New Orleans – The Dinner

Nico and I finally made it to New Orleans, and we loved the city! The weekend we spent there, I think we saw at least 7 random parades, and at least three of those seemed to be private wedding parades. Music permeated the streets day and night and locals gathered around street corners with foldout chairs for impromptu concerts.

We went to Frenchman Street for beautiful jazz and wandered around Bourbon street to watch college kids embarrass themselves. The food was amazing! I love French food and was excited to see the culinary traditions mixed with brand new flavors. It felt like an invitation to make those kinds of decisions in my own kitchen.

We wanted to share the wonderful cuisine we experienced with our friends so last Friday night, Nico and I hosted 14 friends for dinner. Just like all of our dinners, it was divided into a first course, main course and dessert.

Below, you will find how I organized the dinner and a plan for how you can recreate it.

First Course 

Fried Okra with Homemade Aioli

Rabbit and Andouille Gumbo with Porcini Mushrooms

Crawfish Étouffée

Rosemary and Parmesan Buttermilk Biscuits and Buttermilk Cornbread

Main Course

Shrimp and Andouille Sausage Jambalaya

Sweet Potatoes with Pecans and Molasses Cream Sauce

Slow Braised Pork Shoulder with Apple Au Jus

Catfish Meunière with Capers

Lemon and Herb Fingerling Salad

Desserts

Beignets

Pecan Pie with Lemon Zest and Secret Chocolate Layer

How to make it happen at home!

2 days before:

Pork Shoulder, brine and refrigerate overnight

Rabbit and Andouille Gumbo, 2-3 hours

Pecan Pie

1 day before

6 pm Boil Potatoes (15 min), drain
Crawfish Étouffée
Put Pork Shoulder into over
7 pm Assemble cornbread
7:30 pm Bake Cornbread and Meat together
it is ok to bring the meat temperature up to 375 for 30 minutes
Finish Sauce for Pork
Assemble Potato Salad

Day of dinner

1 pm Start Jambalaya, place in oven
2 pm Prepare Biscuit dough, place on cookie sheet
Prep Beignet dough, cover
3 pm Bake Biscuits
3:15 pm Prepare Sweet Potatoes, make sauce
4 pm Bake Sweet Potatoes
Prepare Catfish
5 pm Prepare Aioli for Okra
5:30 pm Prepare Okra
Fry  Okra and Beignets right before serving.

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