Category Archives: Travel

Beignets of New Orleans from Cafe du Monde

The French brought two amazing food contributions to New Orleans and is definitely known well at the french quarters : Beignets and Coffee mixed with chicory.  And if you want to get a feel for it, Visit the world famous Café du Monde. That’s the first place everybody in new orleans will recommend you to visit in French quarters – we started hearing the name from the time we decided to visit the city of new orleans – We even got that as the first tip while check-in at the hotel.

cafe-du-monde beignets

Beignets are a French fried type of dough nut, which is different from the traditional dough nut we all know by the fact that it is square and it lack the whole inside. It is like a soft pillow made out of fluffy dough, which traditionally is served with powdered sugar, but can also be served with fruits or jam. They are also known as fried dough nuts.

cafe-du-monde beignets

beignets Chicory coffee

The mixture of chicory and coffee gives a taste similar to chocolate, that might be the reason why this type of serving coffee became so popular. A little history on the combination is here (Straight from Café du Monde official website )  :

The taste for coffee and chicory was developed by the French during their civil war. Coffee was scarce during those times, and they found that chicory added body and flavor to the brew. The Acadians from Nova Scotia brought this taste and many other french customs (heritage) to Louisiana. Chicory is the root of the endive plant. Endive is a type of lettuce. The root of the plant is roasted and ground. It is added to the coffee to soften the bitter edge of the dark roasted coffee. It adds an almost chocolate flavor to the Cafe Au Lait

Since it is a traditional recipe, it is also a part of the menu of Café du Monde, alongside with chicory coffee and café au lait.

Café du Monde is actually a traditional coffee stand, which was first opened in the year 1862, in the New Orleans French Market. Since its opening, this coffee stand is opened 24 h a day, seven days a week, and you can find it closed only on Christmas Day or whenever it is threatened by any hurricane. Today you can still find Café du Monde in the French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana, on Decatur Street. It’s menu has not changed at all over time, so you will still find the traditional chicory coffee, café au lait, which means half coffee and half hot milk, chocolate milk or simple, orange juice made out of freshly squeezed oranges and, the only food on the menu, the French beignets, the same as they were made centuries ago.

cafe-du-monde-menu

cafe-du-monde-menu2

I am also surprised to find that beignets are very easy to make, as a homemade treat. You just need a package of active yeast (1/4 ounce), ¼ cup of warm water, 1 cup of evaporated milk, ½ cup of canola oil (or butter), ¼ cup of sugar, 1 egg, 4 – ½ cups of self-rising flour, oil for frying and confectioners’ sugar.

Even if they are tasty, a 2 oz. beignet contain about 147 calories, so if you want to keep fit then you should not create a daily habit out of this dish. To have a complete idea about this recipe you should know that beignet is pronounced “be-nye”. Now you are a complete connoisseur. Of course, as any recipe, their composition may vary and there are variants where a beignet is made with potatoes, sea food, vegetable and fruits of any kind. Also so you know Cafe du Monde sells the their famous beignet Mix and coffee at Amazon: Please find the links below :

Beignet Mix by Cafe du Monde (1.75 pound)

2 (Two) Cans of Cafe Du Monde

If you are in New Orleans and want to grab a coffee and a beignet, you should know that there are plenty of places to do that. Like Café Beignet, Coquette, Morning Call Coffee Stand or Street Car Cafe. But everyone will tell you that the best beignets in New Orleans are at Café du Monde.

French quarters beignets

Check out  a video that shows how the Beignets are prepared at the famous Cafe du Monde.

Discover the Swamp tours near New Orleans

Sometimes it is not necessary to go too far away to find places that have the power to surprise you. If you are among those people who enjoy spending quality time in the outdoors, then you should know that a special place waits for you to discover it, right outside New Orleans. This special place is the swamp that lies in the vicinity of this big city. I may sound weird to take a swamp tour, but you will be amazed of the complex ecosystem that is able to develop in these conditions. Give this place a chance and choose to do something out of the ordinary, by checking in your to do list to visit a swamp.

swamp tours new orleans

Slowly people start to understand the role of a swamp in the entire ecosystem and end up appreciating the way it develops and goes on by its own unique rules. The swamp tours in New Orleans are meant to give anyone, with a desire to experience something new, an overall look of how a swamp can look, with its creatures and vegetation and, why not, have a very relaxing and fun day on board of a cute boat that floats on the streams of the swamp. In spite of its rather dull name, a swamp can be quiet and attraction and it really has what to show you, this being the main reason why so many people are starting to get interested in visiting places like this, and the reason why there are so many tour operators that are ready to help you get that experience. If you want to get on a swamp tour you must get out of New Orleans. Every tour operator has its own departure spot, but mainly it is about 10 to 11 miles away from the city.

Depending on the tour operator, the tour can be from 2 up to 4 hours, in which you will slowly deepen into the mysterious beauty of the swamp. The main attraction of a swamp tour is to see the gators, some operators even allow you to feed them raw chicken, with certain limitations of course. Besides gators you can encounter several snake species, the lumbering nutria. More scarce are the raccoon or swamp dear. The fun of it is that you never know what you may stumble upon on your tour. The vegetation is unique here, just think about the old cypresses and a lot of Spanish moss that give the place a one of a kind look. The average prices can range from $25 for adults / $15 for children and can get up to $52 for adults and $32.50 for children, under 12 years old.

Please find a few more swamp and gator pictures that I shot at the swamp tour :

 

Some of the best known swamp tour operators are:

Airboat Adventures LLC (They can offer Airboat Tours, Swamp Tours and Night Tours.),
5145 Fleming Park Rd.,
Lafitte, LA 70067,
Phone : (504) 885-7325, (888) 467-9267
Website: www.airboatadventures.com

 

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Airboat Tours by Arthur Matherne Inc (They offer Airboat Tours, Swamp Tours, Night Tours and Multilingual Tours.)
4262 Hwy 90 E,
Des Allemandes, LA 70030,
Phone : (985) 758-2365, (800) 975-9345,
Website www.airboattours.com

Cajun Encounters Swamp, City, and Plantation Tours LLC
(They can offer Bus Tours, Flatboat Tours, Swamp Tours, Night Tours, City/Neighborhood Tours, Cemetery Tours, Multilingual Tours, French Quarter Tours, Plantation Tours and Personalized/Specialized Tours.)
55345 Hwy 90,
Slidell, LA 70461,
Phone : (504) 834-1770, (866) 928-6877,
Website www.airboattours.com

Just enjoy your swamp adventure.