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New Orleans Cookbook Recommendations

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What is the best New Orleans cookbook you know of? I'm particularly interested in books that go into the cultural history of the cusine. One of your recommendations is going to make a great gift for someone. Thanks folks.

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  1. Chortle, Paul Prudomme's "Louisiana Kitchen", no contest. It's not only one terrific cookbook, it's my "go to" cookbook for anytime I want to make a great meal. Steeped in Paul's family history, this is Cajun and Creole cooking as it's meant to be. And don't be deterred by the ingredients, butter is one of the four essential food groups. (Or so it seems.) Absolutely a wonderful food and cooking resource.

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    1. re: Leper

      Also the Plantation Cookbook, put out by the Junior League of NOLA.

    2. Another really good cookbook (especially for music lovers) is Creole Gumbo and All That Jazz: A New Orleans Seafood Cookbook by Howard Mitcham.

      Here's a link to amazon.com info:

      Link: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/...

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        Hungry Celeste

        The single best New Orleans cookbook (and I think I own 'em all, good, bad & indifferent) is the Picayune's Creole Cookbook. First published ages ago, the daily newspaper reissued it a couple of times and the most recent update & reprint is a gem. Has all of the standards & classics from both the restaurant & home cooking repertoires. Others have mentioned Prudhomme's cookbooks (they're all good), but I think they're more pan-Louisiana/acadian rather than "New Orleans". If you can get your hands on "Recipes & Remembrances of New Orleans" published by the parents' club at Ursuline Academy, buy it (hard to find). A favorite of mine is Leon Soniat's "La Bouche Creole", which contains his personal anecdotes about growing up in pre-war New Orleans. His shrimp creole & redfish courtbouillion recipes are my personal gold standards for both dishes. Richard & Rima Collin's New Orleans Cookbook is another really, really good one. Their recipes are clearly written, easy to follow.

        Several of the old guard restaurants published their own cookbooks: Commander's, Galatoire's, Brennan's, Uglesich. They're good if you're a fan of a particular place, but I find most of them too narrow & restaurant-style to really use often.

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        1. re: Hungry Celeste

          Anybody have Warren Laruth's "Front Room - Back Room" a small cookbook written by the great.

        2. I appreciate your help and I thank you for taking time to post.

          1. About 50 years ago, I picked up a cookbook with traditional N.O. recipes...I think it was the "River Road Cookbook". I may even still have it, but finding cookbooks ain't easy around here. You might check Amazon.com.