FanPost

Rough Cut: Eating the Enemy, Round 1

And now, the real season begins... 0 down, 16 to go. First up, we have the New Orleans Hornets.

The Cal SBN blog, California Golden Blogs, previews each football game with an "Eating the Enemy" post, complete with a recipe on how to cook trees, ducks, beavers, huskies, bruins, wildcats... sundevils... trojans...

With proper credit given to their original idea, I would like to take my on twist to the theme. For each of the four (knock on wood) rounds, I will create a FanPost detailing the cuisine of the town the Lakers will be playing in. And I couldn't think of a better opponent to start off with than the Hornets, both because of the match-ups and the cuisine (!!!!!!!!)

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First of all... What in the name of Lewis Monroe is the difference between Creole and Cajun?

There is no bright line between the two, but Creole generally refers to the descendants of the French and Spanish settlers in the Caribbean and Central America. Cajuns on the other hand are descendants of the Acadians, or the French settlers of Acadie, (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island).

How did French Canadians (eh) get down to Nawlins? Well, after the British conquered Canada, they offered French Canadians the right to maintain their culture and lifestyle in exchange for an unconditional oath to Crown. Those that refused (mostly situated in Acadie) were expelled to the nearest French colony, which was Louisiana and New Orleans.

Bah! Boring history is boring! MOAR FOOD, NAO!

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Red Beans and Rice

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Red beans and rice... the glorious combination of al dente rice and stewed red kidney beans. What makes the beans really special is the what it is stewed with. One onion, two bell peppers, and three stalks of celery form the Holy Trinity, or the base for nearly all of the cuisine of New Orleans. In addition, pickled pork is sauteed as well for even more flavor. 

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Gumbo

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Another New Orleans classic... made from seafood, roux (cooked mixture of wheat flour and fat, and VERY HARD TO MAKE), and once again, the Holy Trinity. The big debate about gumbo is on what else should be included... okra? or filé powder?

Okra is a slimy, but oh so good vegetable from Africa, and it lends its slime as a thickening agent for Gumbo. Filé powder, on the other hand, is a spice made from ground up sassafras, and is also a powerful thickening agent. Personally, I am TeamOkra, but you can't really go wrong!

Also, a fun but of trivia: the word "Gumbo" is either derived from the African word for okra, or ki ngombo, or the Choctow word for filé powder, or kombo

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Char Grilled Oysters

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Ah, oysters, a New Orleans favorite. I mean, it is a port city. Oysters as food is obvious.

Just as obvious is how these are prepared. No fuss with the Holy Trinity or roux, but just garlic, cheese and butter and a hot grill. 

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Trout Amandine

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Trout Amandine, another example of simplicity equating amazing. A fillet of trout is seasoned, then dredged in milk, then flour, and pan fried in butter. Top it off with a lemon and sliced almonds (hence the Amandine), and you're all set.

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Poboy

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Ah, more simplicity in action. Deep fried seafood with lettuce, tomato, mayo, mustard in a sandwich.

More trivia: Yes, the po' boy is derived from "poor boy". Legend has it that the inventor of the po' boy served up the sandwiches to workers on strike, who were then referred to as "poor boys". Why, I haven't the faintest clue...

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Stuffed Mirlitons

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One of the lesser known dishes outside of New Orleans, mirlitons are often stuffed with shrimp and crab, along with the Holy Trinity, green onions and topped with bread crumbs. They are then baked until golden brown and delicious.

This dish is a good example of the global influences on New Orleans. We all know the French, Caribbean and African influences on the cuisine of Southern Louisiana, but mirlitons originated in the Americas and then spread across the globe. 

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Daube Glacé

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Feel thrown off by this unappetizing picture? Daube glacé is an example of not judging a book by it's cover. Yes, it is gelatin with beef broth and cooked vegetables and meat. I have had it in New Orleans, trust me on this one. This stuff is GOOD.

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Crawfish Boil

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No way I would rather wrap up the inaugural Silver Screen and Roll "Eating the Enemy" than with a Crawfish boil. These relatives of lobsters are boiled with spices, corn, potatoes and Andouille sausage. But how do you eat them?

Step #1: Pull off the "tail" and squeeze the meat out.

Step #2: "Suck the head". Yes, this is how they describe it down there... 

So very messy, soooooooo very good.

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So there you have it! Eating the Enemy('s food). Hopefully your tongues are once again salivating, and talk more food porn! If you have any other favorites from New Orleans, pictures or it didn't happen.

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