Central Louisiana Mardi Gras Mambo

Welcome to our Mardi Gras ~ Bienvenue à notre Mardi Gras!

Mardi Gras is all around Louisiana and our sister states, but this invitation is to a Central Louisiana Mardi Gras Mambo Places In The Home style.

Mardi Gras

Festivities to beat the jazz band fill Central Louisiana afternoons, evenings and weekends with something Mardi Gras to do.

mardi-gras-beadsKrewe parades roll uptown, downtown, and all along the Red River replete with throws of colored beads and doubloons, go- cups (we do love a geaux-cup), and trinkets raining down to revelers below satisfying the traditional Carnival call of “Throw me something, Mister!”


Alexa Pulitzer

What’s a go-cup (that’s geaux cup in Louisiana speak) you may ask?

Not to-go cup.



a cup used to hold any beverage that one may take with them while they are out and about.

Louisiana is a festival-celebration-events driven state.   Celebrating is in our DNA.  Humidity is always in the air, ergo the need for liquid refreshment.  When out and about you can guarantee (ga-ron-tee as Justin Wilson said) it is with beverage of choice in hand.


Throw me something, Mister!

Mardi Gras in Central Louisiana emphasizes the spirit of family, friend and neighbor.


We eat, drink, decorate, dance, promenade, stroll and second line on Garden District streets of brick during the Carnival season.

This is our taste of Mardi Gras world from the Twelfth Night (feast of Epiphany) to Fat Tuesday- a living it up in Central Louisiana c’est si bon celebration.


Gray skies never rain on our parade.

We know how to adapt and simply take the party indoors.


Decorating for Mardi Gras gives me an opportunity to put my French themed decor accessories and accents on Mardi Gras parade.


The purple, green and gold colors and oval design of a traditional King Cake serves up dining table centerpiece idea.



Centerpiece inspiration is everywhere, and the colors and design of the King Cake is as good a muse as any.


Taking inventory of items around the house and those plucked from a fantastic end-of-season clearance sale last year, I spied my Sportsman’s Paradise-Gulf of Mexico-coastal collection of shells, figurines and the like.

Winter is making me blue, so any and all opportunities to inject a bit of spring into my step and/or decor are welcome.  Shells and pelicans equal spring into summer perfect.


This gold pelican figurine is 39 years old- a nugget souvenir from our college days at LSU.

The shell is an oldie but a lovely as well.


The curated side of my brain and the decorating side of my brain merged to come up with a fabulous pairing.

There’s a baby in a King Cake, and there’s a Louisiana pelican in this shell of a Carnival inspired candy dish.


Our days of letting the good times roll in New Orleans ceased in favor of the local lagniappe Central Louisiana offers.

These days, home is where the Mardi Gras celebration is.

love your style


A Taste of Home: Mardi Gras Food Edition

 A taste of Mardi Gras food is bringing home facts, food, and fun.

King-Cake-2022 (1)

One never knows when the need for a conversation starter or trivia answer round the water cooler, dinner table or game board will present itself.


Louisianians love their Mardi Gras food, and one of our absolute most delicious regional dishes came in as the state favorite.

Curious to see what sweet treat sensation is deliciously associated with what state?  Click on the image below and the magic of link love will take you right on over to “The United Sweets of America”, a fun read by Slate associate editor L.V. Anderson.

By the way, the dessert ranked number one in Louisiana is, drum roll please… Bananas Foster.

mardi gras foodSlate

Speaking of which regional sweet treat your state is known for, when the calendar points to Mardi Gras season Mardi Gras food is the topic of Carnival culinary conversation.

Legions of Louisiana Loyal are finding themselves with a hankering for a taste of sweet home Louisiana.

Phone calls, text messages and email requests for Mardi Gras food recipes come fast and furious during Mardi Gras season.

Texas Yeehaw son.

Our Missouri snow shoveling nephew.

Floridian flamingos and Don’t Mess with Texas cousins.


East Tennessean hills friends.

Chicago suburbs aunts and uncles.

What they say is true- you can take the boy or the girl out of Louisiana but you can’t take Louisiana out of the boy or the girl.

Seems the proof is in the bread pudding!

vanilla bread pudding with vanilla sauce

white chocolate bread pudding recipe

Wondering what Mardi Gras food recipes inspire the masses to phone home?

Here’s a look at the Mardi Gras food and recipe requests thus far:

Bananas Foster

This legendary Louisiana dessert is the stuff flamboyant flambé tableside preparation and presentation culinary dreams are made of.

Bananas, melted butter and brown sugar dance the dance of caramelization awaiting generous pours of banana liqueur and dark rum.

Not to be overlooked is the grand finale of flame and circumstance which showcases of the art of tableside exhibition- the lagniappe of New Orleans tradition.

Taking the top slot on our Mardi Gras food desserts menus is the recipe for my version of Bananas Foster.


King Cake

King Cake is a sweet traditional cinnamon filled coffee cake style pastry glazed with topping and sprinkled with sugar in the Royal colors of purple, green, and gold.

King Cake parties rule the Carnival season.


Tradition dictates Mardi Gras revelers love the tradition of eating this Carnival confection during Mardi Gras season.

Time honored customs reign at Carnival season, and the custom of the plastic baby baked into the cake is steeped in culinary Carnival tradition, and if you are the lucky reveler who gets the piece of King Cake with the baby you are named “King for a Day”.


With great King Cake power comes great King Cake responsibility.

Tradition dictates the “King for a Day” is obligated to host the next King Cake party.

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo 

gumbo-bowlClick on the link to view the recipe for Chicken and Sausage Gumbo 

This is the  email I received from the Canadian snowbird that kicked off this post:

Re: Mardi Gras Mambo Gumbo


Thanks for the King Cake recipe!

Could you send me your chicken and sausage gumbo and Creole~Cajun Seasoning recipes by chance?


Creole-Cajun Seasoning

1/3  cup paprika

3 tablespoons dried oregano

3 tablespoons ground black pepper

2 tablespoons dried basil

1 tablespoon dried thyme

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoons cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon granulated onion

4 teaspoons dried thyme

4 teaspoons granulated garlic

In a medium bowl combine paprika, dried oregano, dried thyme, ground black pepper, dried basil, kosher salt, cayenne pepper, granulated onion, dried thyme and granulated garlic.  Stir to combine.  Can be stored in an airtight container for up to three months.

Mardi Gras food is the taste of home.


Seasonings: A Mardi Gras Gumbo Good Time History Lesson

The parades are rolling, Carnival colors of purple, green and gold are everywhere, krewes stand dressed and ready to heed the calls of “Throw me something, Mister!”, and kitchens across the state are turning out bowls of hearty Mardi Gras gumbo by the gumbo pots full.

It’s that time of year again for the Places In The Home seasonings Mardi Gras gumbo good time history lesson and recipe feature.

Cajun Mardi Gras painting

Louisiana Cajun Mardi Gras Art Print

In rural Cajun parishes of Louisiana, costumed participants saddled up and on horseback make the Fat Tuesday run, the annual Courir de Mardi Gras.


Courir run

Masked riders will hunt, gather and produce ingredients found at local farms to put in the end of run community gumbo.


Courir Run

Gumbo recipes in our area of the world range from chicken and andouille sausage to duck to seafood full of shrimp, crab and oysters.

Bell pepper, onion and celery, otherwise known as  the Cajun holy trinity, gets the seasonings Mardi Gras gumbo ball rolling.


For a period back in the lat 1970’s, my dad got on a kick of making duck and seafood gumbo on Christmas Eve.

Good and tasty times!

He stopped cooking seafood or duck gumbo upon discovering the ultimate taste of Mardi Gras, Prejean’s Seafood Gumbo.

got gumbo

Located in Lafayette, Louisiana, Prejean’s (pronouned pray-shjohn) Restaurant is a family style restaurant serving Cajun and Creole dishes.

There is a difference between Cajun and Creole foods, but not nearly enough to matter to most.

Prejeans seafood gumbo

One taste of Prejean’s Seafood Gumbo and you’ll know what the buzz is all about.

Prejean’s Seafood Gumbo

Ingredients: (roux)

¾ cup oil

1 cup flour

Ingredients: (stock)

Kitchen bouquet (optional)

8 oz. unsalted butter

1 ½ cups chopped onions

1 cup chopped bell pepper

½ cup chopped celery

1 gallon water

4 ounces chicken bouillon granules

2 bay leaves

seasonings: 1 tsp. Salt*, black pepper, and red pepper

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 pounds peeled shrimp

1 pound crabmeat

1 pound crawfish

2 cups oysters (optional)

¼ cup green onions

*Salt should not be added until late in the simmering process, after some of the water has evaporated.  Salt is already present in the bouillon broth.


Heat oil in large, heavy pot.  Add flour slowly, stirring all the while. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until dark brown in color.  (If you are worried about burning the roux, cook to a medium dark color and add Kitchen Bouquet for extra color).

All at once, add the chopped onions, bell pepper, and celery. Continue to cook until vegetables are transparent (about 10-15 minutes).  Add bay leaves and seasonings and cook on low for 45 minutes.

Add 1 gallon of water and the 4 ounces of chicken bouillon to the roux and stir slowly until thoroughly mixed.

One minute prior to servings, add shrimp, crabmeat, crawfish, and oysters to the gumbo.

Serve in a bowl over rice.  Garnish with chopped green onion tops.

Serves 8.

Prejean’s Restaurant

The seasonings and measurements of a Mardi Gras gumbo recipe can be the best kept secret.

Mardi Gras gumbo is traditionally  served with rice.   Gumbo side pairings include saltine crackers, french bread, a boiled egg and/or a hearty scoop of potato salad.

Pass the file and a good time, it’s Mardi Gras gumbo season in Louisiana.


Carnival Season, A History Lesson and A King Cake Cupcakes Recipe

Have you heard the news?  New Orleans, Louisiana and the Mississippi Gulf Coast is throwing a Mardi Gras party!  It’s a Louisiana lagniappe-laissez les bons temps rouler-throw me something, mister atmosphere down here, and here’s a bit of background.  Carnival season begins on the 12th night of Christmas, which is also know as Epiphany.  Until Ash Wednesday, ’tis the season to celebrate Mardi Gras.  Revelers gather to pass a good time, attend masked balls, indulge in decadent food and drink offerings, parade party with the Krewes and carry on traditional traditions.


A custom still celebrated is the King’s Cake.  King Cakes are made of a cinnamon filled dough in the shape of a hollow circle, glazed with topping and sprinkled with sugar in the colors of Mardi Gras- purple, green and gold.


Purple signifies justice.

Green represents faith.

Gold denotes power.

A plastic baby is baked inside the King Cake, and tradition says whoever gets the baby in their piece of cake has to buy the next King and host the next party.


King Cakes are a diversified delicacy- baked, filled and decorated in different ways based on bakery, tradition and territory.  Different strokes and tastes for different parishes as it goes.  These Mardi Gras favorites are sold by the thousands during Carnival season.

mardi gras king cake

This recipe for King Cake cupcakes bakes up a little bite of Big Easy flavor in laissez les Bons temps rouler taste so good tradition.


King Cake Cupcakes 


1 ¼ cups cake flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
Creole Cream Cheese and Root Beer Frosting:
8 ounces Creole cream cheese, softened
¼ cup (½ stick) butter, softened
½ cup confectioners’ sugar
¼ teaspoon ZATARAIN’S® Root Beer Concentrate


Preheat oven to 350°F.  For the Cupcakes, mix flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl.  Set aside.

Beat butter in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed 30 seconds or until softened.  Add granulated sugar and vanilla; beat until light and fluffy, scraping down sides of bowl frequently.  Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Alternately beat in flour mixture and milk on medium-low speed just until mixed.  Spoon batter into 12 lightly greased or paper-lined muffin cups, filling each cup 2/3 full.

Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 10 minutes.  Remove from pans; cool completely.  Makes 12 (1 cupcake) servings.

For the Frosting, beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.  Add confectioners’ sugar and extract; beat until fluffy.  Set aside.

Make an indentation in the center of each cupcake using the handle of a wooden spoon or a straw, making sure not to break through bottom of cupcake.  Spoon Frosting into resealable plastic bag or piping bag fitted with star tip.  If using plastic bag, cut a small piece off one of the bottom corners of bag.  Pipe a small amount of Frosting into each cupcake.  Pipe remaining Frosting onto each cupcake.  Sprinkle with colored sugar, if desired.

~ recipe via Zatarain’s



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