The beignet. That simple square of fried dough is undeniably one of the Crescent City’s most famous foods. Few visitors leave town without a ceremonial dusting of powdered sugar that occurs with every beignet bite. Since the mid-nineteenth century, the ubiquitous donut has been sold from French Market stands accompanied by steaming hot cups of café au lait. Twenty-first century chefs and restaurateurs have taken that simple fried dough to new heights, filling them with ingredients both savory and sweet and featuring them on menus far from home.
We kick off this week’s show with Bob Hennessey, co-owner of Morning Call. After a two-year hiatus, the iconic shop is back in Mid-City – serving up beignets and café au lait just like it did 150 years ago.
Next we meet Jaclyn Robinson, of the Mo’Bay Beignet Company. She credits the successful launch of her Alabama business to divine inspiration.
Then, we stop by a warehouse in New Orleans East, where Gulf Coast Blenders works to provide most of the Crescent City’s famed beignet locations with a dry mix specially formulated for each customer’s needs – resulting in a light, fluffy beignet that is the standard in this city.
Finally, we make our way to The Vintage, a café that has built its entire concept around beignets in both Baton Rouge and the Big Easy.