Guinea Gumbo

Dark, rich and mysterious -- guinea gumbo.  (All photos credit: George Graham)

I remember it like it was yesterday: the day, over thirty years ago, that I first tasted a guinea gumbo and was immediately initiated into the colorful world of Cajun and Creole cooking. That one deep dark bowlful taught me volumes about a cuisine that has been heralded by many and misunderstood by many more…. 

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Alligator sausages nesting on a bed of griddled red onions and beer gravy.  (All photos credit: George Graham)

The German Cajuns of Roberts Cove

There is an area just west of Lafayette that is known for its German heritage. Roberts Cove is at the center of it, and it is home to a long lineage of German immigrants that settled the Acadiana prairie in 1880.  This was a little over a century after the French Acadians found their way to South … [Read More...]

Beefy short rib flavor with spicy pepper jack is at the center of this classic sandwich.

Shredded Short Rib Showstopper

Every now and then you run into a dish that is the proverbial showstopper. It’s as if spotlights are shining down on the plate and the paparazzi are clicking away to get a shot from every angle. With this sandwich, a star is born. The inspiration for this combination comes from a little joint I … [Read More...]

Spicy Griddled Eggplant with Meyer Lemon Parsley Vinaigrette

Griddled Graffiti Eggplant with Meyer Lemon Parsley Vinaigrette

For all you vegetarians out there (yes, both of you), I have an easy recipe on today’s Acadiana Table that will rock your world. Now, for the rest of us this dish is just as good as a side accompaniment for a grilled pork chop or even a before dinner appetizer. It is eggplant as you’ve never had it … [Read More...]

Piping hot fried green tomatoes add a crunchy contrast to the cold and creamy rémoulade sauce.

Remarkable Rémoulade

When I glance at a menu and see anything featuring rémoulade sauce, I’m salivating. Usually, it’s a straightforward shrimp appetizer served on a bed of shredded iceberg that in the hands of a cook that has their rémoulade repertoire figured out is well worth ordering. But recently I was astounded to … [Read More...]

St. Louis-cut spare ribs smoked to perfection and glazed at just the right time.  (All photos credit: George Graham)

Spare Change

“Low and slow, son,” that’s what my daddy always told me was the key to cooking ribs. He’d fire up the pit on a Saturday morning and by the time the afternoon sun was setting, we’d be in pig heaven. Growing up in small town Louisiana, pork ribs -- especially spareribs (my father's favorite) -- was … [Read More...]

Cajun-Fried Catfish Banh Mi

Cajun-Fried Catfish Bánh Mì

For obvious reason, here in South Louisiana a bánh mì sandwich is referred to as a Vietnamese po-boy. Built upon a similar French bread loaf, it doesn’t take a great stretch of imagination to see the similarities in the two sandwiches. But upon second glance, the two have even more in common than … [Read More...]

Peach Muscadine Sangria

Peach Muscadine Sangria

Poolside afternoons in the heat of summer are just begging for a fresh, fruity cocktail – ice-cold with just a hint of fragrant sweetness.  I usually revert to a pitcher of margaritas or mojitos, but lately I’ve been thinking a lot about sangria. I’ll admit it: Sangria is not an especially Cajun, … [Read More...]

Whole Salt Snapper Herbs

Lake Peigneur Salt Dome Snapper

  A little-known fact is that coastal southwest Louisiana right along the southern portion of Acadiana is built on a series of natural salt domes. Avery Island (home of Tabasco), Jefferson Island and Weeks Island are all built atop geological caverns that house salt formations. Over the past … [Read More...]

Kale Caesar Shrimp Horiz_

Kale Yeah!

For the past few years, fresh kale has been on a run showing up on restaurant menus all over America. Even here at my Acadiana Table, I’ve tossed it into soups, braised it in stews and served it pan sautéed as a side dish. So, this weekend I stumbled on a neat trick while making a simple Caesar … [Read More...]

Smoked Turkey Leg Stew

Meat and Three and a Jar of Sweet Tea

Noontime in Acadiana means heading for your favorite lunchroom for a meat-and-three plate of down-home cooking.  Throughout South Louisiana, the cafes and diners are lined with all sorts of folks bellying up to the counters and tables in search of a hearty lunch.  It’s not unusual to see a truck … [Read More...]

Chicken Braised in Tarragon Cream

Tarragon, But Not Forgotten

French tarragon is an alluring aromatic herb, and when used with subtleness, it can turn most any humble dish – chicken especially -- into a showcase of sublime flavor.  But, I didn’t always cook with tarragon until one night I was properly introduced to a now-favorite ingredient. I recall dining … [Read More...]

Praline Cream Float

Swamp Pop Praline Cream Float with Spiced Rum

Ice cream floats have always been a weakness. I remember a simpler time and place sitting at the soda fountain at my neighborhood Rexall drug store sipping a root beer float and flipping the pages of the latest Archie comic. Ok, so that was a few long years ago, but the memories linger on. These … [Read More...]

A black pot of rural Cajun pork jambalaya. (All photos credit: George Graham)

Cajun Pork Jambalaya

Jambalaya – that defining dish that speaks the language of Louisiana. But as is the case with many Louisiana dishes, there are two distinctly different styles of jambalaya in Louisiana – Creole and Cajun.  Perhaps, it is this dish that most defines the two culinary cultures. The point is that Creole … [Read More...]

This award-winning burger is perfect for your July 4th cook-out.  (All photos credit: George Graham)

Red, White and Bluesiana

The Fourth of July holiday is my favorite family holiday: no last-minute dash for flowers, no arduous trek to the mall for gifts, not even a holiday card.  It’s just a leisurely American celebration of family and freedom. And it’s the perfect day to fire up the grill. I’ve always had a hunger for … [Read More...]

A Galatoire's creation - crispy black drum in a butter lemon sauce studded with almonds and topped with fresh crabmeat. (All photos credit: George Graham)

Drumming Up A New Dish

Once relegated to a catch-and-release fish unworthy of the dinner table, black drum has ascended the culinary ladder to become a center-of-the-plate star in its own right. One theory is that it is following the coattails of its cousin the red drum (or redfish, as you know it), which with the help of … [Read More...]