WINTER 2021 VOLUME 3, ISSUE 4
The Greatest Joy
St. Bernard Parish Hospital Celebrates Growth
From The White House
Christmas Gifts &
Family Recipes Passed Down
to School Houses:
Decorating Ideas | Pg. 33
to Next Generation | Pg. 16
Chef Mike Morel | Pg. 26 1
Savor your Soul in Historic St. Bernard Parish
Celebrate our rich history while you explore Spanish St. Bernard at Los Isleños Museum Complex and historic village during our Isleños Festival. Connect with our coastal communities in Eastern St. Bernard, and experience world class fishing. For a natural encounter, the St. Bernard State Park is an ideal spot for camping and hiking located along the Mississippi River. Take a road trip down the San Bernardo Scenic By-way, and enjoy local restaurants, shopping and culture. Live like a local and Stay in St. Bernard Parish.
Winter Issue 2021
Only 5 miles from the Historic French Quarter Vi s i t S t B e r nard.com | (504) 278.4242
Winter Issue 2021
Publisher’s Pen: Granny’s Pie
White House Chef Comes Back Home
Jeffries Shares Joy of Love
The Battlefield: Recognizing Our Roots
St. Bernard Hospital Celebrates Growth
Avoid Injuries While Shopping
Holiday Self-Care: No “Bah Humbug”
Families Carry On Culinary Traditions
Gifts 33- Holiday Special Section 59
Keep your healthy state. Don’t delay preventive screenings.
Early detection is critical to winning the fight against lung cancer. Our lung cancer screening uses the lowest radiation CT scan available, which produces a 3D image of your lungs. The screening is non-invasive, and there are no injections or dyes to drink. The scan takes less than five minutes.
Call 504-493-2200 for more information or talk to your doctor if you have questions about lung cancer screenings.
St. Bernard Parish Hospital 8050 West Judge Perez Drive Chalmette, LA 70043
Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Charles D. Jackson, President JPR (Jackson Public Relations) Enterprises, LLC Office - 2429 Octavia Drive, Chalmette, LA Mail - P.O. Box 57801, New Orleans, LA 70157 Email - email@example.com Website - stbernardmagazine.com Phone - (504) 609-7509
Editor & Publisher
Charles D. Jackson
Layout & Design
Michelle A. Nicholson
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Frank DiFazio, M.D. Jan Golden Jessie Gray Charles D. Jackson Dr. John Dee Jeffries Barry Lemoine Michelle A. Nicholson Nellie Palmer Diana Zelden
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Photographers Farrah Ross Appleman Katelan Neitzschnan Michelle A. Nicholson Alexis Pritchard
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Winter Issue 2021
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© 2021 JPR Enterprises, LLC, New Orleans, LA. All rights reserved. Printed in the USA. The information contained in St. Bernard Magazine is intended for educational purposes only. JPR Enterprises, LLC, publisher of St. Bernard Magazine, does not endorse or promote any of the products or services described in the pages of St. Bernard Magazine, and the publisher does not verify the accuracy of any claims made in advertisements contained.
Publisher's Pen by Charles D. Jackson
Savoring Granny’s Sweet Potato Pie In this issue of St. Bernard Magazine, assistant editor Michelle Nicholson shares holiday recipes from St. Bernard families handed down from generation to generation (pages 16-24). Growing up in Florida, one of my favorite holiday desserts was my grandmother’s sweet potato pie. Watching the 85-yearold boil, peel, mash, and add ingredients to the pie filling was as much fun as taking my first bite. In fact, when she wasn’t looking, I’d scoop fingers-full of filling before she poured it into the crust. Sometimes my moves weren’t fast enough, and I’d get swiped by granny’s switch. (That was no fun!) My oldest sister Barbara Jo watched, too. Unlike me, she didn’t get swiped, but took notes, and passed on the pie recipe to her second-oldest daughter, who makes it just like Granny! One day, I might try my hand at baking. But since I hardly ever cook, I won’t bank on making it like Granny Mary Lou Singletary or my niece Cassandra Ruffin. Perhaps some seasoned cooks will try the recipe and invite me for a taste test. Here’s the recipe:
Ingredients (To make 8 pies)
2 dozen small/medium-sized
Boil sweet potatoes in the skin for 40 to 50 minutes.
sweet potatoes 8 room-temperature eggs 4 sticks of melted butter 1 1/2 cups of sugar (or to your liking)
2 tbsp nutmeg 2 tbsp cinnamon 2 tbsp allspice
Peel and discard skins. P reheat oven to 375 degrees. M ash potatoes with potato ricer to separate the sweet potatoes from the strings in potatoes.
M ix in eggs, one at a time. Add melted butter, sugar, and flour. Mix.
2 tbsp vanilla extract
A dd vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. Mix.
2 pinches of flour
T aste pie filling to see if anything else is needed.
8 frozen pie crusts
P lace filling in pie shells—not to the top, but midway—and
bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the oven.
Potatoes ricer (to mash) Mixer
The magazine highlights the rich history, people, progress, traditions, culture, resilience, diversity, civics, small business, schools, organizers, and the extraordinarily welcoming community atmosphere of St. Bernard Parish. This mixture makes ‘Da Parish “The Most Unique County (Parish) in the Country.”
What Joy! Secret Love Letters
Commentary Dr. John Dee Jeffries
“I loo-vee yoou, Bro-tho John,” she whispered in my ear. “I loo-vee yoou wid all my heart, Brotho John, wid all my heart.” Each Sunday was like Christmas. Sunday after Sunday, she would share her love and joy with me as she hugged me tightly. I hold poignant, powerful memories of this very special woman. She loved God. She loved God’s church. And she loved me, God’s pastor. Through her love, her pure genuine love, I learned valuable lessons about the joy of giving—especially the joy of giving hugs.
In our world, too often,people with Down Syndrome are taken for granted and often overlooked by others. In reality, these special people are special gifts from God. She was one of God’s greatest givers of joy and love—and of hugs! Someone once said, “If these people ran the world, their ability to minister to others would not be wasted.” This special friend of mine is in heaven now. One day I’ll see her again and, with joy, we’ll sit together and read those secret “love letters,” one by one.
Every Sunday she gave me secret “love letters,” but I couldn’t read a word that she had written— not a word. She would write these “love letters” over a period of several hours every Saturday. When she knew that the letters were complete, she would roll them together tightly and wrap a fat brown rubber band around them.
Dr. John Dee Jeffries, long term pastor of First Baptist Church, Chalmette, has relinquished his pastoral ministries at the church to lead Published By Parables, a worldwide Christian book / eBook publishing ministry.
Spanish Louisiana in Historic St. Bernard Parish
Visit Historic St. Bernard to experience local Canarian Spanish culture at Los Isleños Museum Complex and Historic Village. From our customs and rituals to our unique folklore, St. Bernard is sure to impress the history enthusiast in you!
Winter Issue 2021
Only 5 miles from the Historic French Quarter VisitStBernard.com | (504) 278.4242
Photo by Michelle A. Nicholson
10 WInter Issue 2021
St. Bernard Parish Hospital Finds Greatest Joy Serving the Community
he holiday season is a time when we might find ourselves filled with gratitude and joy, which may lead us to reflect on our past—how far we’ve come and what we have accomplished over a certain period of time. Over the last four years, St. Bernard Parish Hospital (SBPH) has thrived under Ochsner Health management, with numerous milestones to celebrate.
In 2016, Mary Hand was appointed Chairwoman of the Hospital Service District Board and was instrumental in solidifying St. Bernard Parish Hospital’s partnership with Ochsner Health. Since November 2017, when the partnership with Ochsner Health was finalized, SBPH has increased specialty care offerings, significantly improved quality, implemented telehealth platforms, and acted as a health and wellness community leader through numerous outreach programs. As one of the largest employers in St. Bernard Parish, SBPH provides more than $25 million total salary dollars in economic impact to the parish—and continues to grow and flourish. In October, SBPH was thrilled to accept, on behalf of the Hospital Service District, a second donation of land by the Meraux Foundation. The donation consisted of an additional 8.9 acres of land, which will be used for future ancillary services, complementing the broader strategy for the area including healthcare, housing, retail, and amenities. Ochsner Health and the parish’s Hospital Service District have reinvested the positive cash flow the hospital has maintained into upgrading equipment, including the conversion to EPIC, a world-leading electronic medical record program, and various telehealth and digital health advancements intended to improve patient safety outcomes.
Other updates include, but are not limited to:
• 60% of radiology equipment upgraded • All new state-of-the art hospital beds • New cardiac monitoring system • Anesthesia equipment • Echocardiogram • Blood Gas Machine • Non-Invasive Ventilator • Glidescope
“The investments made—not only into the hospital, but also to the upgraded equipment—are investments made in our employees and patients, allowing for the best possible care right here in their very own community,” said Kim Keene, Chief Executive Officer of St. Bernard Parish Hospital. “We strive to make healthcare accessible to everyone in St. Bernard Parish. In the last few years, we have experienced tremendous growth, and I hope to continue with this same high level of commitment to healthcare in the future. Ochsner has made great investments in our employees by offering advanced education, professional development, and competitive benefits.” The opening of the hospital’s pediatric clinic in July 2021 is another example of SBPH’s long-term efforts to reduce barriers to healthcare by making services affordable, convenient, and accessible for patients of all ages. The team at Ochsner Health Center – St. Bernard is part of Ochsner Hospital for Children, which has offered exceptional pediatric care for more than 75 years. While we celebrate our accomplishments, we must acknowledge the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. SBPH serves as a vital community resource for COVID-19 testing, treatment, and vaccinations. Through our collective resilience and perseverance, we will continue to improve St. Bernard Parish Hospital, while serving our patients’ healthcare needs.
Winter Issue 2021
The investments made—not only into the hospital, but also the upgraded equipment—are investments made in our employees and patients allowing for the best possible care right here in their very own community. – Kim Keene, Chief Executive Officer, St. Bernard Parish Hospital
Ask a Doctor by Dr. Frank DiFazio
Don’t Let Carpal Tunnel Ruin Holiday Shopping
In our current digital age, with increased computer and smartphone time, it’s important to be aware of carpal tunnel syndrome, specifically its symptoms and treatment. Your time on these devices— especially while shopping online during the holiday season— shouldn’t be interrupted by pain. Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression of a nerve in the hand and wrist. The median nerve is the softest structure within the carpal tunnel. Anything that increases swelling and pressure within the tunnel can lead to compression of this nerve. This can occur from overuse, repetitive motion, poor position during use, trauma, or pregnancy.
We Thank You For Your Faithful Patronage
Symptoms can include the following: • Tingling and numbness in the hand or wrist • Sharp pain that shoots up the arm or down to the fingers • Hand stiffness or cramping • Trouble making a fist • Hand weakness and clumsiness If you are experiencing pain, it is best to consult a physician. Various treatment options include rest, night splinting, stretching exercises, and using proper typing techniques while using a keyboard and mouse. If symptoms persist despite appropriate medical management, outpatient surgical options may offer the best lasting cure of carpal tunnel syndrome. Frank DiFazio, M.D., is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, with a medical career spanning over 30 years. He has held several prestigious professional appointments, including Clinician at the Yale School of Medicine, Clinical Assistant Professor at the New York Medical College, and Chief of Orthopedic
3523 Paris Rd. • Chalmette, LA 70043
504-267-5509 Hours of Operation: Monday - Saturday 5AM-10PM Sunday 6:30AM-9PM
Surgery for the Permanente Medical Group of Mid-America. To schedule an appointment with him at St. Bernard Parish Hospital, visit www.ochsner.org or call 504-493-2200.
"Family Owned & Operated" 13
Health & Wellness
SELF-CARE By Dina Zelden
There are many holidays, both religious and secular, that are celebrated this time of year. While each has a unique origin and purpose, what they have in common is celebrating with family and friends. Socializing, gift-giving, and other holiday elements can turn anyone into Scrooge, if not properly managed. Avoid that “bah, humbug” feeling with these important tips.
There is no need to feel depleted by the end of the holiday season. With some preparation and thought, you can enjoy all this time of year has to offer while still feeling relaxed and ready to face the new year.
Plan Ahead Holidays put pressure on one’s life in two main areas— time and money. Both seem in short supply this time of year, unless we plan ahead. Take time before the season begins to assess the situation. Consider your calendar and schedule events carefully. Holiday events can be enjoyable and relaxing or overwhelming and stressful. Think about all the variables before responding yes to every invitation that arrives in your inbox or mailbox. Likewise, make a financial plan for dealing with holiday spending. In addition to a gift budget, don’t forget to include decorating and any hosting expenses. Be realistic and scale back as needed. Well-managed finances in December means a secure start to the new year!
Look Inward Holiday demands often cause changes to one’s routine. Try to set aside time for self-care. Getting enough sleep, staying hydrated, and exercising help with management of stress and should be a priority during the holidays. Schedule down time to relax and recharge.
Remember that others struggle at this time as well. Call a relative who may be lonely. Offer to help an elderly neighbor run errands. Team up with a friend to conquer your to-do lists. Running errands, wrapping presents, and attending to other tasks can be more pleasant with
Winter Issue 2021
Family Gifts Passing on Culinary Traditions
By Michelle A. Nicholson
his holiday season, residents honor their ancestors and bless us with special dishes, their recipes and stories. These are family gifts that have been handed down for generations— the kinds of gifts that define St. Bernard Parish’s culture.
Great- Aunt Georgina’s Sweet Potato Bread Ingredients 6 medium sweet potatoes 2 cup sugar ¼ cup flour 1 tsp baking powder A pinch of salt 6 eggs 2 cups milk 1 cup evaporated milk
Directions Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Peel and grate with a hand grater, using a small side.
Put potatoes in a large bowl and add all other ingredients.
Use an electric mixer,
1 ½ sticks melted butter
on medium speed,
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp cinnamon
Be sure to scrape the sides of
¼ tsp nutmeg
the bowl with a spatula.
Pour into a greased baking dish and bake for 1 hour.
Winter Issue 2021
Mable S. Stewart ’s Legacy : Making Grammy’s Pralines With Gladys Sanchez Mable Smith Stewart was born April 27, 1934, in Verret, Louisiana. She was reared by two most loving parents, Reverend Sam and Gladys Smith. Mable loves her church and is very involved in doing the work of the church. She is a member of First Baptist Church of Verret. She was honored by the St. Bernard Parish Council for her work in the community. Mable has been a regular participant in the Domino Sugar Festival, the Louisiana Crawfish Festival, and the Los Isleños Festival as well as a regular vendor at the St. Bernard Farmer’s Market. On Mable’s 80th birthday, the Los Isleños Heritage and Cultural Society presented her with a commendation for representing the people of St. Bernard in heritage and cultural traditions. Mable pursued her education at Delgado Community College, earning a certification in culinary arts. Under the direction of Mason Odrick, a licensed dietician of Louisiana state, she crossenrolled in the University of Florida’s Supervision for Hospitals and Nursing Home program. In 1979, Mable successfully passed her coursework and met the requirements for certification from the Department of Hospitals, Institutions, and Educational Food Service Society. Mable learned to cook and bake from her great-aunt, Georgina Williams. They cooked dishes like gumbo and stewed chicken—but Aunt Georgina’s favorite thing to make was sweet potato bread. With Aunt Georgina, Mable learned and perfected how to make pies and pecan pralines. She started Grammy’s Pralines with this recipe, and her candy is distributed in over 30 retail locations throughout Orleans, St. Bernard, Plaquemines, and Jefferson parishes. Retired and living in Verret, Mable has taught her daughter and son-in-law, Gladys & Troy Sanchez, how to cook, package and distribute Grammy’s Pralines.
Keeping Family Memories Alive With Angela Rigaud I am really big on this. I have my mom’s recipes, my dad’s mom’s, mine—me and my man started one book to give to our kids, so they have a ‘go-to’ book of recipes to cook from. It’s my heart and soul. I started pushing to get the recipes in my teens, when my grandma was alive. Sharing recipes—it is where memories come from. The original paper that my grandma wrote her crawfish bisque recipe on fell apart. It’s my dad’s mom, Anna Rigaud, who made it. It has the most memories. She put us kids to work, peeling crawfish, cleaning heads. All the ladies stayed in the kitchen. This recipe made everyone work together—it took all of us to make it. We all would sit and talk and visit, then eat. These Sunday dinners were the best. I still have flashbacks when I taste crawfish bisque, grandma’s recipe. I feel like I’m in the kitchen, watching the women play cards, drinking beer—grandma would be drinking her Dixie with one ice cube—with the men in the other room watching football. I still smell the wood paneling. I still remember mom sucking out the heads, using her fingers to dig the stuffing out. I plan to teach my girls to help prepare this dish as soon as they are older. It’s delicious—especially over angel hair pasta. The recipe says rice, but my mom, Margaret Rigaud, did pasta, put her Italian twist on it. I lost my mom in February—but family recipes seem the way to feel close still. It makes me keep the memory of her and my grandma alive.
Crawfish Bisque Ingredients 6 lbs. live crawfish 4 sprigs parsley, chopped 3 green onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced and divided 1 slice white bread, torn 1 stick of butter, divided 4 tbsp flour 1 onion, chopped ½ cup bell pepper, chopped 1 cup celery, chopped 1 small can tomatoes ½ can tomato paste Salt & black pepper, to taste 18
Winter Issue 2021
Directions Boil 6 pounds of crawfish for 20 minutes. Pick out the largest 2 dozen heads. Pick heads from tails. Put tailmat in one bowl, legs and claws in another.
Prepare liquid by crushing legs and claws and boil in 2 quarts of water for 20 minutes.
Prepare stuffing by combining parsley, green onions, 1 clove garlic, bread, egg, and 2 cups of meat from the crawfish.
Fry all of the stuffing ingredients in 4 tbsps butter. Pack the stuffing into the heads. Brush flour over heads & fry in hot fat until brown.
Prepare roux by combining, in a skillet 4 tbsp butter, 4 tbsp flour, 1 clove garlic, onion, bell pepper, celery, tomatoes, tomato paste, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook roux for 20 minutes.
Add #3 (crawfish stock) to thin roux. Drop heads and 1 cup crawfish meat into the mixture (roux). Simmer slowly.
Serve over rice! Yields 4 servings.
Recalling a Bountiful Childhood With Ryan Walle
Stuffed Mirlitons Ingredients 6 mirlitons 2 lbs. shrimp, ham, and/or crabmeat ¼ cup oil 1 bunch of green onions, chopped 1 cup celery ½ cup bell pepper ½ bunch parsley, chopped 1 head of garlic, minced
This is a special recipe because it’s my grandmother Carol Hearty’s recipe. I remember it from a little kid. I had family in Hopedale and Shell Beach, so it wasn’t just for holidays— we just had a lot of seafood all the time. I remember eating it, not necessarily seeing her cooking it. I have made it but off of memory, so it wasn’t this recipe. I just got this recipe about 6 months ago from my aunt—but with no ingredient amounts. It was all based on how much mirliton you had. I also make barbecue shrimp, shrimp creole, and a couple of other recipes from my grandmother. Stuffed mirliton is even easier to make as a casserole, instead of stuffing them. It’s just as good.
Seasoned bread crumbs 4 tbsp butter (or margarine) Season to taste: oregano, thyme, curry powder, red pepper (crushed or cayenne), black pepper, & salt
Directions Boil the mirlitons until tender. Cool, cut in half lengthwise, & scoop out pulp. Be careful not to break skin.
Chop the pulp and then drain the pulp in a colander (+ cheesecloth). Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Fry down green onions, parsley, celery, garlic, and green pepper in oil.
Add shrimp (or ham, crab, or combo), and fry until shrimp are pink Add pulp & fry down. Add salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, curry, and crushed red pepper (or cayenne) to taste.
Scoop back into shells (or spread in a greased casserole dish). Top with bread crumbs & dot with butter (or margarine). Bake until golden brown or freeze until later.
Culinary Culture of Celebration With Sharene Jabar If there is one thing we have all learned through this decade’s pandemic, it is that nothing is more soul-satisfying than a big gathering of family and friends. Growing up, we always had a full house on the weekends. My mother could always be found a few feet away, cooking all kinds of deliciousness. Her specialty, though, has always been Palestinian cuisine, which she learned from her mother. Hummus, a popular dip made of chickpeas and sesame paste, was always served on a platter or small plates at the table of every family dinner, holiday celebration, or party. It is not just an appetizer, it is THE appetizer. No menu would be complete without it. Every single occasion, you could look around and see everyone following the same pattern: tear a small piece of pita bread, pinch it between your fingers, and scoop that tangy garlicky goodness straight into your mouth. Undoubtedly, hummus was the first recipe ever taught to me by my mother. She would hover, as she is prone to do, to make sure that I did not skip a step or miss an ingredient. She would remind me to taste it along the way, as it would be absolutely catastrophic if I messed up something as important as the hummus. This dip practically flows through my veins, through my entire bloodline. Watching guests and family scoop and smile and hearing Mmm, who made the hummus? being called out across a room is one of the absolute best feelings. I made it. I did that. I nourished stomachs and hearts and souls. What really makes my heart happy is seeing my children and what has become their culture of celebration. They are lucky enough to know how to pinch crawfish tails in one hand and pinch pita bread in the other. And whenever a friend or neighbor stops by, my kids always open the fridge and the cabinets, share their favorite drinks and snacks, and never ever let anyone leave hungry.
Traditional Palestinian Hummus Quick-and-Easy
ingredients in a blender
garbanzo Beans), drained
and blend until smooth and
1 cup Tahini (sesame paste, which can be purchased locally at Stella Maris)
½ Lemon, juiced 1 clove garlic *Hummus is almost always topped with
2 tsp. salt
extra virgin olive oil. Chopped parsley,
2 ice cubes
jalapenos, and paprika (not smoked), and chickpeas—or a salsa made of cilantro, garlic, jalapeno, salt, and lemon juice —are also delicious garnishes.
20 Winter Issue 2021
1 15 oz. can Chickpeas (same as
Add more salt, garlic, or lemon to taste.
If the mixture is too thick to blend properly, add one teaspoon at a time of ice cold water and stir the mixture until it blends easily.
¼ tsp. Cumin (optional) * Hummus is most often eaten with pita bread (tear and scoop straight into your mouth). Crackers, fresh veggies, or any hearty bread is an acceptable vessels for enjoyment.
Favorite Family Dish
With Angie Rae Miller
This recipe came from my dad’s grandma, Louise Lepine, who raised him. Growing up, we lived just two houses down from her, so I spent a lot of time over there. I was so little when she started letting me cook with her that I had to stand on a chair in front of the stove. I was too young to help with the chopping and everything, but she would let me stir everything into the pot. This is the first thing I remember cooking with her, and it’s still one of my favorites. Before my dad, Arthur Miller, worked for the school board, he was a trawler down the road. We always had a lot of seafood, and whenever we had a crab boil, there were always leftovers that we would use to make stuffed crabs.
Directions Pick crabmeat and fat from crabs and store, covered, in your refrigerator.
Ingredients 1 dozen boiled crabs *Or 1 lb. lump crabmeat, soaked in a 1 - 1 ½ tsp of liquid crab boil 1 stick of butter
1 cup chopped onion 1 bunch of green onions, chopped ½ cup chopped bell pepper 4 garlic cloves, minced 2 cups stale French bread, cubed 1 tbsp chopped parsley
Salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste 1 egg, beaten Seasoned bread crumbs ½ stick of butter
Clean the back shells (8 or so should do it): Break off the face and legs, scrape the insides, and rinse well; then boil in water for 15-20 minutes. Drain and cool. *You can use aluminum shells, ramekins, or a casserole dish instead.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Moisten the French bread by adding water and then squeezing out the excess.
Saute the veggies in butter until tender. Add the moistened French bread and mix together well, making sure there are no big clumps.
Fold in the crabmeat and remove from heat. Stir in parsley, salt, and peppers. Stir in the beaten egg. Spoon the stuffing into the shells. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and dot with additional butter.
Bake until golden brown—about 15 minutes—and serve!
Showing Love in ‘The Village’
With Garland Sanchez
I was born and raised in Eastern St. Bernard, in the small town of Verret. Everyone was related or treated as they were. The holidays were very special, even if we did not have a lot of money. People gathered and visited almost every house in the “village” from Christmas Eve until New Year’s Day. The menu was almost the same at every home, but everyone ate and enjoyed each other’s food and company. One thing I remember being a specialty at our house was oyster dressing. It seemed to only be made at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Seafood was plentiful and eaten regularly, but this dish was a holiday treat. I watched my grandmother, Odile Sanchez, cook large meals for the family — or direct my mother, Lerlyn Taylor, and her sisters, Ella Rita Sanchez and Althea Winesberry, on how to cook. The time in the kitchen preparing was as important as the meal itself. There was always laughter and reminiscing. I watched and enjoyed both. I helped and learned hospitality from an early age. My grandmother and mother often cooked for church functions. My mother owned a small restaurant in Violet serving popular local dishes and wild game. These experiences, encouraged me to earn a degree in restaurant administration from University of Southwest Louisiana in Lafayette. I have managed different restaurant concepts and managed corporate dining for 30-plus years in Minnesota. I moved back home and currently oversee food service at the NASA Michoud facility. My children and grandchildren also enjoy cooking and hosting others. My son managed a corporate foodservice and my daughter worked in food services. But more than business, food is a vital part of our family gatherings—it is an unspoken method of showing love.
Directions Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Strain oyster juice from oysters,
1 loaf stale French bread
1 quart fresh oyster
reserving juice. In a bowl, crumble and tear the stale French bread.
1 large onion
Combine oyster juice and stale French bread. Stir occasionally, until the bread has evenly absorbed the oyster juice.
1 clove garlic
Mix beef with seasoning and spices, parsley and brown in a heavy pan.
1 bunch choppped parsley
Add bread moistened with oyster juice to the browned meat.
2 lbs. lean ground Beef
¼ stalk celery 1 large bell pepper Salt & cayenne pepper, to taste 3 fresh whole eggs, beaten
¾ cup seasoned breadcrumbs
22 Winter Issue 2021
Chop the oysters and add them to the mix, while hot. Allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Add eggs to the mixture. Skim excess oil. Spread in a baking dish, top with breadcrumbs, and bake for 30 minutes. Garnish with parsley.
Sharing Family’s Secret Elixir With Dominique Thompson My mom, Daniell (Shorter) Migliore, has made turkey noodle soup after every holiday for as long as I can remember. Sometimes she adds cubed potatoes, corn, and other vegetables that we have leftover. The chicken version of this was the first thing I ever cooked my now-husband when he had the flu when we first started dating. I went over to her house and asked her to teach me how to make him soup. He acted like I cooked him a 5 star meal. I also made it for a family friend right before Covid, and she was like, “Am I saying it cured my bronchitis? No, but I’m saying it feels like it did!” The trick is to put enough cayenne to make your nose run if you’re sick.
Leftover Turkey (or Chicken) Noodle Soup If you have an excessive amount of cooked turkey/chicken, you can double all the other ingredients.
Ingredients Leftover turkey/chicken meat &
Stovetop Directions: If using leftover turkey/chicken – On the stove, boil the carcass
6 cups water
in 6 cups of water for at least an hour before removing bones and adding boullion. Add all other ingredients, except the cooked turkey/chicken and noodles.
4 bouillon cubes OR 4 tbsp Better
except the noodles.
carcass *OR 1 lb. raw chicken
6 carrots, thinly sliced horizontally 4 stalks of celery, thinly sliced 1-2 onions, diced 1 head of garlic, minced Sprigs of fresh herbs (rosemary, thyme, oregano)
Salt, pepper, cayenne, onion powder, garlic powder to taste
1/2 package of medium wide egg noodles. Optional * Juice from half a lemon –
*If using raw chicken, put it in a pot and add all other ingredients,
Bring to a boil and then simmer until carrots and celery are al dente. Try an hour.
Bring soup to a rolling boil, add egg noodles, and cook as long as the package directs.
Stir in leftover turkey meat (and, if you like, lemon juice) and serve.
Pressure Cooker Directions: If using a pressure cooker, put turkey carcass and water in a pot on high pressure for 20 minutes.
Depressurize, remove carcass, and add everything except cooked turkey/chicken.
Cook on high pressure for 25 minutes. Depressurize. (If you started with raw chicken, remove and shred, then return to the pot.)
Set pressure cooker to sear/sauté so the soup comes to a boil, and add egg noodles until fully cooked. Do NOT cook noodles with the pressure cooker lid on.
When the noodles are done, turn off the heat and remove the pot from the cooker.
A Sweet Inheritance
With Denise Goodman
I remember my grandma, Antoinette (Toni) Meza Pitfield, making trifles for gatherings. I was always amazed as a kid by how she layered it so pretty. I helped her make it a few times. She taught me what a trifle was, explaining the layering of foods. She made a strawberry trifle more than anything I remember. She’d have trifles for Christmas or Thanksgiving— sometimes for just a get-together, but not as often as holidays.
Grandmother Toni Pitfield
Strawberry Trifle Ingredients
This is the recipe I’ve made 100 times. It’s my go-to. I started my trifle probably 15+ years ago. I use it for no reason, not just for holidays. Sometimes I make them in individual cups for showers. I even made them in wine glasses for my daughter Brandi’s prom dinner. Since then, she has made it for larger gatherings because it is such a big dessert and goes farther. My grandmother would use her fingers to place the fruit perfectly, to make sure all areas were covered, and a spoon for layering the jelly and whipped cream, spreading it so pretty on the top. It was almost her masterpiece. I miss the heck out of her! She taught me the art of presentation in food. It has to be as perfect and as pretty as I can make it!
1 16-oz Angel Food Cake
2 clamshells of fresh strawberries
Cut cake into 1-inch
1 container strawberry gel 8-oz cream cheese, softened 1 can condensed milk 8-oz whipped topping
Slice strawberries and place in a mixing bowl, saving one large berry for a garnish.
Add gel to the sliced strawberries and mix well.
Place cream cheese and condensed milk in another bowl. Use an electric mixer to blend until smooth.
In a trifle bowl (or any clear bowl that will let you see the layers!) place 1/3 of the cake.
Drizzle with 1/3 cream cheese mixture. Top with 1/3 of the berry/gel mix. Repeat steps 5-7, making 3 layers of each: cake, cream, berries.
Finish with a layer of whipped topping. (If you have a cake decorator, save a small amount of the whipped topping to garnish with pretty flowerets. Place a slice of the saved berry on each flower to finish the garnish.)
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Parish Pride by Barry Lemonie
Home Again After Navy & White House, Morel Anchors Chef Career Inside St. Bernard Schools
From serving food to a pair of Presidents at the White House to serving food to nearly 8,000 students in school cafeterias, St. Bernard native Michael Morel’s career and life have been full of service and adventure.
ichael Morel’s culinary career began after his high school graduation in 1998. He knew he wasn’t ready for the expenses or self-discipline college would require, so he explored the different service branches before enlisting in the Navy. “My dad told me to pick a job that you can use when you get out or retire from the military,” Morel reflected. His roots in the New Orleans area and its abundant culinary and hotel management opportunities made his decision easy. After eight weeks of bootcamp and time in cooking school, Morel began his career as a Mess Management Specialist. Morel also received special training before his first deployment—aboard the USS West Virginia, a nuclear submarine stationed in Kings Bay, Georgia. “I served as a Supervisor Culinary Specialist and was responsible for the preparation and serving over 500 daily meals to 185 sailors and crew,” Morel said, “doing what we call a lot of clanging and baning.” Because the submarine was to be at sea for three months, Morel said all the food and supplies
26 Winter Issue 2021
needed to be onboard. “Just for fun, we did the math and figured we had enough stuff on that sub to feed a family of four for three years.” Morel said he learned a lot about the Navy and himself during this time. He credits Gene Carter for both. “He was my mentor and always reminded us about the stereotypes of the drunken sailor. He told us ‘On Monday morning, I want to talk to you, not about you,’” Morel said.
Sailing and Seeing the World Morel enjoyed this stint until he received news that would change the trajectory of his career. “I found out I was diabetic, so that I couldn’t be on a sub anymore!” There was also another big change —Morel married his hometown sweetheart, Heather. The newlyweds began their life together on the Submarine Base in Kings Bay, Georgia, with Morel maintaining the 320-room Single Sailor Barracks Building. He also provided customer service for the over 5,400 guests who stay on base each year at the Navy Gateway Inn & Suites. Like a hotel manager, Morel trained his staff in numerous customer service activities like
group reservations and accounting. Here, Morel also gained invaluable management experience and earned a number of promotions. By 2007, he had earned the rank of Leading Petty Officer and embarked on his next journey, aboard the USS Farragut, a warship. Morel said he was honored to take part in the ship’s six-month maiden voyage. “I was truly grateful for this experience,” he said. Aboard the Farragut, Morel truly saw the world. He walked on five continents, visited Rio De Janeiro, and sailed the Straits of Magellan. His ship even had an encounter with drug runners off the coast of South America. “This was an extremely eye opening tour for me. I keep thinking how few people ever in their lifetime get to see what I am seeing right now.” Morel said the quality of life is better on a ship than a sub: “It’s more like a 9 to 5.” After four years, Morel was offered an opportunity in Japan, but with his wife and their young daughter, Grace, living in St. Bernard, Morel wanted to be closer to home. This led him to Gulfport, Mississippi, where he was assigned a position as the Operations Manager of the Navy Construction Battalion Center. He said this allowed him to spend more time with his family—but the commute was a bit of a grind. “It was Gulport at 3:30 a.m. and Meraux for 3:30 p.m.,” he said.
Lifetime Opportunity: White House Chef Morel oversaw the daily operations of the galley that served more than 1,500 meals a day until 2014, when the opportunity of a lifetime presented itself: “I was offered a position at the White House in Presidential Food Services.” He knew the new gig would mean more time away from home, but with the support of his wife and extended family, Morel packed his bags and his knives and headed to Washington, DC. “It was the best decision of my life,” he said. “The opportunity was knocking, and I not only answered the door, but really took advantage of it.” By then, Morel was a Chief Petty Officer and, as such, served under both Presidents Obama and Trump, overseeing 400 daily meals to the President, Vice President, and Senior Staff members as well as handling all the logistics for feeding the First Family,
foreign heads of state, and dignitaries. Highlights during this time included coordinating service for President Trump and his family for his inauguration and planning an annual Mardi Gras menu. Morel said he was part of an inner circle tasked with “all of the moving parts and problem solving that were a part of our day to day.” He said he treasured his time at the nation’s Capitol, and the travel that was part of it. During his stint with POTUS, Morel spent time in Vietnam, saw both Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima, walked along the Great Wall and visited the Forbidden City in China. “Taking my daughter and wife to see the Oval Office, serving two great men in the White House— these moments were just incredible, and it really made my love of this country grow.”
Retiring to the Parish But after a visit home one day, Morel made his decision to retire. “I remember—before I went to the White House—dropping Grace off at school for third grade, and next thing you know, I’m dropping her off as an 8th grader. It just hit me. I knew it was time to come home.” Home now means supporting his wife in her role as the principal of Lacoste Elementary, being active in his daughter’s life as a high school student, and overseeing the school district’s food services for the St. Bernard Parish Public Schools. He said, like all new positions, this one has its unique set of challenges—like the federal regulations inherent in school nutrition programs. Morel said managing twelve kitchens at schools that span twenty miles across the parish and feeding 8000 children breakfast, lunch, and snacks are now part of his routine. He is confident that “we will make it work.” When he reflects on his life and naval career, he is thankful for the men and women he served with, especially Willie Moore—his mentor and lifelong friend. He also knows none of his experiences were possible without the love of his people in The Parish. “I do not think I would have served our country for more than 21 years if it was not for all of them, especially my wife, daughter and family. I am also grateful for the opportunity and privilege to serve the best country in the world. But more importantly, I am very thankful to be able to share my story and career in the Navy because there are a lot of my fallen brothers and sisters who are no longer here to tell their stories.”
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Art for Joy
by Michelle A. Nicholson
Fashion Historian Teaches Sewing
Recognizing Roots at The Battlefield
he Commemoration of the Battle of New Orleans is one of the biggest events in St. Bernard each year. Hundreds of reenactors, thousands of school children, and as many as 10,000 tourists flock to the parish to participate in living history. With military marching, musket and cannon fire, and demonstrations of weaving, sewing, and cooking over an open fire— it is an exciting and educational event. And it is local scholars like Amanda Stedman who make it all possible.
Stedman is the Historical Education Intern at the Chalmette Battlefield and National Cemetery. Throughout the fall season, she works with volunteers as they practice for the commemoration, held on the weekend of January 8. Many of these volunteers are Chalmette High JROTC students who participate in the Recognizing Our Roots (ROR) program. In
I want to encourage passion and creativity in people — to connect people to their local history and to each other. – Amanda Stedman
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fact, Stedman herself discovered her passion and began her career path this very same way. “I was in JROTC and Recognizing Our Roots throughout high school, and I am still in contact with people who were in ROR with me, some of whom have become my best friends,” Stedman said. “After high school, I attended Loyola University New Orleans and continued my love of history there,
taking a fashion history course, and ended up giving occasional guest lectures on 18th-19th century clothing. I studied abroad in Paris and attended the open house at Parsons Paris— where I realized that I could become a fashion historian.”
“I teach people skills that have largely been forgotten in this day and age—how to make clothing and food from scratch,” she said. “In my work, I want to encourage passion and creativity in people—to connect people to their local history and to each other.”
Stedman spent two years pursuing her M.A. in Fashion History and Archive at Parsons Paris— working under the guidance of Jessica Glasscock, curator at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, as a Public Relations intern; teaching undergraduate classes; and even working with and doing an exhibition on a dress own by Empress Joséphine, wife of Napoleon Bonaparte.
To become a part of the living history programming at Chalmette Battlefield, visit the park during business hours or contact their Community Volunteer Ambassador, Grant Fletcher, at grant_fletcher@ partner.nps.gov. Keep updated with events at the park, follow the Chalmette Battlefield on Facebook and Twitter, and visit their website!
After graduation, Stedman brought her knowledge and skills back to the Battlefield to support the ROR program that started her on her path. Beyond giving lessons in sewing and historical fashion reproduction for students in the ROR program, she hosts weekly sewing circles on Saturdays from 1-4 pm.
A native of St. Bernard Parish, Michelle A. Nicholson is a writer, editor, teacher, and proud alumna of Andrew Jackson Magnet High, Loyola University, and the University of New Orleans.
Muster the Troops in Historic St. Bernard Parish
Experience history come to life during the Battle of New Orleans Commemoration week January 7-9, 2022. Enjoy lecture series, cannon and musket firings, period crafts and cooking, War of 1812 military drills and tactics, battle reenactments, Jackson Day Race, and wreath laying ceremonies. FOR DATES, TIMES, REGISTRATION, AND MORE GO TO tourist commission
VisitStBernard.com | (504) 278.4242
Shop Local Support “Your” #1 Sponsors:
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32 Winter Issue 2021
Holiday Guide 34
Make a Gift that Keeps on Soothing
Make Your Own Beeswax Candles
Gifts for Him
Gifts for Her
Gifts for the Kids
Vegetable-Stuffed Boneless Chicken
How to Make a Christmas Charcuterie Board
Spice Cake with Honey Cream Cheese Icing
Party with a Purpose
Holiday Snowball Cookies 33
By Dina Zelden
hen it is time to deck the halls, everyone can use a little inspiration. The tried and true holiday themes can feel tired and worn. This year, hire Mother Nature as your interior designer to create a fresh, natural look that will warm your home and your heart. First, consider the color palette. Earthy colors in muted, softer tones inspired by elements of nature will complement this decorating choice. Pine cones, cinnamon sticks, and seed pods offer brown hues. Pine boughs, eucalyptus, and other foliage provide a range of green shades. Let birch wood, as well as linen and other natural fabrics, give you a range of whites from classic to creamy. Texture is an important design element and nature offers endless possibilities. Incorporate wooden elements to add to the rustic charm and provide visual interest. Wrap
34 Winter Issue 2021
twigs in lights and arrange into star shapes to hang alone or in groups. Hollow out logs to make beautiful natural candle holders. Next, include natural fabrics. Add a faux-fur throw rug or blanket to cozy up the fireside sitting area. Wrap burlap around a wreath form, adorn with greenery, and hang with a burlap
bow to create a wreath with natural charm. Traditionally, the Christmas tree takes center stage and is a classic example of bringing nature indoors. To add a natural flair, ornaments made from twigs or twine are easy DIY projects, and a fun way to get the family involved. As an alternative,
add twinkling lights to a few branches in a tabletop vase for a festive look, no matter how you choose to celebrate the winter season. Birch wood is a lovely addition because of its clean, white hue. Consider purchasing a few logs to add to a basket or stack artfully by the fireplace.
Adding elements in small detail will make your space cozy this time of year. A bedside table or living room console is a great place to add beeswax candles. Dried fruit makes a lovely addition to a garland or window hanging. Small bowls filled with seed pods, nuts and cinnamon sticks will not only look great, they will make your home smell great as well.
Decorating this season can last all winter. With a natural palette and simple elements, there will be no need to discard the decor once the holiday has passed. Natural design can create a fresh, relaxing environment well into the new year.
make a gift that keeps on
whipped honey rose hand cream By Dina Zelden
Your friends and family will love this creamy, natural hand cream to battle the winter dryness, especially because you made it yourself! Ingredients
• 1/2 cup organic extra virgin coconut oil
Measure the ingredients and place all but the essential oil into a double boiler.
• 1/2 cup unrefined organic shea butter • 3 tbsp raw and unfiltered wildflower honey • 2 tsp organic pure vanilla extract • 8-10 drops rose geranium essential oil
Melt ingredients over medium heat, stirring to mix thoroughly. Cool completely (1 to 2 hours) in the refrigerator until the mixture becomes solid. Once solidified, whip essential oils into the solid mixture with a hand mixer. Transfer to your glass jar for storage.
36 Winter Issue 2021
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Beeswax Candles Make Your Own
By Dina Zelden
Enjoy making beeswax candles to decorate your home or give as gifts. Beeswax burns longer, drips less and smells wonderful, naturally. This craft is simple enough for the whole family to join in the fun.
Supplies: • Beeswax sheets (colored or natural) • Cotton wick cut to height of candle, plus approximately 1/2 inch to light • Unfinished natural wood slices, round, with bark (approximately 4 inches, depending on candle size) • Bits of pine bough, rosemary, or other greenery • Paper ribbon or twine • Small natural elements • Candle putty • Hot glue or other adhesive Instructions: Begin by having an adult cut the beeswax sheets to the desired height of your candle using a sharp knife. Remember that the length of the sheet will determine the diameter of the candle, so adjust accordingly. Place cotton wick along the HEIGHT side of the beeswax sheet and gently press into the wax. Bend about 1/8 inch of the wax around the wick. Begin rolling tightly to secure the wick, as this will be the center of your candle. The wax will soften with the warmth of your hands, but you may speed the process by applying the heat from a blow dryer on the lowest setting. This is the only time you need heat and a little pressure. Once the wick is secure, roll gently so as not to compress the honeycomb pattern. Keep your rolling even and straight to the end of the sheet or until you reach the desired thickness. Trim any excess. Gently press the edge to finish the candle. You may use your thumb or nail to make a fairly smooth edge.
38 Winter Issue 2021
Adhere candle to the center of a wooden disc with candle putty. Adorn with greenery, ribbon, or twine tied into a small bow and secure with adhesive such as hot glue, taking care not to melt beeswax. You may add small natural items such as mini pine cones, acorns, or star anise pods.
Celebrating 29 Years Thanks for your support
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HIM By Dina Zelden
In addition to camping accessories, the outdoorsmen in your life will find this COOLER with a retro flair both charming and practical.
This year, by considering the hobbies and interests of the men on your list, you can f ind a gift they will enjoy year-round. Consider his passion, then choose a fun and trendy gift to match. For the travel enthusiast, an RFID-BLOCKING WALLET or passport holder ensures that his personal financial information will be safe.
For the mixologist, stylish cocktail shakers and other bar accessories are sure to please. Try a FLAVORED BOURBON WHISKEY for a fun twist.
40 Winter Issue 2021
This stylish and sleek BEANIE allows him to enjoy his favorite tunes on the go without the bulk of headphones headphones.
Whether he does hard workouts or just works hard, any guy can benefit from a MASSAGE GUN with settings for relaxation or deep tissue massage.
Grooming Under New Management For Appointment, Call Belinda 504-210-7823
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Immune Builder Orange
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With This Coupon
any size $100 OFF smoothie
Some restrictions may apply. Valid only at particpating locations. Excludes Extras and Enhancers. Not valid with any other offer. Not valid on 32oz smoothies on Fridays. Must surrender original coupon to receive offer. Photocopied or altered coupons will not be honored. limit one per person. No cash value. Sales tax extra. ©2021 Smoothie King Franchises, Inc.
OFFER EXPIRES: 12/31/21
CHALMETTE 3344 Paris Rd.
any 32oz. OR $ 00 OFF larger smoothie
Some restrictions may apply. Valid only at particpating locations. Excludes Extras and Enhancers. Not valid with any other offer. Not valid on 32oz smoothies on Fridays. Must surrender original coupon to receive offer. Photocopied or altered coupons will not be honored. limit one per person. No cash value. Sales tax extra. ©2021 Smoothie King Franchises, Inc.
OFFER EXPIRES: 12/31/21
CHALMETTE 3344 Paris Rd.
Buy 1 Smoothie, Get 1 Free
(2nd smoothie must be of equal or lesser value) Some restrictions may apply. Valid only at particpating locations. Excludes Extras and Enhancers. Not valid with any other offer. Not valid on 32oz smoothies on Fridays. Must surrender original coupon to receive offer. Photocopied or altered coupons will not be honored. limit one per person. No cash value. Sales tax extra. ©2021 Smoothie King Franchises, Inc.
OFFER EXPIRES: 12/31/21 $5 Bonus Card valid January 1–February 28, 2022. Valid only at participating locations. No cash value. Sales tax extra. ©2021 Smoothie King Franchises, Inc.
CHALMETTE 3344 Paris Rd. 41
Want to WOW the women on your gift list this year? From mom to best friend we have great ideas that are sure to please.
• Bill and Ted Face The Music • The Dirt • Deepwater Horizon • Terminator Genisys • Filthy Rich
• Secrets of Sulphur Springs • Love Birds • The First • Tell Me Your Secrets • Your Honor
HER By Dina Zelden
COMFY AND COZY Luxurious pajamas, fuzzy slippers, and weighted blankets are good options to keep your loved one happy. The CozyChic Lite Circle Cardigan by Barefoot Dreams is a gift that will go seamlessly from working at home to curling up on the couch.
IN THE KITCHEN Consider one of the latest culinary accessories for your favorite home chef. Gift cards to a meal kit service, such as Hello Fresh or Purple Carrot, combine the fun of preparing your own meal with the convenience of ingredients and instructions delivered right to your doorstep. The new Always Pan does the work of eight pieces of cookware from fry pan to steamer and is sure to be a hit. FIT AND ACTIVE Whether they workout at home or in a gym, your favorite fitness junkie can always use items to fuel the next workout. Try combining fitness and technology with this JBL portable waterproof speaker that will take hiking, camping, or relaxing by the pool to the next level.
42 Winter Issue 2021
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s t f i G r KIDS fo
lden By Dina Ze
Bring the holiday cheer in a big way with these great picks for the kids on your list. Art enthusiasts love to make things. Parents don’t like the mess. Make everyone happy with these clever toys that keep the creativity contained.
Make-believe or role play is a great way for kids to use their imagination. Older kids can try their hand at running a food truck and youngsters can try this smart checkout by Little Tykes that will provide hours of entertainment with its real interactive conveyor belt and scanner.
Kids always love when the whole family joins the fun. Clack! is a magnetic stacking game for younger children, but older siblings as well as parents will gladly join the fun. Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza is a fast card game with some fun twists.This will be a go-to for game nights all year. 44 Winter Issue 2021
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
ring u t a e F w No
from all of us to all of you
Holiday Hours Christmas Eve • 6am - 2pm Christmas Day • Closed New Year's Eve • 6am - 2pm NEW YEAR'S DAY
@ Two Fish Books
Cafe Aquarius 2101 Paris Road Chalmette
PAR3 RESTAURANT 1530 E. Judge Perez Drive Chalmette
Monday - Closed, Tuesday 10-7, Wednesday 10-5, Thursday 10-5 Friday 10-5, Saturday 9-5, Sunday 9-3
s s e l e Bon n e k c i Ch By Nellie Palmer
INGREDIENTS: • One whole chicken–deboned • 1/2 cup each diced red, green and yellow peppers • 1/2 cup diced yellow squash or one medium squash • 1/2 cup diced zucchini or one medium zucchini • 1/2 cup diced mushrooms • 1/2 cup diced onion • 1 tbsp minced garlic • Olive oil • Fresh rosemary • 1 tbsp cumin • 1 tbsp paprika • Salt and pepper • Butcher twine
46 Winter Issue 2021
DIRECTIONS: Sauté all of the diced vegetables and garlic in olive oil, seasoned with thyme, rosemary, paprika, salt and pepper. Wash and dry the chicken. Rub entire chicken with salt and pepper. Place sautéed vegetables inside chicken cavity. Fold skin over and lace the cavity closed. Rub outside of the chicken with olive oil, paprika, cumin and rosemary. If you want a spicy outer crust, add some cayenne to the rub. Place the chicken on a roasting pan with a rack. Roast at 350 degrees for approx. 90 minutes until stuffing reaches 165 degrees and chicken is cooked through.
DEBONING A WHOLE CHICKEN
sing a sharp paring knife, start by removing the wishbone. This makes it much easier to separate the breast meat from the bones. Separate the wing from the body at the joint but leave the rest of the wing bones intact. Carefully work your way around the chicken with the tip of the knife pointed inward toward the chicken, so you don’t puncture the skin. (If you do puncture the skin, don’t get too upset. You can use some meat to cover the hole or seal it with a toothpick.) Separate the thigh from the body at the thigh joint, then scrape the meat away from the bone. Use a heavy chef’s knife to break the leg at the ankle and pull out the bones. Season the chicken inside and out before stuffing.
Use this QR Code to watch a video on deboning a whole chicken without cutting the skin.
How to Make
a Christmas charcuterie board By Nellie Palmer
STEP 1 • The Platter To start, you need a foundation that goes with the rest of your holiday theme. This year, our theme is “down to earth” so we are going with an all-natural wood theme. You can use a rustic cutting board, or any wood server you can find. Don’t forget the appetizer plates and cheese knives for serving. STEP 2 • A rounded selection of cheeses that are popular with most palates Soft cheeses; brie and goat, semi-soft cheeses–Gouda and cheddar; hard cheeses–aged Gouda, Parmesan, Pecorino. Since we are serving this for a holiday celebration, we will add cheeses that may have a Christmas theme, like cranberry covered cheese. STEP 3 • A curated selection of meats Prosciutto, salami, paté, turkey, ham pepperoni and bacon are our favorites. STEP 4 • Condiments allow guests to build a crostini or sandwich Jalapeno mustard, pepper jelly, fruit spreads, honey, and hummus are a good start. STEP 5 • Fruit, nuts and olives are a great way to cleanse the palate Favorites are grapes, berries, figs and apples wrapped in prosciutto to keep them from turning brown, along with almonds and a variety of nuts. Because olives are pickled with brine, place them in a small condiment bowl to keep the vinegar from your other dry items. STEP 6 • Crackers and Bread These are the base of your tray. Guests will use these to pile their lovely concoctions of goodness. We added Christmas and holiday–shaped crackers and even a few gingerbread cookies. Top the tray off with rosemary garnish and candy canes for decoration.
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Christmas Spice Cake with
Cream Cheese Icing Boost Your Favorite Box Yellow Cake
By Jessie Gray
Ingredients • 1 box Betty Crocker Supermoist cake mix • 1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding • 3 eggs • 1/2 cup pineapple juice • 1/2 cup melted or softened butter • 2/3 cup Triple Sec liqueur • 1 tbsp Madagascar vanilla For the Icing • 16 oz cream cheese • 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar • 1/4 cup Triple Sec liqueur • 1 tsp vanilla Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using two 8” or 9” cake pans, cut parchment circles to fit and spray with cooking spray. Mix all cake ingredients in mixer. Pour equal amounts of batter in each pan.
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Bake for 25 minutes, then test with a toothpick for doneness. If not done, check every five minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Once cakes are done, let cool on rack. Invert cake pans on cooling rack. Brush bottom of each cake with Triple Sec. Use the remaining mixture for the icing. For Icing: In a mixer, blend cream cheese, vanilla and Triple Sec. Mix until well blended. If the texture is too loose, add corn starch until the consistency of whipped butter.
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y t r a P
with a Purpose By Dina Zelden
1. Select a Recipient
This may be the most difficult part since there are many worthy and admirable causes. Choose a charity close to home or close to the heart, whether it be an animal shelter, nursing home, or military troops. Everyone can benefit from being shown a little extra love.
2. Choose an Activity Find an activity that will be fun for your guests, while being beneficial to the recipients. One idea is to have guests bring two dozen cookies, bought or homemade. Guests can enjoy samples, while the spare dozens will be delivered to an elderly facility or other location that accepts baked goods. Be sure to check ahead of time. You could arrange for guests to prepare care packages for the homeless or write holiday cards to send to military troops away from home. Another option is to ask guests to bring a re-gift or gently used item, wrapped and ready to “sell”. At the party, auction the gifts to the highest bidder, with all the proceeds being donated to your charity of choice.
3. Party! Plan the time of day that best fits your chosen activity. Add food and a festive atmosphere that complete the theme. Breakfast on the weekend can include a pancake bar with all the toppings. Lunch may be a sandwich board, while dinner can be light with appetizers and cocktails. Kid-friendly cookies and cocoa would be a fun way to gather families. Keep it simple and focus on the reason behind the gathering. With a purpose to the party, guests will be able to both enjoy and share the warmth and good cheer of the season.
54 Winter Issue 2021
Holiday Snowball Cookies By Jan Golden
nowball cookies are a combination of ground pecans, lots of butter, flour and a bit of sugar. The cookies are more like shortbread but are extremely rich from the butter and the nutty pecans. These cookies are so easy and quick, they are perfect to make with the kids and grandkids. Ingredients • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature • 1/3 cup sugar • 2 tsp Madagascar vanilla • 1/4 tsp salt • 2 cups all purpose flour (we like King Arthur’s flour) • 2 cups toasted pecans, finely ground • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
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Directions • In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, vanilla and salt. • Turn the mixer on low and gradually add the flour until all incorporated. • Stir in the nuts and mix until combined. • Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. • Place powdered sugar in a wide rimmed bowl • Once dough is well chilled and stiff, use a melon baller to scoop balls. • Roll balls in your hand until round and dip in powdered sugar. • Place balls on cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.
• Bake 12 to 15 minutes. Do not over bake. • Cool cookies for 5 minutes. While cookies are still warm, gently roll in powdered sugar again. (they will be slightly soft, so try not to misshape your cookies) • Let cookies cool completely. Once cooled, roll the cookies in the powdered sugar a third time. • Place the cookies in a decorative bowl and display on table for your next party.
Shopping List Spouse ______________________ ______________________
In-Laws ______________________ ______________________
Children ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________
Grandmothers ______________________ ______________________
Mother ______________________ ______________________ Father ______________________ ______________________ Sisters ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Brothers ______________________ ______________________ ______________________
58 Winter Issue 2021
Grandfathers ______________________ ______________________ Aunts ______________________ ______________________ Uncles ______________________ ______________________ Cousins ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Nieces ______________________ ______________________
Nephews ______________________ ______________________ Friends ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Neighbors ______________________ ______________________ Bosses ______________________ ______________________ Co-Workers ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Teachers ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________
School Staff (cafeteria, bus, etc.) ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Household Helpers (housekeeper, babysitter, etc.) ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Service Workers (mailmen, garbage collectors, etc.) ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Clergy ______________________ ______________________ Pets ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ ______________________
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Owners Michael Ginart Jr., John C. Ginart and Ruston Pritchard
2114 Paris Road • Chalmette, La 70043 Phone: 504-271-0471 • Fax: 504-271-6293 60 Winter Issue 2021
Countdown to Wednesday
Buy Advent Calendar
Shop local for unique gifts
Put up Christmas tree
Make your nature wreath
Hang wreath on front door
Volunteer to ring the Salvation Army Christmas bell
Bake Christmas cookies
Watch favorite Christmas movie
Mail Christmas cards
Visit a live nativity
Attend a Christmas concert
Have cookies delivered to a nursing home
Donate goods to your local food pantry
Call someone who lost a loved one
Make a gingerbread house
Pay for a stranger’s coffee at coffee shop
Go to a holiday tea
Go Christmas caroling
Drive to look at Christmas lights
Make Hot Apple Pepper Jam
Make DIY Christmas stockings with friends
Visit a holiday art market
Skype with out of town family
24 Pray for loved ones to be blessed in the new year 61
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