> Bless Their Hearts Mom: Recipe Weekend: Cookbook Review: Fun, Funky and Fabulous New Orleans Casual Restaurant Recipes by Jyl Benson
Friday, February 6, 2015

Recipe Weekend: Cookbook Review: Fun, Funky and Fabulous New Orleans Casual Restaurant Recipes by Jyl Benson

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book, free of charge, from pelican Publishing, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

Fun, Funky and Fabulous New Orleans Casual Restaurant Recipes cover


“The best thing about the cuisine of New Orleans is that it is alive. And because it is alive, it is always changing. . . . And the exciting consequence of our willingness to change is that our cuisine remains fresh and reflective of our present. Our food always was and it remains, fun, funky, and fabulous, not to mention delicious, inventive, and unique. . . . [This] book would make a handy guide to local neighborhoods and where to eat in each of them, besides being a great cookbook full of recipes that can actually be made in the home kitchen.”
—From the introduction by Liz Williams, executive director and
a founder of the Southern Food and Beverage Museum

Filled with folksy art and creative recipes from affordable restaurants captured in tantalizing photographs—with tidbits of history thrown in as lagniappe—author Jyl Benson serves up just the right taste of this fascinating and ever-evolving city. Included are neighborhood favorites such as MoPho, Purtoo, Toup’s Meatery, Lola, Bhava, and Juan’s Flying Burrito: A Creole Taqueria.

sam hardeveld illustration from Fun Funky and Fabulous New Orleans Casual Restaurants


LOVE love love this book! It has all the great new restaurants that we love, that are so unique and integral to our neighborhoods. The recipes range from super simple (Louisiana Pecan Praline Bites)
to traditional time involved (like Crawfish Beignets ), to needing extra time, but oh so worth it (like Andouille Tots with Ranch Dipping Sauce, shown on the cover. The book covers Starters (appetizers), Land and Air (Meat), Sea (Seafood and fish) and Sweet (desserts), plus Lagniappe- like Pretzel Bread, Short Rib Marinade and MpPho's Mayo! The pictures will have you saliviating over EVERY page, and wanting to hit the kitchen asap! The recipes are very straightforward, and even a beginner cook can follow along with them! The adorable illustrations from Sam (such as above) start each section and are so wonderfully appropriate, that you may find yourself wanting to frame them for your kitchen!. Benson has down MOLA proud with this collection of unique and evolving traditional recipes, that will leave any lover of Louisiana food very happy indeed. It also makes a great Valentine's Day gift for the foodie or cookbook lover on your list!

And now for one of our favorite recipes from a local restaurant we LOVE, Lola in Covington, LA!

While it's not native to Louisiana, so many of the NOLA area mom and pop restaurants have made it a staple on their menus,, and I had to share it with you, as it's perfect for winter days!

Fun, Funky and Fabulous New Orleans Casual Restaurant Recipes ooey gooey cake

Ooey Gooey Cake Recipe:

About the Author:

Jyl Benson began her editorial career with the New Orleans Times-Picayune and served as a regional reporter for both the New York Times and Time magazine. A native New Orleanian and passionate home cook since childhood, she serves as curator of community affairs for the Southern Food and Beverage Institute, as food and dining editor for Avenue magazine, and as a roving reporter for the radio show Louisiana Eats!

About the Photographer:

Originally from London, resident New Orleans photographer Sam Hanna began his career in Detroit. He specializes in culinary styling and photography from his studio, Hanna Foto.

About the Illustrator:

Simon Hardeveld, simply known as “Simon of New Orleans,” is a folk artist originally from France. He is best known for his colorful signs found all over the city, and the works created for this book are based on his iconic style. He and his wife live in the Irish Channel of New Orleans.

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