Big Easy Dinner

What a great end to the day  :)

First – how long was today? Work felt like it would never end! Maybe it was because I knew we were going out to eat? Either way, I was happy when 5:00 finally came around.

I did not pack a snack today since I knew we would be going to dinner in town right after work – I’m kind of sorry I didn’t! I don’t know what my deal was today, but I was starving this afternoon. It was almost as if I didn’t eat lunch at all. Nick said he felt the same way, so maybe it’s because we ran yesterday? I was really happy when we finally got to the restaurant.

We went to a cajun restaurant in town called Boudreax’s and sat up on their deck upstairs.

We’d been before, but it was a long time ago and I”m pretty sure I didn’t get anything other than a salad so I wanted to try a more “cajun” dish.

abita

One cool thing is that they always have a few Abita’s on tap, since it’s a “New Orleans” style restaurant. I had an Abita Amber and Purple Haze with dinner. I loved the Purple Haze! I had never tried it before.

We started with, what else? Fried alligator with cajun mayeux.

gator

It was pretty good – I had about 2 Tbsp of little nuggets – I knew dinner was coming and didn’t want to ruin it.

catfish

I ordered the blackened catfish with corn and red pepper relish + rice and beans.

catfish

This catfish was awesome! So spicy and cooked perfectly! I love blackened fish, and this was probably the best blackened fish I’ve ever had. I ate all my catfish and I ate the beans off the beans and rice. I’m not a huge fan of white rice anymore, so I just left that.

Then – Nick and I both tried something we never had, and something I never thought I would try.

absinthe

Abinsthe.

What is absinthe, you ask?

absintheexp

If you’ve ever read “Hills Like White Elephants” by Ernest Hemmingway (one of my favorites), you’ve at least heard of it. It was a popular drink overseas in that time with all the expatriots, but was banned in the US for almost a century. I’m very glad it’s not banned any longer and we are able to try this legendary drink.

It’s so cool how it’s served, too!  It’s clear in the glass when they bring it to you –

absinthe

They set the glass under a water spout, and it’s topped with a sugar cube. They turn the spout on the ice water drips down onto the sugar cube and lets it dissolve through the utensil into the absinthe.

utensil

I’m really not even sure what to call this – this is what they set across the glass with the sugar cube on and let it drip through the openings. I thought it was so pretty, and it actually has “absente” engraved on it!

absin

As the sugar drops into the absinthe, it turns a couldy greenish-white color.

abinst

Pretty cool, huh?

nickabsin

It tastes just like you’re eating black licorice! It’s so crazy. The sugar makes it just sweet enough, but it really smells and tastes just like licorice. So…don’t try it if you don’t like licorice because you wouldn’t like this at all. I loved it and thought it was a great way to end the meal.

meabsn

Nick said if he knew how licorice-y it was, he wouldn’t have ordered it, but I loved the flavor. I wasn’t expecting it to taste how it did!

After we finished eating, we walked around downtown Blacksburg for a while, looked in a few stores, then headed home to dig into these:

cupcake

That’s right – birthday cupcakes :)

Nick let me pick the recipe I wanted and he baked them last night. I found this red velvet cake recipe and he just made them into cupcakes instead. We also didn’t use the red food coloring, so they look more like chocolate cupcakes, but they are good and the frosting is amazing.

Well…I’m already in my pj’s and ready to unwind on the couch with my cupcake and maybe a glass of milk.

Happy Happy birthday to Heather, my birthday twin  :)

Have you ever tried absinthe? If not, what’s your favorite cajun dish? Or cupcake?  :)


14 comments

  1. That blackened catfish looks incredible. And wow, fried alligator sounds interesting! I’m glad you guys had a good time. I’ve never tried absinthe, but it sounds great! I like cheesecake cupcakes, hehe

  2. Oh I love this post! I love po’boys with catfish. I love seafood gumbo and jambalaya too.

  3. Looks like you had a great birthday dinner! I’m not a big cajun food fan because I’m not good with spicy food, but I really like gumbo!

  4. Wow – you’re such an adventurous eater – good for you!

  5. I really really wanna try absinthe! sounds like quite a gastronomical adventure.
    And yay for restaurant reviews! It’s my fav! So adventurous of you to get the alligator! My fav cajun dish? Is grits cajun?
    And I don’t like cupcakes, hee >.<

  6. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRANDI!!!!!!!!!!!!

    that dinner looks fabulous!!!!

  7. That is so cool! I always associate crazy hallucinations with absinthe but I think that kind is illegal here, hehe. And I don’t know where it’s really possible to get good Cajun food in the NW… but who knows.

    Glad you had a good birthday!

  8. Oh boy oh boy, absinthe! Reminds me of Moulin Rouge :) I actually did try some for my 21st birthday when I went to a restaurant with my family. I probably won’t be swapping it out for a glass of water any time soon ;) But enough about that…more importantly, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I’m glad you had fun and can’t wait to catch up with you! I’ve missed you!

  9. I have never had absinthe, sounds interesting.

    I’m glad you enjoyed your birthday!

  10. I’m definitely trying absinthe; I love black licorice! Looks like you had a bang-up birthday:) I’m glad!

  11. What a great birthday dinner!

    I’ve never tried absinthe, I’m glad you mentioned it tastes like black licorice since I’m not a big fan.

    I LOVE Cajun food! I like ordering jambalaya or anything blackened. How’d you like the alligator?

    I think I would like almost any cupcake, but if it has chocolate I’m definitely going to go for it!

  12. I had absinthe once, but not in the traditional way with the sugar spoon or anything. When it was still banned a friend of mine brought it back from a trip to France, I believe, we actually cut a whole in a water melon and then poured the absinthe in and let it sit for a few hours, then people were doing shots of it out of the watermelon, once most of that was gone we cut it open and all took chunks, I remember the strong licorice taste, and mixed with the watermelon it was delicious!

  13. I tried it and I’m thinking it was the illegal kind. It more of a taste rather than an actual drink because I’m a scaredy cat and figured the police would knock down the door as soon as I brought the glass to my lips. I didn’t mind the flavor. If you like licorice, have you tried Jagermeister? It also has a black licorice flavor, IMO.

    I love cajun food. My favorite thing is boudin…which is basically a cajun sausage except it’s not completely made up of meat. It has rice, chicken, pork, seasonings and a few other things…then you stuff it all into a pork casing. You can grill it, broil it, or pan sear it…it’s so good. When we lived in LA, they used to have boudin shacks similar to the way we have burrito shacks in NM and TX. LA also has daquiri shacks but that’s another post! LOL

  14. I grew up in New Orleans. I’ve even been to the old Absinthe House but I’ve never tried the drink. I HATE licorice and even the smell gives me the willies. My favorite cajun disk is Jambalaya. It’s one of those foods that every cook has a different recipe so no two are the same but they’re all good.

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