.

    3. The riverfront was really fun and pretty–just don’t get scammed into $20 tourist traps like we almost did! Don’t let anyone shine your shoes or talk to you about your shoes at all!!!

    4. You have to try a pecan praline somewhere. They literally melt in your mouth and are so rich it took me two days to eat one.

    5. We took the green street car about 10 minutes to the Garden District, which is where all the rich Creoles used to live, and it was GORGEOUS, as in, I want to move there immediately. And any street car in general is just really fun!

    6. Everyone says to try Acme Oyster House just off of Bourbon Street, but my brother and I waited in line for an hour to try it and it was not very good and the service was terrible and it felt like a smaller version of Buffalo Wild Wings or something. Very commercial.

    7. My favorite restaurant there (and we tried a LOT of restaurants) was called Desire, located on Bourbon Street. It was the first place we ate. I had shrimp creole there and my brother had crawfish etouffee, and we both became obsessed. They have this AWESOME hot sauce that I actually purchased to take home to Des Moines. :D

    8. Other restaurants we liked included Mother’s, which was across from our hotel and a total local tradition with lines out the door each day all day (I loved their turtle soup). Also, a ton of little seafood restaurants in the Bourbon Street area were cool. Can’t remember their names now.

    9. Our favorite bar (if you are into dives and places with history) was Jean Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop off Bourbon Street. No lights–only candles!!!!! And a piano!!!! Kinda creepy (ghost tours start there) but a total real experience. The oldest bar in New Orleans, and one of the oldest in the country, supposedly!!!

    10. Abita beer is really fun to try. So are muffalettas and fried green tomatoes. AND Zapp’s brand Spicy Creole Tomato potato chips. They are terrible for you but oh so good, and you’ll be on vacation so who cares! :o)

    11. Crescent City Brewpub is fun for local beer and jazz.

    12. We tried to visit a cemetery but they had really weird hours–we showed up at 12:01 on a Sunday afternoon and they had just closed! So we did a ghost tour instead :D It was done by Bloody Mary (supposedly the best tour guide) and was actually really fun!

    13. The antique shops are all cool because they have so many old chandeliers and things from the rich homes when they all got raided back in the day. Fun to wander through for a few minutes.

    14. One of the coolest things we did was actually rent a car and drive out into the bayou and see old plantation homes. Being from Iowa I feel totally sheltered to the whole southern thing and slave life. It was SO FASCINATING–the tour guides wouldn’t really talk about slaves. But we walked through a SLAVE CABIN THAT WAS ACTUALLY IN USE!!!!!! It was very surreal and historic. Plus, it was right on the Mississippi, which was huge.

    15. One of my favorite parts of reliving New Orleans is the bag of Community Coffee, which I bought from a Community Coffee shop in the French Quarter. Their coffee is awesome–love the breakfast blend–and they also sell chicory coffee. I would go there with my laptop all the time if I lived in NOLA. It’s just a fun place to pop in.

    OKAY–obviously the Travel Channel should pay me to go there for as much as I’ve written about this. :o) You’ll have to keep us all posted on your trip planning! I’m jealous!!!

    Kristin

    • Chinye 02.17.2010

      This post comes right in time! My bf and I are literally leaving for New Orleans tomorrow for a long weekend. I wrote down everyone’s suggestions and will be sure to report back as to what we did and where to go!

      @Kristin February 16, 2010 at 8:24 pm, you literally gave a real good overview and I can’t wait to try somethings out. I was wondering if you can tell me which plantation by the bayou you visited. That is one of the things I’m really interested in doing. Thanks in advance!

      • Kristin 02.18.2010

        We visited Laura Plantation at http://www.lauraplantation.com/ !!! Hope it’s not too late! There are a few more in the area–this one just got the best reviews, so we tried it. Loved it!!!

        Kristin

  10. Margaret 02.16.2010

    We just went to/ate our way through New Orleans after Christmas. It was our first time there. We enjoyed the Gumbo Shop near Jackson Square where we had gumbo (obviously) and red beans & rice. Also had to try a beignet at Cafe Du Monde. There was a really, really long line to eat in so we were happy to find a short to-go line that formed in the “alley” behind the seating area. Mother’s Restaurant seemed to be popular with a local crowd. We had a po’boy there, and they are known for their ham. Central Grocery on Decatur St. is the home of the muffuleta, but they sold out early in the day so don’t wait for dinner if you want one! Have fun! Going during the Roadfood Festival sounds ideal. :)

  11. I love southern food. I lived down in Louisiana for a few years as a kid and grew to love gumbo and the like.

  12. Becky 02.16.2010

    I laughed out loud at the shoe story! Totally something I would do. Sounds like a great vacation coming up, too! Love food festivals.

  13. Abby 02.16.2010

    OMG!! NOLA is my FAVORITE place on Earth!! My family and I always stay at The Chateau, on the corner of Chartres and St. Philip. It’s a REALLY old hotel, but many of the rooms are nice (we did get one crappy one). It has rooms with balconies overlooking the street, and some with balconies overlooking the pool. It’s about 4 blocks from Bourbon St in The Quarter. Pretty much EVERY place you eat there is a-ma-zing, but my favorite is one of the weirdest… at Cafe Beignet on Bourbon, they have the world’s best tuna salad sandwich. Tuna, bacon and white cheddar on a croissant. Boo-ya. I’ll keep thinking, and let you know other great things I come up with! I recommend a cemetery tour, and renting a car to drive around to see hurricane damage, and drive across the world’s longest bridge.

  14. Hehe your shoe mishap is funny! At least they looked alike!! So exciting about your trip and the RoadFood Festival! What perfect timing!! I’ve never been to NOLA but I’m sure you will have a blast! Since I am a southerner, of course I love some southern food!

  15. Stephanie 02.16.2010

    love the shoe story, goofyyyy! :)
    my boyfriend was actually in new orleans last year for mardi gras (for a bachelor party – and i was home sick with a horrible case of the flu – so yea i was a wreck haha) and he loved it, said the food was amazing (bc i’m sure that’s what they were doing, “dining out” :P), hope you and ben have a great trip! excited to see it all through a great food blogger’s eyes.

  16. KKH 02.16.2010

    Just got back from New Orleans this weekend! I had THE best time there! What do I recommend? I recommend trying it all and not sleeping until you get back home! I would also recommend Antoine’s… it’s down in the French Quarter.

    Have fun! I will definitely be going back!

  17. NS 02.16.2010

    Check out the Catholic Foodie podcast from SQPN.com. Jeff is from New Orleans and often talks about the great food he’s had in the area.

  18. Yay how exciting!! I’ve always wanted to go there!
    What a delicious dinner. I have a love affair with cornbread. Oh gosh. SO freaking good.

  19. AmyLou 02.16.2010

    Ooooh, your trip sounds like so much fun! I can’t wait to live vicariously through you!

    And that is HIL-AR-I-OUS about your shoes!!!! Too funny!!

    Finally, could there have seriously been any more commercials during LOST? Seriously, I think 20 minutes of the show was pure commercials!! Boooo!!!

  20. Mary Ann 02.17.2010

    I love southern food! I gained 5 pounds when I was in Mississippi visiting an aunt several years ago (we were there 8 days!). Grits are yummy!

    I’m going to New Orleans for the first time in July! Probably a bad time to visit as far as heat and humidity, but we’re taking a Gulf Cruise out of there and afterwards staying in the city for a week or so. I hope you have some awesome spots to hit up! ;D

  21. Chelsea 02.17.2010

    I live in New Orleans!

    I hadn’t heard about the food festival… but I really want to check it out!

    You definitely have to go to Cafe Du Monde in the French Market, like other people have said.. order to go & eat by the river.

    for late night food in the French Quarter after a night out, Quartermaster is amazing – delicious, cheap, & open 24 hours.

    the best po-boys in the city are out of the French Quarter, in my opinion… I love Liuzza’s By The Track (the BBQ shrimp is incredible) or Parkway Bakery, which are both right by my house in mid-city, on Bayou St. John), or uptown, Parasol’s is great.

    as far as bars, check out Frenchmen Street (in the Marigny neighborhood, right next to the French Quarter) – lots of great places to see (mostly free) live music… this is where locals go to avoid the tourists on Bourbon Street.

    feel free to e-mail me for more suggestions or specific questions. I love talking to people about my (recently adopted) city!

  22. Oooh Fat Tuesday must be the equivilant of English Pancake Day!? I think our day sounds healthier :P
    HAHA about your shoes, that’s so funny!! I actually LOLd out loud :D
    Have an awesome day!

  23. Melinda 02.17.2010

    That is so funny about the shoe mix-up!! :D

    That Jambalya looks amazing- my Mom likes to make that alot.

  24. Kate 02.17.2010

    OMG, you are going to have the best time in New Orleans. I lived there for a summer. Some things I’d recommend:
    1. Take an airboat swamp tour. They’re hard to find and more expensive after Katrina, but they’re very very cool.
    2. There is a Greyline walking tour of the French Quarter (request Tom if you can) that gives you a lot of historical background of the town and shows you places you might not otherwise see. It ends at the medical museum which has all sorts of creepy old medical tools and shows you how they used to roll pills.
    3. Ralph and Kacoo’s has great cajun food, but I also second all of the places already mentioned by others.
    4. Walk around Jackson square and look at all the artwork hung on the fences by street vendors.
    5. Definitely ride a street car into the Garden District to look at the old houses.

  25. Diana 02.17.2010

    Thanks for the early morning laugh :) Too cute!

  26. Dave 02.17.2010

    I tried the yogurt breakfast for my 17 year old daughter and I. I liked it a lot, but she had eaten the last of the almonds so had none to add. They would have been a welcome addition to the flavor blend. Thanks for the easy idea.

  27. MsAmanda 02.17.2010

    I have never eaten as well as I did in New Orleans. My favorite meal was fried chicken, beans and rice with a mean bloody mary @ Coop’s Place http://www.coopsplace.net/ unreal.

    The Frenchman area is great. Our foodie friend who lives there sent us to Adolfo’s, where we had the most amazing dinner. Their service is very, shall we say, relaxed. It is the upstairs of a bar, one big room. When we were eating our appetizer, one of the chefs opened a slatted wooden shutter to ask me what kind of pasta side I had. http://www.yelp.com/biz/adolfos-new-orleans

    Also, the circular bar at the Hotel Monteleone is very cool. And Abita is so tasty (you can buy it here at some Hyvees, Gateway and World Market, but it isn’t as good)

  28. Sara 02.17.2010

    Ha ha ha! That’s so funny about your shoes! You’re jumbalaya looks great. I’m not a big fan of southern food, just because I’ve never had it alot (grew up in CA and AZ), plus it’s usually not the healthiest stuff. :)

  29. HA! I totally did that with my shoes earlier this year! I have a pair of black flipflops that I wear in warm weather — only last september I put them on and just like you, they felt funny. I got to work and BOOM! I had on one of my shoes and one of my husband’s black flipflops! And no, our feet are nowhere near the same size!

  30. AP 02.17.2010

    Beignets are SO good! My aunt and uncle live in New Orleans, but I haven’t been there since I was 9 so my memories are lacking a little bit.
    Going to the swamp and seeing alligators (crocodiles? whichever it is) IN THE WILD blew my mind at the time. Oh, and of course the fresh seafood (shrimp boil anyone?) is to die for. The French Quarter is the cutest neighborhood. Unlike anything we have here in Iowa. You’ll have a great time!

  31. Julie 02.17.2010

    lol @ the shoes. Last week my co worker came in with one sneaker and one loafer. Hilarity insued.
    I love southern food!

    Have fun in NO!!!

  32. Mary 02.17.2010

    I can so relate to the shoe mess up. When I married my husband, I had on 2 different shoes. One was brown and one was black. We were married by a Justice of the Peace. I guess my nerves got the best of me that day. But it must have been a good thing. We have been happily married for 11 yrs.

  33. jen 02.17.2010

    oh my gosh, the shoes are hilarious! there was a girl in high school who did that once with two different pairs of doc martins. i’ll never forget that! ha!

    i’ve never been to new orleans either. Can’t wait to hear your perspective!

  34. Kelsey Huebsch 02.17.2010

    We love New Orleans! My family went there for spring break 3 years in a row during high school. The weather is so pleasant during that time of year.
    I could spend all day listing our favorite spots to dine, drink, dance, listen to music, etc. but a couple places stand out.
    I love breakfast and lunch at QSR (Quarter Scene Restaurant)! They have the BEST gumbo I’ve ever had and I frequently compare every other gumbo I eat to the QSR version. Their waffle with fruit and homemade whip cream is TO DIE FOR! I hope it’s still there. I believe it’s just a couple blocks off the Burbon street, an easy walk we did more than once each trip.
    Also, NOLA, one of Emmeril’s restaurants is amazing! The best meal of my life. Such good service, amazing and unique options, live music, right off Jackson square. It’s pricy but worth every penny.
    I haven’t been to New Orleans since Katrina, and am dying to go back. I can’t wait to hear how you and Ben enjoy it!
    Have a great day!

  35. Kelsey Huebsch 02.17.2010

    Oh yeah,
    The bar The Funky Butt is in a neat neighborhood a couple blocks off Bourbon and has such an amazing atmosphere. It’s where a lot of the Jazz greats, in singing and instrumentally, got started. I think Ben might enjoy that too!

  36. Michelle K 02.17.2010

    i’m going to new orleans also for spring break!! i’ll be there the 5th-14th with my school’s christian fellowship working with habitat for humanity. so excited!!!

  37. Lyndsey 02.17.2010

    My husband is from NOLA and we live in north Louisiana.
    1.) shopping on Magazine Street- best shopping in town
    2.) Sucre on Magazine- you won’t see pastry or chocolate like that this side of Paris. It is amazing and delicious. They serve all kinds of things. Very worth going to.
    3.) Tujague’s in the Quarter- very cool antique bar there. The food is wonderful as well.
    4.)If you want a fancy unforgettable dinner, Antoines. Their baked Alaska is unreal. The food and service there not to mention the history is incredible. Ask for Chetta, as a waiter. Definitely want reservations.
    5.) Brennan’s or Court of Two Sisters for brunch. Maybe Brennan’s has the edge for their bananas foster. WOW!
    6.)Commander’s Palace is fine dining but very good.
    7.)If you are able to drive around outside the city, that is cool to be able to see swampy area and plantation homes. But walking everywhere in the Quarter is so much fun. I still vividly remember hearing a street performer sing Alicia Key’s No One so awesome, I still get chills when I think of that memory. It’s for sure a city of life.
    8.)Emeril has several restaurants there that are very good.
    9.)Mother’s is great. Best bloody mary and john g with debris:) Trust me, that will be your husband’s favorite meal!
    10.) Mespero’s in the Quarter for casual great dining.
    Touristy things are beignets, coffee and pralines, can’t go wrong. You will love NOLA. The city envelops you in jazzy goodness. Always a fun trip!

  38. BroccoliHut 02.17.2010

    As an Alabama, girl I LOVE Southern food–I can’t get enough collard greens:)

  39. [...] I never changed my shoes before leaving.  Yesterday, I laughed out loud when I read this post about a blogger who went to work wearing two different shoes.  Apparently today it was my turn to [...]

  40. Lee 02.17.2010

    Haha, I realized that I have two different earrings on today.

  41. Wow – that looks amazing! The jambalaya and the New Orleans event. That should be really exciting! :-)

    I do really love Southern food and really should venture out to some more Creole places around town. That would be so awesome to go to New Orleans and experience it first hand!

    K

  42. Loli 02.22.2010

    I totally stole your idea and made jambalaya for fat tuesday, but supplemented Smart Ground tofu chorizo sausages to make it healthier. Soooo good! My husband and I went to New Orleans during Mardi Gras two years ago and it was one of my favorite vacations. Here is what I would suggest:

    Central Grocery-Hands down, their muffalata is the best sandwich I ever had! We actually ate here 2x because they were so delicious. You must promise to go here and try one!

    Mother’s- Good for eating up the kinds of dishes your southern grandma would serve. Not as good as NOLA or even close to Cental Grocery.

    Cafe Du Monde-Just like everyone said these things are little pillows of bliss. They are open late so don’t feel like you have to rush here first thing.

    Pascal Manales- Best BBQ shrimp you will ever eat! This stuff is legendary and was featured on Food Network’s “Best Thing I Ever Ate.”

    Pat O’Brians-Stop here and get a hurricane. They make these drinks stiff and delicious.

    Free Boat Ride-Yep, it is free! Hop on the Algiers Ferry and it takes you to the other side of the Mississippi to the historic Algiers neighborhood. Great for getting a view of the city from the water.

    NOLA -we ate here and thought it was pretty good. They had the best crab cakes ever, but we also ordered the bread pudding which was not good at all.

    Cooking School- Check out the area for a cooking school. The one we went to closed, but there are more that came up in my google search. We spent a few hours learning to make pralines, gumbo, and cornbread with a woman who could have been Paula Deen’s sister! So fun and you get a good sampling of everything.

    Oak Ally Plantation- Stay here in one of their bungalows for a night. So fun to say you stayed on a plantation and if you are daring take a walk at night around the plantation house.

    Laura’s Plantation-Take the tour here and you will be an expert on plantations after. Very informative and richer in history than Oak Ally, though both are good to see.

    Hope that helps!

  43. shannon 02.26.2010

    I live in New Orleans, but have only been here a year, so I’m no where near an expert on the area, sites, and food yet, but I know enough. Are you staying in the French Quarter? Either way you’ll definitely have to spend some time walking around there and seeing the standards… Jackson Square, Bourbon St, the acrobat guys performing by the water, Cafe Du Monde… usually with live street jazz musicians playing outside, some local artists, and a few voodoo places. I highly suggest venturing out of the French Quarter also though. We live Uptown, and that is my favorite area. You can go to St. Charles St (which is beautiful with huge old oak trees and fun old houses) and take the street car (don’t call it a trolley!!!!). You can also go to Magazine St and see all the fun local shopping… great fashions, jewelry etc., lots of fun coffee shops and good food. Audubon Park (or City Park in Mid-City) is beautiful, and great for a picnic, a game of frisbee, or a walk or job… it’s 1.8 miles around.

    As to what to eat… you need to have a Hurricane, beignets, coffee with chickory, a po-boy (maybe from Mother’s… they’re world famous), Barbequed Shrimp (no, it’s not shrimp with BBQ sauce, that’s just what they call it), a snowball (called snow cone in other parts of the country…. but not here!), and some boiled crawfish…. those are the quinessentials… some jambalaya, gumbo, bananas foster, and shrimp creole wouldn’t hurt either. I can recommend places to eat if you tell me where you’ll be staying or visiting. There are so many good ones here! I often end up eating more ethnic food (of which we have an amazing assortment) than creole food when I go out, cause it’s cheaper and more vegetarian friendly, but I’ve dabbled in some of the New Orleans classic places.

    Email me with any questions, and most of all, enjoy your trip!!!!

  44. Maurice McDonald 03.04.2010

    Hi excellent website yea nice work It sounds like you’re creating problems yourself by trying to solve this issue instead of looking at why their is a problem in the first place.

  45. Colleen 03.07.2010

    We actually just got back from our first trip to NOLA – my husband and I ran the Mardi Gras half marathon! We’ve written up a bit of the sights and restaurants that we enjoyed – among them Stanley, Port of Call, Irene’s, Frenchman Street… all of our nitty gitty is here if you want to check it out: http://colleenandnick.com/wordpress/?tag=new-orleans

  46. [...] you may know, Ben and I are heading down to New Orleans here shortly, and I thought it’d be a great time to put up some guest posts from bloggers [...]

  47. [...] Mom and I had a very successful shopping trip and I am all stocked up with fun outfits for New Orleans. It’s supposed to be in the low 70s the whole time we are there – SO [...]

  48. NS 03.22.2010

    OHHH—- I LOVE NOLA! It is so romantic and mysterious– the food is to die for!! I loved the legendary chef Paul Prudhomme’s restaurant called KPaul’s! The food is gooooooooood! Be sure to make advance reservations and ask to sit upstairs on the balcony!
    Have fun!

  49. Jacki 05.01.2010

    Loved New Orleans. We tried to avoid all chain or commericial restaurants. Agree that Coops was one of my favorites. Tiny place, excellent food. Was surprised I didn’t see anyone mention Jacque-Imos. Best food I ever had, massive menu, ecclectic atmosphere. It was in the garden district on Oak Street almost to the end of the St Charles Trolley route. About a 3-4 block walk from one of the stops. If I hadn’t been directed there, I would have missed it due to the ancient, gray, business looking building. Inside was magical and they have the moxie to run you through the kitchen to get to seating. Get there early though. We were they are 5pm when they opened and it filled up fast. I’m not sure if the overflow seating area was as cool as where we were in the back.

    Pat O’Briens fire and water fountain was pretty cool on the back patio. We did the Laura and Oak Alley plantations- one white plantation and one creole, amazing differences. Also the swamp tour, though living on the Mississippi in Iowa the scenery wasn’t alot different than the backwaters but the alligators were!

    We found a bar called the “the grand ole opry” that we liked that ironically played 80’s music. Probably why we liked it. For the early risers, you will be interested to know that they spray down the streets in the french quarter with disinfectant from a tank truck in the mornings. Seriously a good thing.

  50. [...] couple months ago I went to work wearing one shoe from two different pairs of black flats. [...]

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