The key to a great Thanksgiving dinner isn't the main course, but the range of delicious sides. Long gone are the days of canned cranberry sauce and store-bought pies. If you're looking for a good complement to the traditional turkey or ham, Red Stick Spice Co. has an array of recipes on its blog, highlighting the staff's favorite sides. Among the recipes are Gramma Sue's mac and cheese, broccoli rice casserole, and sausage, artichoke and parmesan stuffing. Read the full story.
Christmas is right around the corner. If you're having trouble finding the perfect gift for that food and drink enthusiast, check out Maggie Heyn Richardson's suggestions in the latest issue of 225. To stock the home bar, Richardson recommends a few must-haves, including chalkboard wine glasses that allow you to write your name or the varietal on the glass, Studio C's reproduction beer opener and much more. Read the full story here. Richardson also offers up a selection of food-related gifts, which includes Helana Brigman's cookbook The Fresh Table and other stocking stuffers. Read the full story.
Jay Ducote's "Bite & Booze" radio show has been nominated as the best food or drink-based radio program in the country by The Taste Awards. You can vote for Ducote's show here. Taste Award winners will be announced Dec. 3, and winners will receive honors January 16, 2014. However, viewers choice voting ends Dec.18. For more information on the award and to see what Ducote has been up to, click here.
Last week, the USDA announced awards that support current efforts to connect school cafeterias with local farmers and ranchers through its Farm to School program. Baton Rouge's Fresh Beginnings program was among the grantees. Fresh Beginnings operates out of Mayor Kip Holden's Healthy City Initiative and will coordinate a Farm to School planning grant at four yet-to-be-announced public schools. Read the full story here.
Turkey is front and center this week, but you'll probably also need a dinner alternative that's fast, delicious and company-worthy. Salmon baked in parchment paper fits the bill. Pretty and tasty, it takes minutes to prepare and uses minimal ingredients. It also gives you a chance to incorporate fresh backyard herbs and tangy Louisiana citrus. Check out Maggie Heyn Richardson's latest post on her blog to get the recipe for this dish here.
A lunch buffet can be the best way to get the most bang for your midday buck, and few buffet options bring as much spice as the authentic Indian and Nepali fare at The Himalayas on Sherwood Forest Boulevard (Map it!). Assembling the perfect plate means entrees, sides and add-ons that round out the platter, and The Himalayas has plenty of choices for each. Pile on the basmati rice and take your pick from signature sides like navaratnam korma (mixed vegetables with creamy sauces), aalu cholay (chickpeas and potatoes) or vegetable pakora (mixed vegetables deep fried in a chickpea batter). It's the chicken tikka masala, though, that truly zings. Make sure to pick up plenty of naan to soak up the sweetly spicy sauce from the chicken, and get ready to make at least one trip to the buffet for seconds of the all-you-can-eat specialty. The buffet costs $7.95 Tuesday through Friday and $8.95 on weekends. Visit The Himalayas' website for more information or call 295-4490 to order.—Kaci Yoder
Corporate Boulevard can add another sushi and hibachi restaurant to its list of attractions. Kaminari, a restaurant serving all-you-can-eat sushi rolls and create-your-own hibachi plates, opened in the former location of Cici's Pizza about a month ago. The restaurant offers standard Asian fare such as entrees of shrimp fried rice, sesame chicken and orange chicken, as well as Pad Thai, shrimp and vegetable tempura and more. There is also a hibachi portion of the restaurant where guests can pick proteins and vegetables for a chef to prepare right in front of them. However, the restaurant's array of sushi options is its prime selling point. There are the regulars such as the California, tuna, avocado and cucumber rolls. Kaminari also features special rolls like the Black Dragon with shrimp tempura and cucumber topped with eel, eel sauce and avocado; the LSU roll with snow crab, crawfish and cream cheese; the Yam Yam Roll with white tuna, green onion and cream cheese; and more. The Corporate Boulevard location (Map it!) is Kaminari's second in the Capital City. The restaurant is open seven days a week, 11 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For more information, call 924-9088 or click here. —Matthew Sigur
Bayou Teche Brewing teams up with Remoulade Restaurant in New Orleans (Map it!) for a "B(Roux)" tasting event Tuesday, Dec. 3. Guests can enjoy five courses of Cajun cuisine, paired with some of Bayou Teche's best beers. The event kicks off with a reception at Remoulade at 6:30 p.m., and dinner begins at 7:30 p.m. The menu includes hors d'oeuvres of shrimp corndogs, boudin wontons and fried shrimp served with LA 31 Passionné; stuffed crabs served with LA 31 Bière Pâle; file gumbo served with Acadie; rabbit and tasso gumbo served with LA 31 Boucanée; and a dessert of Bûche de Noël served with LA 31 Bière Noir. The dinner is $30 per person. Space is limited. Call (504) 523-5433 to make your reservation.
In the PBS show, The Mind of a Chef, Chef Sean Brock takes a look at the influence of Louisiana cuisine. The episode features food writer John T. Edge taking Brock to Middendorf's Restaurant. There, Brock creates his version of the catfish chip and jambalaya. Chef Donald Link also appears in the episode to take Brock frogging. You can watch the entire episode here. For more information on "The Mind of a Chef," click here.
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Photos from the 2013 Voodoo Fest, November 1-3
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