This second part of my NOLA TEAtime is all about eating. Here are all the new foods and places we tried on our family vacation. Between parts 1 and 2, you should find a food option for even the pickiest of eaters.
Beignets at Cafe Beignet and Cafe Du Monde
I think we lived at Cafe Beignet when we weren’t at the Windsor Court. We ate beignets EVERY SINGLE DAY while we were in New Orleans. We struggled to keep it to once a day. We all loved beignets, but for very different reasons. As I mentioned in part 1, my mom, brother, and I all have different tastes. My brother and I loved beignets because they were hot, pillowy sugary goodness.
I also loved them because I thought they reminded me of funnel cakes. However, I recently had a funnel cake since trying beignets and beignets are actually better. The beignet dough had a more distinct flavor and sweetness. If you’ve never had a beignet, but you have had a funnel cake, it’s still a good point of reference. I think it would be safe to say if you like one, you’ll enjoy the other.
My mom loved beignets because she thought they tasted like a sweet version of a Guyanese bake. I didn’t include bake and saltfish in my 10 Things to Eat in Guyana and Suriname TEAtime, but it’s definitely something you should try if you have the opportunity to get your hands on some. While bakes are savory and circular, and beignets are sweet and rectangular, their textures are quite similar, and in both cases, you fry the batters. If you shake off all the excess powdered sugar from a beignet like my mom did, it’s not hard to make a connection between bakes and beignets.
If you try nothing else when you visit New Orleans, make sure you try beignets!
Grits and Omelettes, at Cafe Beignet
I don’t like grits. On to the omelets. I had the crawfish omelet, which was really good. The eggs and the crawfish were well seasoned. It was a nice thick omelet, and it wasn’t too wet or greasy. I’m not sure if others have experienced this, but sometimes when I get omelets from a place like Denny’s, the omelet is floating in oil or moisture. Depending on what’s inside the omelet, I can understand why this happens. For example, mushrooms are very watery, so if there are mushrooms in an omelet, I find there’s always more liquid on my plate. And that’s fine. But! None of this mattered at Cafe Beignet cause the omelets weren’t like that.
Muffuletta, at Cafe Du Monde
The muffuletta is apparently the official sandwich of New Orleans. I didn’t know about it before the trip, but Drew, our tour guide from the Haunted Bar Crawl, recommended trying it. He also recommended getting the bread toasted. We tried the muffuletta but forgot to get it toasted. It’s a great sandwich. And I can say I’ve had it, though I didn’t think it was anything mindblowing. (Not like the beignets.) The sandwich is made up of Italian bread, cured meats, cheese, and olives (in some form). It reminded me of the Italian BMT from Subway. I usually get sweet onion sauce and jalapenos on my BMTs, and I imagine if I could’ve similarly customized the muffuletta, I would’ve loved it more.
Oceana Grill and Bar
We went to Oceana Grill and Bar for some gator, catfish, and cajun fries. We all liked the seasoning and breading on the gator and the catfish. It’s wasn’t too salty, and it didn’t overpower the gator or catfish. You get a nice big serving of food here for reasonable prices. I couldn’t even finish all of my order, but my brother helped me out, and my mom helped him with his order. The alcoholic drinks here are also really cool. I don’t remember what I ordered, but it was blue, and it came out smoking, probably from dry ice.
The only things I didn’t get to try in New Orleans were oysters and something “blackened”. Next time! If you have any recommendations for my next trip to NOLA, leave them in the comments below. And if you plan to try beignets on your trip, let me know.