Happy Mardi Gras!!

photo 2It’s Fat Tuesday! It’s time to get down Bay-Be! Well it’s been a weekend of getting down and if you’ve been in Louisiana it’s been a couple of weeks of the get down, get down! LOL! Now that Jax is old enough to understand, it’s time to start instilling a little Creole tradition in him…well the tradition has been there, maybe more of an understanding! Things get so commercialized and watered down now and the true meaning of the celebration seems to lose a piece of itself with every generation. I don’t know how lucky my kid is that his mom is a stickler for tradition and history, but as they say, we keep it real over here! LOL! He’s still young, but I want him to know what the celebration of Mardi Gras, Lundi Gras & The Zulu King really mean to his history. The creole culture is a culture that celebrates everything from life to death…which really is a celebration of life. It’s our way of thanking the lord. Mardi Gras is more than puking on Bourbon st. & flashing body parts for beads. In fact most native New Orleanians don’t event go down to Bourbon st.!

So then what is Mardi Gras, you ask? It’s a time of pure indulgence before the Lenten season! Basically get all photo 3the rich fatty yummy stuff in your belly before you pray all the bad stuff away and get ashes on your head! HAHA! It’s a bit like Carnival, but more of a melting pot…mainly because where it is, New Orleans which has always been a mecca of culture, cuisine and music. Yea I said, Mecca! Okay so I’m a bit bias…but once you get down there you cannot deny the vibrations! There is something epic and magical brewing underneath the soil. As someone who is a third generation Los Angeles Creole, I like to stay close to those roots! So, I decided to have my own Lundi Gras party with the family last night, since a lot of the adults have adult party plans for Mardi Gras. It was an opportunity to bring a little more history to Jax. I got the beads, the zydeco music, the food, the masks and family and we gathered at GG’s house!

photo 2I had planned on cooking, but my day was a bit overloaded with work and appointments yesterday, so I cheated with that a bit! Don’t laugh but, my GG went and got some Popeyes Chicken, Jambalaya, Red Beans & Rice & biscuits! Yes, sometimes you got to cut the time corners! My mom forgot to order or pick up a King Cake while she was in New Orleans last week, so I volunteered to make one…for the first time… EVER! Okay so lesson number one:

If you don’t normally bake…don’t bake something brand new on a time crunch for a special occasion

photo 4Yea…. my king cake was a BUST! But good looking out Cost Plus World Market for being the only place in Los Angeles who had the mix! They also had some Cafe Du Monde Beignet Mix and Coffee & Chicory (Cafe Du Monde or Community Coffee are both the best at Coffee & Chicory blends), Abita beer & Abita root beer, and Zapps chips! The only thing I was missing was some good ol’ pralines!!! My mom forgot to bring those home as well…….she is so fired from bringing home goodness from the mother ship!! Blah Blah…I was working…blah blah I was too busy eating Crab Cheesecake…LOL! Yea, mom’s fired! Okay, so back to yesterday. Baking King Cake, bad idea! First time making my beignets by myself…..well…the second batch was tasty! Popeyes Family Dinner? On point! Abita Mardi Gras brew? Hit the spot! Dancing in GG’s living room with Jax? Needed! Jax putting beads on everyone in the house? Super sweet! Jax dressing himself in most of the beads on the table, dancing his heart out, eating until I had to unbutton his top shirt, dubbing himself King of Mardi Gras before anyone ever arrived and then crashing hard in the spare bedroom all of a sudden…..PRICELESS!

It didn’t need to be elaborate or detailed. The house didn’t need to look like it barfed up Purple, Green & Gold and a baby wasn’t found! But something tells me that we will have our own piece of good luck and fun for the rest of the year anyway! We started it off just right with a little bit of this and little bit of that, fat bellies, pure laughs and lots of loves! Laissez Les Bons Temp Rouler BeBe…Let The Good Times Roll Bay-Be!

photo 1
The King of Mardi Gras