It’s time to drag out your beads, throw down some King Cake and celebrate Mardi Gras. The celebration, which means Fat Tuesday in French, is the final day for feasting before the beginning of Lent, which starts the following Ash Wednesday. The Farmer’s Almanac has a fabulous history of Mardi Gras and the many meanings it has to different cultures.
But for us, at The Food Channel, it’s an excuse to enjoy some delightful New Orleans style food and beverage!
Rich garlicky beef pan gravy with bits of falling-apart tender roast beef, affectionately known as debris (pronounced DAY-bree) in New Orleans, takes this classic roast beef po’ boy over the top. Recipe here.
A twist on the traditional, Muffuletta Sliders will make your Mardi Gras event an authentic Louisiana experience. Stuffed with cheese, three kinds of meats, and a unique creole relish. Recipe here.
The ultimate po’boy! This indulgent sandwich features rich juicy oysters, deep fried golden and delicious, piled in soft warm French rolls with creamy Remoulade sauce. Recipe here.
Hearty slow-simmered traditional gumbo served ladled over steamed white rice. Traditionally made with smoked ham, jumbo shrimp, okra, and just a hint of Cajun seasoning for that spicy kick. Recipe here.
Bananas Foster is a classic New Orleans dish with a bit of a showmanship, plus it’s a fun dessert you can make at home. This recipe is from Guest Chef Ace Champion.
Imagine warm Café du Monde-style beignets topped with a mountain of delicate powdered sugar and rich French roast coffee, right in your own home. Recipe here.
Here’s a dessert fit for a king to carry around! Wrapped and shaped into a twist, this version of a King Cake Twists will have everyone eating out of your hands. Recipe here.
King Cake Cocktail
If you can’t make it to Bourbon Street, you can still enjoy a Mardi Gras themed cocktail from the historic Bourbon Orleans Hotel, set in the vibrant and lively French Quarter. Recipe courtesy of award-winning Bar Director Cheryl Charming.
1 ounce melon liqueur
4 ounces pineapple juice
1.5 ounces purple vodka (see note)
Pour melon liqueur into a Collins glass then fill with ice. Slowly pour the pineapple juice into the glass then top with the purple vodka. Garnish with a decorative baby.
Note: make purple vodka by adding drops of purple food coloring. Vodka can be substituted with any other clear spirit such as rum or tequila.
Remember to enjoy responsibly! If you find yourself lit brighter than the lights of Bourbon Street, use a designated driver or call a cab.