Holiday Traditions, New and Old

It’s that time of year again!

Time for delicious holiday foodstuffs? Nope. Time for incessantly repeating carols on retail PA systems? Nope. Time to panic? Maybe.

My friend Lori Luza just posted her Annual Holiday Pre-Rant (http://texasbluelime NULL.com/wp/2011/11/16/annual-holiday-pre-rant/). This is not the kind of thing people look forward to, is it? I mean, there’s probably something wrong with me. However, I have to say that I’m relieved that I’m not alone. I used to think very few people “got it” around the holidays.  Lori not only re-emphasizes that we really don’t need to hear “Little Drummer Boy” 187 times in the grocery store before Christmas, but that maybe a few of us have different priorities this year.

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I Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans

The former residence of Anne Rice, outside of which my friend Jason and I would drunkenly lament our own unpublished states.

A well-known residence in the Garden District.

Let me begin by stating that I currently reside in Austin, Texas, which is a pretty cool place. I have nothing against it. I’m not “doing it wrong.” I’m just not as in love with Austin as I am with New Orleans.

I was […]

The Killing Floor

(http://www NULL.amazon NULL.com/Killing-Floor-Pc/dp/B002IYR0KO%3FSubscriptionId%3DAKIAJEQD5TKKEYDMJSTA%26tag%3Dblogferret-20%26linkCode%3Dxm2%26camp%3D2025%26creative%3D165953%26creativeASIN%3DB002IYR0KO)Naw, I’m not gonna talk about this PC game, even though I heard it was good for some Co-Op Zombie killing fun of an evening. I just liked the title.

When I lived in New Orleans in 1996, I worked at a place in the 200 block of Baronne Street downtown. It was in a bank building. We worked on the ground floor, but we supported some clients on the upper floors of the building. For some reason, when you called the elevator to go down, it would stop even if it was on its way up. If you got in one that had the “up” light on, you would first have to go up, then down to your destination floor.  This was true even if someone below you had used the elevator to ascend, and then left it.  So the elevator doors would open into an empty elevator, and you’d get in, and although you pressed a button for the lobby, the elevator would still go to the top floor, open, and then close and take you back down. Even if no one on the top floor had called it, which was usually the case. I don’t know why the elevator behaved this way and didn’t know why then.

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The Picayune's Creole Cookbook

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Today we did some errands and, as usual, couldn’t stop ourselves from visiting Half Price Books. I was so pleased to pick up an actual treasure: The (http://www NULL.amazon NULL.com/Picayunes-Creole-Cook-Book-Sesquicentennial/dp/B000I0PL7Y%3FSubscriptionId%3DAKIAJEQD5TKKEYDMJSTA%26tag%3Dblogferret-20%26linkCode%3Dxm2%26camp%3D2025%26creative%3D165953%26creativeASIN%3DB000I0PL7Y) Picayune’s Creole Cook Book – Sesquicentennial Edition (http://www NULL.amazon NULL.com/Picayunes-Creole-Cook-Book-Sesquicentennial/dp/B000I0PL7Y%3FSubscriptionId%3DAKIAJEQD5TKKEYDMJSTA%26tag%3Dblogferret-20%26linkCode%3Dxm2%26camp%3D2025%26creative%3D165953%26creativeASIN%3DB000I0PL7Y)! It contains 150 years worth of recipes compiles from The Times Picayune (http://www NULL.timespicayune NULL.com/), the New Orleans daily newspaper. The Picayune itself is somewhat sentimental (http://www NULL.amazon NULL.com/Picayunes-Creole-Cook-Book-Sesquicentennial/dp/B000I0PL7Y%3FSubscriptionId%3DAKIAJEQD5TKKEYDMJSTA%26tag%3Dblogferret-20%26linkCode%3Dxm2%26camp%3D2025%26creative%3D165953%26creativeASIN%3DB000I0PL7Y) for me, in part because my grandfather always said it phonetically to make us giggle when we went to visit. Also, a lot of my mom’s own recipe clippings come from the Picayune, and, miraculously, the paper has two pages of comics on weekdays! Weekdays! Can you believe it?

This isn’t the newer version, printed in 2002, with the pretty cover. The hardback of that edition seems not to be available now for less than a C-note,  but I’ll settle for the more “homey” version from 1987.  It is a reprint of the second edition of the Picayune Cookbook from 1901, which is considered the definitive collection.  This edition was edited by Marcelle Bienvenu, of St. Martinville, LA. She worked for the Brennan’s family of restaurants, as well as opening her own restaurant, Chez Marcelle.

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King Cake Bonanza is ON!

UPDATE: If it isn’t obvious, Carnival Season is over. It’s now Lent, so you should be depriving yourself. Try again next year!

Okay, I am now able to offer Homemade Authentic King Cakes to those of you living out of the Austin Area! If you are in Austin, of course, I can deliver one […]

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