Sunday Brunch in NOLA: The Spotted Cat Food and Spirits

We were recently in New Orleans for our friend’s wedding and decided to check out one new spot before the wedding festivities began. After doing a little internet browsing we stumbled upon The Spotted Cat Food and Spirits.  If you live in New Orleans or plan on visiting soon, be sure to check this spot out.

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I’ll admit, I go to New Orleans at least once a year, but typically more than that. However, I’ve never really explored the breakfast/brunch scene.

Located at St. Claude and St. Roch this restaurant sits in a unique area of the city. I was amazed by how many people I saw ride by on a bike. I’ll be honest, in all my years of visiting and spending time in New Orleans I rarely see people just scooting around town on a bike.

The breakfast here is good… and when I say good, I mean GOOD (and unique).

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William ordered the Huevos Rancheros with Shrimp. I got a teeny little bit of this meal because he ate it so fast! Needless to say, it was delicious.

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The Huevos Rancheros consists of sunny side up eggs, black bean puree, ranchero sauce, pico de gallo, queso fresco, avocado puree, and tortilla chips. William also added a side of shrimp to his order!

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When I saw the Miso Bacon Pancakes on the menu I was a little scared. I just didn’t understand how miso could enhance a breakfast item… But, I decided to give this breakfast entree a try and I’m so glad I did. The miso, chives, bacon, and sweetness of the syrup was a perfect combination. It’s topped with a miso butter and it’s to die for!

 

Their Miso Bacon Pancake entree consists of bacon scallion pancakes, miso garlic butter, and maple syrup. I also added a side of sunny side eggs!

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Because the spotted cat is “food and spirits” they also have an extensive bar and breakfast drink menu!

 

Next time you’re in New Orleans be sure to try out The Spotted Cat Food and Spirits:

2372 ST CLAUDE AVE #130
NEW ORLEANS, LA

 

 

Rice Bowls Part 1: Easy Sushi Bowls

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My sister introduced me to what I like call American Style Sushi while I was still in high school. She and her then boyfriend took me to a little hole in the wall spot and ordered me a tempura fried shrimp roll. I wasn’t too excited to try my sisters new favorite style of food, but because I love eating, I was up for the challenge. I’ll admit it, the shrimp tempura roll my sister ordered for me was tasty, but I didn’t really eat much sushi again until I went to college.

We love sushi in our home now. William began eating sushi in college as well and l and I’m pretty sure he and I went on a few cheap dates to sushi before we actually had any steady income or real jobs (it was the only thing we could afford in college besides free pizza and McDonalds). We’ve been eating sushi so much lately that my husband and I have officially transitioned from “Taco Tuesday” to “Sushi Wednesday” for our weekly date night. We love everything about American style sushi: the rice, the fish, the spicy mayo, crunchies, the artificially colored wasabi, and the flash fried rolls…. oh, and who could forget the crispy calamari.

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As I’ve mentioned so many times and that I’m sure I will mention again, my husband loves seafood and basically asks me to cook it every single day. One day last week as we were both heading out to work I asked him what he wanted for dinner and he replied with, “Something fishy.” In most cases when my husband asks for seafood I throw together a seafood pasta or cook an easy salmon dish but this time I knew I was going to go all out. Lately I’ve been ordering sashimi and our local sushi joint and I wanted to surprise William with sashimi sushi bowls for dinner that night!

Challenge accepted! I was going to make an amazing sushi bowl that would make even our sushi master jealous.

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The inspiration for my sushi bowl came form a few different places. Recently my sister texted me a photo of a sashimi bowl she had at a restaurant in Jacksonville, she’d also made sashimi bowls at her house earlier that week so I knew she’d be able to give me some good advice. I pulled inspiration from the bibimbap I had at Takorea, and last but not least I was inspired by the sashimi plate I’d been ordering lately at our favorite seafood sushi spot, Kuroshio!

Today I’m going to provide you with two (that’s right, two) recipes. The first is a recipe for Salmon Poki Sashimi, and the second is for Sticky Sushi Rice. These are the only components of the bowl that actually took any work to prepare, the other aspects of the dish were pretty simple.

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The key to making delicious Salmon Poki Sashimi is to start with a beautiful pice of (sushi grade*) Salmon Fillet with the skin removed. A beautiful piece of salmon has a beautiful pinkish-orange hue to it, has a nice fatty texture, and, well… it just looks beautiful. My recipe combines salmon, toasted sesame seed oil, low sodium soy sauce, toasted sesame seeds, and crushed red pepper. All of the ingredients are combined with the fish and set to marinate for a few hours before serving.

The sushi rice is pretty simple. I buy a medium grain rice and cook it according to the directions. After it’s cooked I add in a little seasoned rice wine vinegar and it’s good to go!

***If you don’t use sushi grade fish be sure you’re aware of the potential health risks of eating raw fish. Cubed and Sautéed salmon tastes amazing in this dish as well. 

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The Crispy Salmon Skin “Bacon” is made with the skin that you remove from your fillet. The skin is coated with salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and toasted sesame oil and baked until crispy. The “bacon” adds a salty and crispy texture to the bowl and it tastes absolutely delicious.

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The fun thing about “bowls” is that you can make them your own. In addition to the salmon, rice, and salmon skin “bacon” I added the following to my bowls:

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1.5 lbs salmon in combination with the rice and other ingredients serves 4.

These bowls were very filling and a hit with my husband and I’m pretty sure I’ll be adding this to the rotation of our favorite meals. Try the bowls out for yourself and let me know if you come up with any other fun bowl combinations!

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