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New Orleans French Quarter Festival

New Orleans French Quarter Festival

Quest for the Fest - Sn 1/Ep 3Quest for the Fest - Sn 1/Ep 3

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In New Orleans, Amy is at the French Quarter Festival taking in a little jazz and a lot of Cajun fare.

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- Hey everybody, what's up? I'm Amy Shuster, and I'm excited to be here in New Orleans for the French Quarter Festival. They say that the music and the food here are the heartbeats of the city. And I'm so excited to explore and see what it's all about. Let's do it. - [Amy] Come with me to discover festivals big and small from all across the globe where people indulge their senses in a celebration of local treats and time-honored traditions. You with me? Let's do it. There's a big ole line over here. People going to go eat. Let's go checkout the jazz breakfast. I'm gonna go see what's up. - [Amy] If you've never been to New Orleans, Mardi Gras might be the first thing that comes to mind, but there's a whole other side to this vibrant city laced with food, music and heritage. And every April, it all gets rolled into one great big party at the French Quarter Festival. New Orleans is known around the world for their savory cuisine, but there's one food here that no other place on earth can claim. And that's a po' boy sandwich. Smells so good. What do we have right here? - We're known for our sausage po' boys. Vaucresson Sausage Company. It's over 100-year Creole sausage company, and my grandfather started around 1899. - [Amy] Awesome. - We use a French technique of Paul boiling our sausages to get 'em cooked all the way through. And we've put them on the grill. - [Amy] Beautifully. - Makes the casing tender. - A great caramelizing on the outside. Bite real nice, and it'll be juicy on the inside. Our Creole hot sauce is just, is our staple. And it's got a nice little after kick of pepper. But it's a real-- - It's not gonna knock me out? - It's not gonna knock you out. - I'm not gonna be on the floor? - It might make you go get a beer. - What goes into the Creole cuisine that makes it Creole? - We have a lot of different cultures that have settled in this area. Creole cuisine is a mixture of French influence, Spanish influence, as well as African, Caribbean and West Indian. And it's truly just a blanketing of flavor when it comes down to Creole cooking. - Smells so good. - Po' boy making time! We got, oh, here we go. - I'm hungry, let's do it. - Alright. We've got po' boy bread. We put a little tomatoes on here. - K. - We put one of these nice caramelized lakes of sausage on here. We're gonna put a little mayo, and then we're gonna get a little Creole mustard. I'm gonna get one 'cause I'm not gonna let you eat alone. - No. - Not alone. So we're gonna get one ourselves. Alright? So here, we're give you this one. - Yes. - Alright. - Mm. - And that spice, I tell ya, agh. You got to like it, it clears the sinuses. - Mhm. - And if you're a singer it helps you get that first note out. Yeah, oh good, mm. - A sandwich that makes you sing, I'm all for it. Yeah don't mind us, we're just gonna be-- - Yeah we're just gonna eat. - Eating. - You can watch us though. - Cheers, thanks. - [Amy] Sausage po' boys aren't the only game in town. This is a BLT with fried shrimp. So you know, awesome. - [Passerby] Best sandwich in the world. - Yeah hell yeah. Going in. Oh yeah. It's really yummy. So good, mm. - [Amy] Believe it or not, I still have room for another po' boy. This one's all about Cajun. - Okay so I'm in the kitchen with chef Volea. He's gonna show me how to make a smothered rabbit Cajun po' boy. - [Volea] That's right. - Awesome. I'm so excited. - Alright. - So what's our first step. - Well first of all you've got to add bacon. 'Cause everybody love them, so bacon. - [Amy] You never have too much bacon. - Never, no. The idea is that want to get this crispy. - So after the bacon is nice and juicy and crispy, what do we do next? - We're gonna start building up our flavors by adding a rabbit, a little pork. - Going in, it's all going in. - Now gonna season it. Never be with the seasoning. - Secret seasoning, ooh. - Uh pairing this off a little bit more. - K. - So look, I'm gonna add onions. - Okay let's do it. - We'll throw that in there. - Onions, going in. - Oh yeah, throw em all. So right now, we're gonna add a little chicken stock. - K. How much? - Agh I don't know. Throw that bad boy in. - Okay. Tell me when. - Agh. Keep, keep, keep, keep going, keep going. 'Cause that's gonna make our gravy. - Smells so good. - I love that, I never get tired of it. - I can smell the garlic and the onions, for sure. - Never get tired of it. - [Volea] Now this is three hours. - That's it. That's all that goes in. - [Amy] Voilà. - [Volea] And that's what we grew up on. - [Amy] Wow. - [Volea] What we do is we do a little Cajun coleslaw. - [Amy] Okay, yeah. - [Volea] And do the little bite. - [Amy] The spice. Voilà, behold. Mm, that's tasty. - [Amy] That's really good. - [Volea] Yeah. - [Amy] Thank you, chef. - Alright. - Aw man. - Thank you. - You guys, real good. - [Amy] Creole and Cajun, po' boys and sausages. You know the only thing missing from my day is a cocktail. I'm sure that's on the horizon, but first I booked a dance lesson with Chance, one of New Orleans' best swing dance teachers. Time to bust a move. - Swing is kind of an umbrella term for dancing. There's actually many, many different swing dances. - Okay. - There's east coast swing, west coast swing, - West coast swing. Charleston, Balboa, Shag, shag. - Jitterbug. - Jitterbug is actually not a dance. - Oh. - The jitterbug is a dancer. Like I'm a jitterbug, you're a potential jitterbug. - I'm a jitterbug. - The dance that people call jitterbug is actually east coast swing. We're gonna do just basic six-count swing, and a little bit a lindy hop. - Okay, awesome. - Alright? - Let's do it. - Cool. So basically it starts like this. It starts back on your right leg, and it goes rock step triple. - [Amy] Oh, oh there's a triple there okay. - [In unison] Rock step triple, triple, rock step triple, triple. - [Amy] Gotta count it out. - Rock step triple. - Okay. - No you got it. One two triple. - There we go. I'm getting the hang of it. - Triple. - [Amy] Alright guys, we've got char-grilled oysters with some kind of yummy Parmesan cheesy topping. I'm told I'm supposed to scoop it up and put it on the bread. So that's what I'm gonna do. Am I doing this right? Alright, going in. Brining, salty. The butter sprinkled with some kind of cheesy bits. - [Amy] Okay, when it comes to food, New Orleans does not mess around. But to eat these guys, I'm gonna need some help. I don't even know, wait what's it called? - It's a crawfish boil. - [Amy] Crawfish boil. - [Guy In Purple] We do a little crawfish. - And it's so massive that I needed to grab a local to help me eat it because I don't even know how to begin. - You're gonna be okay. You're gonna be okay. - How do you even eat this? - Alright so what we're gonna do here, grab a, grab the big guy right here, right here. - [Amy] Okay. Aw he's so cute. - So yeah. - I wanna to eat him. - We're gonna rub the head right here. So you got the head and you got the tail. - [Amy] Yep. - You're just gonna grab it and you're gonna twist it. - [Amy] Ah. - And we're gonna take that tail and we're gonna pinch it just a little bit. You hear it crack? We're gonna just peel it just like that. Just ever so softly. - [Amy] Voilà. - You're gonna cheers. - Cheers. That's it. Ooh. - [Guy in Purple] You're not done yet though. In the head you got all the seasonin' and the juices and the fat. And you're gonna-- - [Amy] And then we suck it out? - And you're gonna suck all that juices out. - Okay, I'm scared. Alright I'm going for it. - [Guy in Purple] It's gonna be delicious. You get a little flavor, you get a little juices. - There it is. - There you go. - [Guy in Purple] The tails are the meat, but the real flavor's in the head. - [Amy] There's nothing better than having a skilled local teach you the tricks. The French Quarter Festival's got soul. There's music around every corner, the food is steeped and traditioned. And the people are sweet. So right now I'm headed to Loretta's who is famous for her praline beignets. And if you don't know what a beignet is it's basically like the New Orlean's version of a donut, delicious. - Hey good morning to you. - I hear this is the spot for pralines and beignets, yeah? - Oh yes mam it is. - I've heard. - We know you not from - [Amy] Yeah. - This area when you say pralines. - [Amy] Okay. - So we just love you anyhow. - [Amy] Oh yeah, awesome. - There we go. - Powdered sugar and everything. Ooh what's it filled with? - It's filled with a blend of praline combined with a special blend of cream cheese. - Okay. - Yes. - [Amy] The most delicious, right here, so good. I'm glad I stopped by, thank you. - Oh you're welcome. I can show you how to make those. - Oh really, right back here? - Yes, let's roll. - Putting me to work, alright I think I got this. - [Beignet chef] The first step is-- - [Amy] You just drop it in? - [Beignet chef] Yes. - [Amy] Okay. - [Beignet chef] Now we let them fry. - [Amy] How long are they in there? - Two to three minutes. Okay. - They're like children. - They are. - They come up when they want to. - [Amy] So what exactly is a praline? - Praline is a candy that has a French origin. - [Amy] Okay. - [Beignet chef] So New Orleans' praline is made with sugar, butter, pecans and milk. And the only thing we did differently was substitute the nuts. In France, they use almonds. We use pecan because of the region. You see how it's poofing out of the side? - Is that ready then? - [Beignet chef] They're ready, they're ready. - [Amy] Okay. - [Beignet chef] Drop in pan. You take the pipe and bag and we're going to fill. - Mm, can I try one? - Sure. - Okay. - [Beignet chef] Push it in, there you go. - [Amy] Whoa! - Yeah. - That'll do. - Alright. - Good. - I'm getting the hang of this. - That's right. You're looking good. - [Amy] Mm-hmm, I'm gonna do it. How many years you've been doing this festival? - For 37 years. - [Amy] Ooh. - [Beignet chef] Yes. - [Amy] Wow. - [Beignet chef] Love French Quarter Festival. I got the recipe from my mom who got it from her mom who got it from her mom. - Nice. Awesome. - [Beignet chef] Okay right now we take the praline icing, drizzle it on top of the stuffed beignet. - Drizzle, drizzle. - Drizzle, drizzle. - Alright. - Okay after we drizzle, we powder sugar. Voila. - Voila. - Voila. - [Amy] And this right here is magic. Sugary powdered sweet crispy fluffy goodness. Alright, you don't mind if I eat that one? - Oh no, but you still have a few more that-- - Oh I got work to do so excuse me. - Yeah you still have work to do. - Just making me work for my beignet. - Now come on, ice 'em up. You will drizzle, drizzle, that's right. You've earned your keep, girl. - [Amy] It's no wonder that people fall in love with the Big Easy. It's a melting pot of diversity, vibrant music, cultures and cuisines. This is one festival that doesn't mess around. Well guys, that's a wrap on my time here at the French Quarter Festival. I had an unbelievable time. I don't wanna go, so much fun. I hope you can join me at the next one. Bye guys.

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