The Best Places to Catch Me This Weekend
Sooo, as much as I really do not like being on camera that is exactly where my new gig as the NOSH columnist for New Orleans Magazine has landed me. Check it out here if you are ready to learn to make Shrimp and Tasso Tacos inspired by Juan’s Flying Burrito. I will be doing this on IGTV every month, so send me some ideas if you have a recipe you want me to cover in the future. I am game for anything seasonal.
Chef Nathaniel Zimet recently added additional outdoor deck seating at Boucherie in the Carrollton neighborhood and the Tuesday – Saturday 5-7 p.m. Happy Hour looks sweet. Drink specials include $5 select house red and white wines, $1 off draft beer, and $7 Old Fashioneds and Sazeracs. The foods deals look amazing, too: $10 steamed mussels, $8 blacked shrimp with grit cake, $5 boudin balls, and $4 for an order of fries that arrives heaped with freshly shaved Parmesan Reggiano.
Some of my neighbors have created LaurelStreetMusic.com to bring porch and park concerts to my Uptown neighborhood. The concerts are free, but attendees are asked to donate to the cause by either dropping some dough in the musicians’ buckets, donating to them via Venmo or another cash app, or making a direct donation to Laurel Street Music. This Saturday, from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. Herlin Riley & Friends (featuring Erica Falls) will perform. The concert is happening at 6072 Laurel St. (right next to Patois restaurant). Patois will be selling cold beverages, but attendees are welcome to bring ice chests, too, so grab your chairs, dogs, kids, and friends and head over.
I have been lurking around, watching the signs go up at Mister Mao, a restaurant soon to open within walking distance of my house at the site of the former Dick & Jenny’s. Chef Sophina Uong (formerly of Rockrose) and husband William “Wildcat” Greenwell (formerly of the Elysian Bar) are promising a “fun, spunky, tropical roadhouse.” The duo has been popping up around town for months serving tropical small plates with a Cambodian vibe. Since patience is no virtue of mine, I am indulging in Chef Uong’s Manila Clams with Summer Stone Fruit Chaat this weekend. The chef explains, “This is a great Indian-inspired dish that’s perfect for antipasti on a hot summer evening. You can use any seasonal stone fruit (peaches and plums are my favorite) and the clams just speak to summertime.”
Yes, indeed. Join me?
Here is the recipe:
Manila Clam + Summer Stone Fruit Chaat
by Executive Chef/Owner Sophina Uong, Mister Mao
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/4 cup lime juice, divided
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 40 to 50 Manila clams, scrubbed, soaked in salt water, steamed, cooled, and strained, reserving 1/2 cup of the liquid
- Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 cups seasonal stone fruit (peaches, cherries, plums, etc.)
- 1/2 cup shaved radish
- 1/2 cup shaved celery
- 1/4 cup shaved red onion
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
- 1/4 cup mint leaves
- 1 Serrano pepper, sliced into thin rounds (remove any seeds)
- 2 tablespoons crushed Top Ramen, toasted in a pan with a little oil
- 2 tablespoons cornflakes (optional)
- 2 teaspoons chaat masala spice mix (Amazon or The International Market
- in Metairie)
- Mix the yogurt with the honey and half of the lime juice. Set aside.
- Make a vinaigrette by blending the remaining lime juice and olive oil together. Add the reserved 1/2 cup of strained clam juice. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl lightly mix the peaches (or other stone fruit), radish, celery, onion, cilantro, mint, and Serrano pepper. Toss with the reserved clam vinaigrette. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- To plate lay the chilled clams on a large platter. Top with the fruit mixture. Drizzle the yogurt-honey mixture over the fruit.
- Sprinkle the chaat spice and salt over everything. Garnish with cornflakes and crunchy toasted ramen. Eat with the clams with your fingers. Use the shells to scoop up all the peach-herb salad.
Tips from the chef:
-Soak the clams in salted water for 1 hour to purge them of sand.
-Canned mussels may be used.
-Change this to Mexican-style dish by omitting the yogurt and chaat spice, and substituting crushed corn tortillas, Doritos, or Corn Nuts.
Have a fun weekend, everyone. Y’all play nice.