We interrupt out Tour de Barbecue as we move from Richmond to Eastern North Carolina for a special bulletin: an update on New Orleans by Myra from Michael Boyd, the New Orleans Food Maven. Here’s Michael’s report on the Alligator Bites basket and the Oyster Po-Boy:
The Alligator Bites basket. First off, it’s a big portion. Maybe a little over breaded, but that breading was very well seasoned and nothing — not the alligator itself or the frying — was greasy, and I typically think of alligator as greasy chicken. This is really impressive. The girls would love it. Basically it’s what little chicken tenders wish they could be.
[Publisher’s note: The basket could really use some of Myra’s sensational remoulade, as could most things in life: see below. Now back to Michael.]
The Oyster Po-Boy: everything about it was excellent. I loved the oysters: breaded well, seasoned well, and not over fried, but still soft and oystery. The lettuce: lots of places do either whole leaf or shredded; this was a 1/2” chop. It was perfect, and the tomatoes were so fresh. The seasoned mayo — the remoulade — was something I could drink.
[Publisher’s note — I put that in bold italics because it really is true. That is a sauce of greatness. Back to Michael.]
If there’s a weak spot compared to one of the great a New Orleans oyster Po-Boy shops — Domilise’s, say, or Crabby Jack’s — it’s the roll. Rolls in this area are softer than, say, a Leidenheimer roll. Basically it’s a soft Italian roll, whereas a real NOLA roll is a unique bread, with a light crispy crust and velvety soft on the inside. It’s like French bread made by angels. This roll needed more crust because NOLA “French Bread” is more a combo of a hard and soft Italian roll. Some people do ship Leidenheimer rolls up to this area, but that is a tough proposition because the rolls are only fresh and perfect for about 10 minutes. New Orleans Po-Boy shops have the rolls delivered several times a day so they’re sure to be fresh. The rolls’ unique quality comes from the lack of fat and sugar, which act as preservatives for breads, and from the cooking itself. It would be nice if there were a commercial bakery that could come closer. There’s a business opportunity for someone with money to spare.
That said, this is the best oyster Po-Boy around. I could eat that oyster po-boy every day and not be upset. It was killer good. And Myra is so nice!
There you have it. Two more reasons to visit New Orleans by Myra — as if you needed them. Hop in your car and head to Lusby.
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