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Foods of Louisiana

One of the reasons for having such a bountiful menu in Louisiana is the bounty itself. Seafood, wild game and rice are some of the staples that make us a land (okay, "State") of plenty. We can grow or harvest from nature most anything we need to tickle our tongues. Our diverse backgrounds bring the bounty together in ways that astound the pallet. Louisiana cooking brings a whole different meaning to the word "flavor"!

Seafood, for one, is as fresh as it can be had! Shrimp, crabs, crawfish, oysters, frog legs, alligator, speckled trout, redfish, black drum, red snapper, grouper, flounder, catfish, bass, perch, sac-a-lait....and on, and on...! All within close reach.

Wild Game is out the back door (or close by). Deer, rabbit, wild hog, squirrel, raccoon, ducks, quail, doves, ... and so on...(I'm gettin' hungry!)

Rice grown here goes with all of the above, and in addition, we grow peas, beans, tomatoes, eggplant, cucumber, beets, turnips, mustard, collards, cabbage, potatoes, okra, butter beans, corn, etc. 

Seasonings that take their spot in the garden include bell pepper, hot peppers, green onions, parsley and basil to name a few, and, we produce our own salt and sugar!

Oh, let's not forget the cattle, hogs and chickens....  and we're eyeing up nutria (marsh rats) real close. 

We do import a few things but if the borders get closed we're just fine. Yea, we got our own refineries for oil products and we produce our own natural gas too (to fire up the stoves!). 

So what are we missing? All we need now is Pots, Pans and People, and we make that happen "just naturally". I guess that's why we have so many festivals here huh? I'm surprised we don't have a "Tablespoon Festival"!

I guess if you can't put it together with all of that you just ain't tryin' real hard. Okay, I'm finished braggin'!

My point in all of this is that much of this great bounty has been here for many years, some imported and some native to the land. The people of Louisiana have learned to master the flavors of our vast array of foods. We use what is in hand and "make do". The different cultures that have made Louisiana their home over the years have shared their cooking "know how" and the result is nothing but good. (now I'm really hungry!)

Even through the tough times we can, and have in the past, muster up what we need to survive and make it taste good. 

So when you see the dishes of Louisiana just remember "it all lies here within reach". (Makes you want to pack your stuff and move here huh?)

I would fail my heritage not to mention that along with the great cooking follows a people who love to share what they have. Giving is a way of life in South Louisiana and is "expected" amongst ourselves. If you love to eat, we love to cook for you! Come to Louisiana and see what I mean!

Happy Cooking.....

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