Monday, October 27, 2008

    Food to Look Forward To

    It's late and I'm a tad hungry, so I had a few slices of pre-bed sharp cheddar cheese (it's one of the items on the oft-published list of things that are "OK" to eat if you're hungry before bed). Maybe a list of meals I'm looking forward to in the next month will also help quiet my noisy stomach. Or, it may lead to the need for more cheese...

    -Tomorrow morning, I'll wake up with my revered solitary cup of coffee at the kitchen table. I'll likely eat half a carton of low-fat cottage cheese, and a chocolate GNU bar. The fall sun streaming in the windows is so lovely this time of year.

    -My first order of BBQ shrimp at Pascal's Manale later this week with Jon and my Dad. They are said to be sautéed with a ton of butter, served swimming in even more, with garlic and pepper.

    -Central Grocery sandwiches thick with layers of meat, cheese, and the best olive salad you've never imagined, then powdery beignets with my Dad (no cafe au lait for him, he's never had a taste for coffee), and a walk and sit along the Mississippi. My maternal great-grandfather peddled his wares, some of which I have in my house here, up the river. When I gaze out at that dirty, historic body of constant water, I marvel that my Jersey-boy husband's job brought me to the region where half of my family began.

    -Attending our first New Orleans oyster roast next weekend. I'm on such an oyster kick! I went to many roasts while growing up in Charleston.

    -The freshest sushi at Hana; muddy local oysters at Casamento's; perspiring plastic cups of pina coladas as we dally along the river; much-longed for girl-bonding; and a lesson on making baba ghanoush when Alesa is in town. Maybe we should view Parker Posey's "Party Girl" at the same time, in homage to her character's crush on the falafel cart guy.

    -A date night with Jon that includes walking to our first meal at La Crepe Nanou, "go-cups" of peppery red wine in hand (each other's hand in the other, of course!). Maybe the Crêpe Ecrevisse (sautéed crawfish tails in lobster sauce served with potatoes) to start, and Crêpe Marrons (coffee ice cream, chestnut cream and rum flambé) to finish.

    -Appetizers and the view of St. Charles at The Columns, more oysters, a grand lunch at Commander's Palace, complete with
    25¢ martinis, and learning a slew of Shiritaki noodle dishes when Nicky's in town.

    -A BYOB bottle of red, or maybe bubbly, a huge charcuterie plate, and lots of guffaws, outside on the patio of St. James Cheese Company; her first po-boy, possibly at Johnny's; and a sampling of the best of the Bloody's (there are so damn many good Bloody Mary's to choose from in this city!) when Liz is in town.

    -Sunshine-filled meals of freshly caught fish needing little preparation, spicy conch chowder, spinach-like callaloo (it's been too many years since I've eaten it) and mouth-puckering, citric ceviche,
    on Jon's and my tropical Thanksgiving weekend second honeymoon.

    As I stretch off the couch and head to bed now, I'll pass through the kitchen and set the coffee maker's timer to put this list in motion as quickly as possible. Good Night!

    Photo by Shayne Leslie Figueroa; Rue de John Restaurant; February 29, 2008, the night before my wedding.