Quick Bites: Italian Creole

Quick Bites:  Italian Creole

On this week’s episode, we sit down with Loyola University history professor Justin Nystrom to explore the influence that Sicilian Americans have had on New Orleans foodways. Surprisingly, that influence didn’tbegin with the heavy influx of Sicilians who populated the city in great numbers during the late 1880’s. Those rural Sicilians made their mark on the French Market and created the sandwich we know as the muffalatta.   Actually, the first wave of Italian immigrants were urban dwellers who arrived on our shores in the 1830’s and became wealthy importers and restaurateurs.  Who knew that Commander’s Palace was actually founded by the son of an immigrant from Ustica whose father had Americanized his surname from Camarda to Commander? Or that those same Ustican immigrants were important members of the Southern Yacht Club – taking their leisure racing sloops on Lake Pontchartrain?  Not exactly the image you might have in your mind of our Sicilian immigrants.

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Au Revoir, Ms Ella.

Au Revoir, Ms Ella.

Au Revoir, Ms. Ella

 

There will only be one Ella Brennan.  For over seven decades, the matriarch of the Brennan clan influenced and elevated American hospitality like no other.  On Thursday, May 31, 2018. Ella Brennan passed away in her Garden District home surrounded by loving family.

 

In the spring of 2015, Ella welcomed the Louisiana Eats team into her home for a conversation about her life and thoughts on the restaurant industry.  In this Louisiana Eats podcast, we’re remembering the unmistakable grand dame and listening once again, to Ella Brennan, in her own words.

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