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Snack on the go: Baton Rouge entrepreneur hopes 'Iconic' builds new genre

Photo provided by Be Well Nutrition Inc.Billy Bosch, a Baton Rouge native, markets the

A new protein drink now on the shelves in New Orleans could help establish an entirely new genre of beverage.
The Louisiana-born co-founder of the Iconic healthy “lifestyle beverage” promotes his product as a “snack drink.”
“It’s a whole new realm of drink, and one that we think is on the rise,” said Billy Bosch, a 31-year-old LSU alumnus.
Iconic is… Continue reading →

Fresh Ideas: Bake ‘beautiful bread’ at home with this no-knead method

Photo by Helana Brigman  --  Easy Ciabatta Bread requires only four ingredients.

Perhaps I’m a purist, but there is such a thing as fresh, beautiful bread. No, not the industrial loaves packaged in sleeves at your local supermarket, but real bread with deeper flavors and crispier textures. Part dense and part light, good bread conceals its fluffy white insides beneath a golden sturdy crust. Slice into… Continue reading →

Gourmet Galley: Add deboned chicken thighs, spinach for a hearty mac and cheese main dish

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- For a hearty main dish, add chicken and spinach to macroni and cheese.

Macaroni and cheese has been in the limelight for the past year or so. Yes, it’s everything from the granny-type casserole of yellow cheese (or a cheesy product) to exotic cheese blends melted and folded into cooked macaroni. How it’s served determines where it fits in the menu. I’ve seen mac-and-cheese balls for appetizers, mac-and-cheese cakes as… Continue reading →

Children with cancer also face difficulties with food

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Natalie Porta is the pediatric clinical dietitian nutritionist at Our Lady of The Lake Children's Hospital. The drinks are nutritional supplemental shakes for patients.

Feeding growing bodies is tricky enough for most parents, but for parents whose children are undergoing cancer treatment, getting them to eat enough to keep up strength and energy to face a normal day is the ultimate challenge. According to Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital Pediatric Dietitian Nutritionist Natalie Porta, children undergoing cancer treatment can… Continue reading →

What’s Happening for Oct. 16, 2014

Red Stick Farmers Markets reopen for fall In addition to the Red Stick Farmers Market’s two year-round locations, its five seasonal Baton Rouge-area locations are now open for the fall season, a spokeswoman said. The year-round locations are open from 8 a.m. to noon on Thursdays at 6400 Perkins Road behind Pennington Biomedical Research… Continue reading →

Side Dish: Foolproof muffins are this easy

I can’t pass up a new cookbook by Jean Anderson. With her background in food chemistry, I know the book will include plenty of useful information and its recipes will always work. Her latest cookbook is no exception. Anderson has had lots of experience baking muffins, the subject of her latest book. She was only about 4 years old… Continue reading →

Bites of History: Cooks didn’t always have handy appliances; Guess what these utensils did ...

Photo by Cynthia L. Nobles  --  Braised Beef Short Ribs With Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes is seasoned with freshly ground whole peppercorns, which in past centuries would have been stored in a spice box.

Even though our modern kitchens are full of appliances that slice, fry, broil, stir, beat and grind, we still often complain there isn’t enough time to cobble together a meal. But imagine being transported back to a time when there wasn’t such a thing as an electric mixer or even a stove and you had to get… Continue reading →

Think beyond Thanksgiving pies with canned pumpkin

Associated Press photo by Matthew Mead -- Pumpkin puree's rich flavor and creamy sweetness work great in both sweet and savory dishes.

Let’s talk about one of the season’s most iconic vegetables — canned pumpkin. Yes, canned, because that’s how 99 percent of us get our pumpkin. Which is fine except for one thing — Americans overwhelmingly associate canned pumpkin with just one dish (pumpkin pie) and one day of the year (Thanksgiving). But canned pumpkin actually has all… Continue reading →

Eat Your Vegetables: Au Gratin ‘delicious’ with grilled chicken

Advocate file photo  --  Squash au Gratin

The Advocate’s food staff featured this simple and tasty squash dish in the 1999 Food Focus Encore booklet “New Century Celebrations.” Use the recipe now but keep it handy because it’s a good one to serve during the holidays, which are just around the corner. A small square of this is delicious with grilled chicken or fish.… Continue reading →

What’s Happening for Oct. 9, 2014

Sandra Roberts, national sales director for Plumpjack, Cade and Odette Wineries and an LSU graduate, will be a special guest at the Oct. 22 Plumpjack-Cade wine dinner at Juban’s Restaurant, 3739 Perkins Road, Baton Rouge. An hors d’oeuvre reception will begin at 6:30 p.m. followed by… Continue reading →

Gourmet Galley: Soup for all ages

Advocate file photo  --  Chicken Tortilla Soup

All I need is a cool snap to get a pot soup on the stove. This Chicken Tortilla Soup is easy to put together and one my family likes. It’s a semihomemade recipe using cooked chicken, canned and frozen vegetables, along with sautéed fresh vegetables. This is a soup all ages enjoy. Pass separate bowls of avocado… Continue reading →

Cochon D’Play Smoke team takes title

Photo provided by David Fontenot --  Members of the Cochon D'Play Smoker team, from left, Bryan Fontenot, Elizabeth Grace Fontenot, Arlin Fontenot, David Fontenot and Wesley Fontenot, show off their prizes after being named the overall winners of the first St. Aloysius Catholic church 'Holy Smoke!' barbecue competition on Saturday, Oct. 4. The team also took first place in the Wild Card category and second in the Pork Shoulder category.

The first “Holy Smoke!” barbecue competition at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Baton Rouge attracted 20 teams who vied for bragging rights in four categories: Ribs, Brisket, Pork Shoulder and Wild Card. Taking top prize as overall winner in the Oct. 4 event was the Cochon D’Play Smoker team of Bryan Fontenot, Arlin Fontenot, David Fontenot, Wesley… Continue reading →

Nutrition guidelines for cancer patients can help with treatment side effects

Photo by Colette Dean  --  Colorful Broccoli, Bacon and Grape Salad With Quinoa is a high-protein variation of the popular sweet and sour broccoli salad.

When undergoing treatment for cancer, nutrition has never been more important. While your body is waging war with cancer cells, appetites can suffer and fatigue can make it hard to muster energy to prepare meals. With help from a trio of experts from Woman’s Hospital — registered dietitian Brooke Schoonenberg, chief clinical dietitian Paula Meeks, and oncology… Continue reading →

Side Dish: Diets and accepting cookies

Photo by Cheramie Sonnier  --  Katherine Anders' Oatmeal Spice Cookies With Cinnamon and Nutmeg

After spending four days at the Association of Food Journalists conference in Memphis, Tennessee, and then munching my way through Kentucky and Alabama for another week, I came home with the intention of avoiding anything with sugar, flour or an abundance of butter in it. Not an easy endeavor when you live in south Louisiana and write about… Continue reading →

Memphis cuisine: Barbecue and a whole lot more

Photo by Cheramie Sonnier  --  For a healthful vegetarian Southern lunch, chefs Feliciana Suzanne Willett, Miles McMath and Ernest Dixon, along with blogger and cookbook author Justin Fox Burks, offer a Study of Corn, left, with Inner City Succotash, Cracked Corn Grits and Crispy Late Tomato, and, at right, Charred Mushroom Tamales with Bonnie Blue Goat Cheese Crema and Smoked Sweet Corn. The dishes were served at Feliciana Suzanne's Restaurant in downtown Memphis, Tennessee, for an Association of Food Journalists luncheon.

Memphis, Tennessee isn’t just barbecue and fried chicken anymore. Today, it honors its traditional food culture while embracing multiethnic cooking, vegetarianism, locally sourced foods and white tablecloth dining. There are still plenty of local pitmasters offering visitors their take on barbecue, including barbecue pizza, the local dish known as barbecued spaghetti, and barbecued Cornish game hens… Continue reading →

Chef makes a case for modern omakase dining at Shogun in Metairie

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ -- Seared yellowtail belly, an exmaple of the contemporary sushi at Shogun in Metairie

Some culinary pyrotechnics are always part of the hibachi restaurant experience, and Shogun in Metairie puts on the usual performance at its griddle-top group tables. These days, however, the real fireworks at this sprawling suburban Japanese restaurant take flight at the sushi bar, specifically the corner that is the roost of the sushi chef everyone calls… Continue reading →

Fresh Ideas: No apple today; take pears to the next level

Photo by Helana Brigman  --  For a pretty fall treat, make Candy Pears dipped in dark chocolate and coated with chopped nuts.

Every grown woman has that one treat she just can’t say “no” to. For me, it’s candied apples; I just love them. With their crunchy, chocolate-covered exterior and their crispy, sweet apple insides, candied apples invoke my favorite fall flavors. And, they’re fun to eat! This recipe for Candy Pears was born out of my love… Continue reading →

Shake the Salt Habit

Photo provided by American Heart Association  --  Cheesecake Dainties feature won ton wrappers sprinkled with crushed graham cracker to create minibaskets for the cheesecake-style filling

Put down that salt shaker and check the amount of sodium in the prepared foods you buy. That’s the message the American Heart Association is promoting during National No Salt Week, which begins Friday and runs through Oct. 10. “The goal for No Salt Week is to ask people to remove the salt shakers from… Continue reading →

Leaning on the muffuletta: Metairie’s Linda Jumonville lands in national cooking contest with her low-fat take on N.O. classic

Photo provided by Pillsbury  --  Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest finalist Linda Jumonville, of Metairie, hopes to wow judges with her Open-Face Italian Turkey Sandwiches, which she describes as a leaner version of the muffuletta.

Lucky recipients of New Orleans native Linda Jumonville’s cooking don’t believe her when she tells them what a terrible cook she was when she married in 1968. Jumonville, who will be among the 100 contestants participating in the 47th Pillsbury Bake-Off on Nov. 3 in Nashville, Tennessee, for the $1 million grand prize, said… Continue reading →

Side Dish: Cookbook has plenty to chew on

HHH “The Chew: A Year of Celebrations” edited by Ashley Archer and Jessica Dorfman Jones Kingswell, $19.99 255-page paperback Fans of the television lifestyle show “The Chew” will welcome the latest cookbook from its five hosts — Mario Batali, Michael Symon, Carla Hall, Clinton Kelly and Daphne Oz. “The Chew: A Year of Celebrations” includes recipes from each host, along with… Continue reading →

What’s Happening, Oct. 2, 2014

Whole Foods Markets will host sea-to-table tastings during Thursdays in October during which guests can tour each store’s seafood department, sample fresh Gulf seafood, taste wine pairings and learn ways to prepare seafood. Tickets are $25 per person. Sales benefit the Audubon Nature Institute Gulf United for… Continue reading →

Farmer Nick Usner keeps his hands 'in the dirt'

Photo by Jyl Benson  --  Nick Usner starts the day before dawn harvesting okra grown in his fields at Grow Farm in St. Tammany Parish.

Nick Usner’s father was an organic pig farmer who suffered a fatal heart attack while jogging at age 44 when his son was just 13. Though his time with his son was cut short, the impact of Thomas Usner’s long days “in the dirt” with his son was profound.… Continue reading →

Eat Your Vegetables: Faith fundraiser something to give a fig about

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- Stuffing mix adds unique flavor to easy-to-make Scalloped Eggplant.

Martha Simmons and I were both University of Southwestern Louisiana (now University of Louisiana at Lafayette) home economics graduates, and our paths continue to cross when it comes to food. She recently sent me a copy of “Cooking Up a Legacy of Faith” by the St. John’s Rosary Altar Society in Zachary. The Altar Society… Continue reading →

Side Dish: Gluten-free cookbook can serve whole family

Have someone in your family who needs to be on a gluten-free diet — and have young children, too? Then the cookbook for you is “Gluten-Free Family Favorites: The 75 Go-To Recipes You Need to Feed Kids and Adults All Day, Every Day.” The book by Kelli and Peter Bronski features home-style, easy-to-follow recipes that will appeal… Continue reading →

Gourmet Galley: Breakfast casseroles can save the postgame day

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- Gourmet Galley, French Toast Casserole

From now until the first of the year, schedules will be more hectic. The excitement of games on Friday and Saturday nights is talked about all week. A big part of the planning must center around company and meals, and the more that can be done ahead, the better. I like the planning and the decorating, but… Continue reading →

Louisiana Craft Brewers Week spotlights home-grown beer businesses

Advocate staff photo by SCOTT THRELKELD -- Brewer Jamie Agness checks the progress of fermentation of a beer sample last year at the Abita Brewing Co. in Abita Springs.

Louisianians not only know how to recognize good beer, they also know how to craft it. During the second annual Louisiana Craft Brewers Week running Monday-Saturday, Sept. 28, the state’s 11 breweries will work with their distributors and retailers to host events, debut specialty beers and allow the public to meet the owners and brewers.… Continue reading →

Cha-cha-cha-chia: More Americans filling up with nutritious seeds

Associated Press photo by Matthew Mead -- A tablespoon of tiny chia sees crams tons of protein, fiber, healthy fats, calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorus and omega fatty acids into a Strawberry-Banana-Chia Breakfast Smoothie.

Pity the chia seed. For so long, this nutritional powerhouse was relegated to late-night television commercials hawking sprouting cat-shaped clay planters. That is, until recently. Americans have suddenly realized chia seeds have a lot to offer a healthy diet. A tablespoon of tiny chia seeds crams in tons of protein, fiber, healthy fats, calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorus… Continue reading →

What a Crock!: Yogurt made at home

Photo by Beth Colvin  --  Make your own Home-style Yogurt in the VitaClay yogurt maker and personal slow cooker.

The yogurt craze has hit the slow cooking market by way of a new product, the VitaClay yogurt maker and personal slow cooker. While I had heard of people using their slow cookers to make yogurt, many of the techniques did not seem food safe. The new slow cooker/yogurt maker seeks to change that with more temperature… Continue reading →

For a good year: Begin the High Holy Days with sweetness of Rosh Hashana dishes

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- Carrot Tzimmes, or Honeyed Carrots, are traditional for  Rosh Hashana.

At sundown on Wednesday, Sept. 24, Jews around the world will celebrate Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, but not with Champagne and fireworks. It is a time for reflection and prayer. And, of course, food. Rosh Hashana begins the High Holy Days — 10 days of contemplation and repentance that end with Yom Kippur, the… Continue reading →

Bread makes the meal

If you haven’t yet checked out Forte Grove Bakery of Plaquemine, you should. This treasure makes artisanal breads at an affordable price. From French country loaves to challah and brioche, Forte Grove offers a wide range of options for your shopping list. The bakery sells its products each Saturday at the Red Stick Farmers Market in downtown… Continue reading →

Gourmet Galley: Good stuffing: Fill hens or chickens with tasty dressing

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- Use the recipe for Stuffed Cornish Hens to make 'chicken packets' with either deboned chicken thighs or half of a Cornish hen.

This recipe for Stuffed Cornish Hens (or Stuffed De-boned Chicken Thighs) is one I adapted from a Cornish hen recipe in “Louisiana Legacy,” published by the Thibodaux Service League, Inc. I think all of us have gone to serving smaller portions then a whole Cornish hen. I split the hens in half. I place one half over… Continue reading →