|The Church of the Immaculate Conception in New Orleans|
Ash Wednesday marks an important milestone in the Catholic liturgical year, the gatepost, if you will, to a forty-day season of spiritual cleansing in preparation for Christ's resurrection. Even if you aren't Catholic, Christian, or even religious, a semi-prolonged period of sacrifice and mental inventory of one's ethical values constitutes worthwhile philosophical endeavor. Only the culturally unaware would miss that Catholic roots run deep in New Orleans, and by extension, that Lenten offerings for New Orleanians often involve forsaking some aspect of food or drink.
The Poor Boy sandwich occupies an iconic place in the culinary landscape of the Crescent City, and it appears on menus in manifestations that range from the sublime to the ridiculous. Yet for all these iterations, I cannot remember ever seeing an establishment offering a vegetarian poor boy sandwich. (And a shrimp or oyster poor boy disqualifies as vegetarian!) Below is my interpretation.
Part Fresh, Part Global.
The ingredients found in this sandwich have a Mediterranean flair, but they ride to glory on a New Orleans staple, the poor boy loaf.
|Ingredients (and immersion blender!) for hummus|
|Pan toast the poor boy loaf with some butter. Delicious all on its own!|
People always complain about the difficulty of finding fresh avocados. It really isn't that difficult except that you need to plan a few days in advance. These avocados were as hard as baseballs last Saturday - and that is they way you want to buy them. Allowing this fruit to ripen in a grocer's bin is generally a bad idea, so you have to take control of the process. Place your hard, green avocado in a brown paper bag and crumple the top closed. Leave this bag on your counter for a few days so the natural ripening process might take place in an even and controlled way. (This is exactly how you ripen those hard peaches or pears!) Here, four days later, we have picture-perfect avocados!