New Orleans’ little known delicacies with grand taste

Tyler Mead, Print Arcade Editor

In the crescent city, food takes center stage. While dishes like gumbo, jambalaya or beignets tend to eat up the spotlight, some of the supporting acts have their own immense star power worthy of some long over due recognition. Plus, with Family Weekend coming up, this is your chance to impress the ‘rents with how in touch with New Orleans culture you are as of reading this article.

Shrimp Remoulade – So maybe shrimp remoulade isn’t an unknown dish, but it’s usually fighting for attention on menus with other appetizers like gumbos or fried green tomatoes. Usually served chilled, shrimp remoulade makes for a great start to any meal. Because of it’s thick mustard and mayonnaise base, it’s got just the right amount of kick to warm taste buds up for a real Cajun meal, and a refreshing departure for the more traditional French influence. Shrimp remoulade can be found in almost any restaurant worth going to in New Orleans.

Drum – Drum is a white fish that generally gets passed over for the likes of mahi-mahi or tilapia in other states. New Orleans, being adaptive as it is, has made drum a seafood staple. It’s just as light as any white fish, and usually comes smothered in rich sauces, or a rub that’s to die for. Try the blackened drum at K-Paul’s on Chartres Street for the original blackened drum recipe.

Rabbit – Rabbit proves that the cuter an animal is, the better it tastes. Since it’s a slightly more exotic option, some visitors may shy away from this tender delicacy. The Arcade suggests people give rabbit a chance. The meat is extremely tender, and chefs in the city have come up with hundreds of way to cook, fry, pan-sear and bake the meat. While rabbit isn’t only a New Orleans dish, few other regions can boast such a lucky streak when it comes to adapting a protein to local stylings. A personal favorite is the paneed rabbit at Jacques-Imo’s on Oak Street. Slightly fried, which makes anything good, and served with shrimp and a rich pasta.

Turtle Soup – Gator isn’t the only reptile New Orleans residents have for dinner. Turtle soup actually makes for a delicious and hearty appetizer. The dark broth closely resembles a beef broth, and tender chunks of turtle meat just add to the stew-like vibe of this dish. It can be a bit hit-or-miss for out-of-towners, so try the Soups 1-1-1 at Commander’s Palace on Washington Avenue. Patrons will be able to try turtle, and even if they don’t like it they still have a small bowl of gumbo and the soup du jour, so it can’t be a total loss.

To students, and parents especially: you’ll only be in New Orleans for so long. Get out there, and really get a taste of what makes this city so great. Full bellies and big smiles are a guarantee with any of these dishes.