Coseppi Kitchen

Inclusive Vegetarian Cooking by Taylor Cook & James Seppi

Posts Tagged "New Orleans"

Big Easy Veggie: Part 3

Cafe du Monde cafe au lait and beignets

On our third and final day in New Orleans, we mounted our bikes and rode downtown instead of walking.  As you are probably aware, New Orleans is extremely flat, and this fact made biking on a warm spring day a pure pleasure.  To help fill our calorie deficit caused from riding a whole 12 miles, we lunched on the famous beignets and cafe au lait from Cafe de Monde.  You might think that beignets are just square donuts, and while that is certainly true, fresh donuts are quite tasty and pair well with the bitter chicory coffee.

Whenever visitors think of New Orleans Creole food they typically think of French Creole fusion, but New Orleans also has a rich Italian heritage as well. Sicilian immigrants to New Orleans worked with local ingredients to create now classic dishes featuring shellfish, creamy garlic sauces, eggplant, and “red gravy.” In pursuit of this culinary tradition our friend took us to Liuzza’s for dinner.

Greg and James at Liuzza's

Liuzza’s is a cozy neighborhood restaurant with abundant pescetarian options, but the vegetarian selection is rather limited. However, we’re used to enjoying delicious traditional foods in establishments that might not consider their cuisine compatible with our diet.  We started with a stuffed artichoke and then shared a plate of pasta alfredo.  The stuffed artichoke was rich and savory and the pasta was  swimming in a fresh homemade alfredo sauce of cheese, cream, butter, and garlic – delicious!

To cap our healthy day off, we went to what was the real gem of the day – Angelo Brocato’s Ice Cream Shop in Midtown.   Angelo Brocato’s prepares fresh Italian baked pastries and rich ice cream desserts like spumoni and tortoni.  Taylor tried her first ever cannoli and the three of us split a tortoni, which is an almond-flavored frozen soufflee (see here). While Midtown is not on most tourist’s path, this bakery is well worth the trip.

Big Easy Veggie: Part 2

On our first free day in New Orleans James and I decided to take in as much of the city as we could on foot. The friend we are staying with  attends Tulane Law School on the north-side of the city. Our mission was was to travel the 5 miles from there to the French Quarter and along the way find a good Louisiana-style vegetarian lunch.

Okra Po'Boy from Mahoney's

After wandering past seemingly endless blocks of Victorian mansions on St. Charles Street, we turned west toward the river and found ourselves on surrounded by boutiques, antique stores, and restaurants on Magazine Street. Increasingly warm and hungry, we happened upon Mahoney’s Po’Boy Shop just as the grumbling in our stomachs was becoming unbearable.  Luckily for us, Mahoney’s had a Fried Okra Po’Boy special for the day, as well as several other vegetarian po’boy options – including Fried Green Tomatoes, Eggplant Parmesan, Grilled Cheese, and even a Potato Chip Po’Boy.  We opted for the Fried Okra and Fried Green Tomato sandwiches. When okra is abundant it is easy to get tired of it, but after a whole year without it (okra does not exist in any reliable quantity in Peru) this fried okra sandwich was divine.  Both po’boys were moistened by homemade remoulade, consisting primarily of mayonnaise seasoned with horseradish, green onions, and chopped hard boiled eggs.

Abita Strawberry Harvest Lager

After separating ourselves from the table, we resumed our trek to the center of town only to be halted once again by a sign advertising a $2 seasonal Abita. The Strawberry Harvest Lager is a light refreshing beer with a strawberry finish. Not a bad way to cool off and relax on a beautiful warm spring day.

We did eventually make it down to the French Quarter – it was beautiful and Bourbon Street smelled bad – then we treated ourselves to a street car ride home where we committed round one of an attempt at vegetarian gumbo. More on that later…

Big Easy Veggie: Part 1

Adventure Car on the ferry in Cameron Parish

This Sunday James and I set out on our first trip to New Orleans, Louisiana. The trip was prompted by an invitation from a close friend which coincided with a week of fantastic weather. Is there a better way to embrace the spirit of spring than with a road trip under a blue sky with the windows down? No, there is not. So, we strapped the bikes onto the car, packed our cleanest clothes, and hit the open road.

This drive took us east from Austin to Houston. Then, rather than take the interstate in to Louisiana we decided to venture along the Creole Nature Trail, also known as Highway 82. This route parallels the Gulf of Mexico allowing us to take in some interesting views of beaches, wetlands, and numerous massive oil and petrochemical refineries. True to its name, this scarcely-traveled two-lane highway is indeed a nature trail and in this coastal landscape we spotted thousands of birds, several snakes, a few alligators, a beaver, and a wild boar!

We are old hands at road trips having traversed the North American continent by car this past summer. At that time we learned a thing or two about eating well on the road and our favorite car snack, whenever we had a chance to make it, was hummus with sliced vegetables. For this trip we were armed with a healthy selection of carrots and radishes from the Saturday farmer’s market and a fresh batch of Megamaga Hummus. Car trips can be exhausting, but eating well and staying hydrated helped us reach our destination ready to take on (almost) any adventure the Big Easy has to offer.



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