Happy Mardi Gras!
Earlier in the day, I thought about hiding a plastic baby in the scones, but when it came time to make them I forgot. Such is life. They were great with whipped cream and the first organic strawberries of the year. Thought I might as well live it up since I've sworn off carbs for Lent.
When we were first married, we lived in St. Tammany Parish, Lousiana. It's across Lake Pontchartrain from New Orleans. Good times. Good friends. Good food. No kidding.
There are three Mardi Gras (how do you make that plural?) that I have specific memories of. Don't know what happened to the other two. Lost in the fog of years, I guess.
We only went to the big city once for Mardi Gras, and the most I can say for it is that I was glad to get out of there in one piece. The crush of the crowds was scary and one of the girls with us had her purse stolen right in the middle of it. Trust me, I LOVE New Orleans, but I have no desire to go back to the French Quarter for Mardi Gras. Once was enough.
Another time, we rode in a Mardi Gras boat parade. The parade was in Madisonville, but we rode over in a sailboat from Mandeville. Have I mentioned my tendency to suffer motion sickness? Throw in a little alcohol and you've got trouble. All I remember is wanting OFF that boat in the middle of Lake Pontchartrain. But then we got to Madisonville, and all was well. Best gumbo in the world came from a restaurant there. I'm salivating just thinking about it.
My favorite Mardi Gras memory is the small town celebration. One year we hit the parades in both Covington and Folsom (we lived between them). Or maybe it was different years. That would fill in one of the missing years. Anyway, in Covington everyone would cheer and yell for beads, then run around the corner and do it again and again as the parade snaked through town.
Folsom only had one major road, which was the highway, and they just shut it down for a few hours. The parade wasn't terribly impressive but, heck, it was a great excuse to hang around in lawn chairs drinking beer and eating BBQ shrimp. Low key and stress-free. And we were young. This year we spent Mardi Gras at the chemo center. All those years ago, we never would've dreamed such a thing. But hey, it could be worse. They even had decorations. Let the good times roll!
The other Tuesday With Dorie bakers are here. And if you'd like to see a video of the original Baking With Julia show, you can find it here.
Here's a shoe: