This was the first year since we moved to Ponte Vedra that we didn’t go back to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. After last year, I felt we were ready for a break; carnival on the heels of the Super Bowl victory was a tough act to follow. I don’t regret our decision to stay home this year, but we all got a little wistful over the weekend.
We built a ‘boat float’ and had a homegrown parade. It was interesting to see how the neighbors reacted- some were thrilled to see us approach, while a few saw us coming and headed back inside.
After a long day of impersonating Blaine Kern (the mast on the boat is 11 feet tall), I made shrimp creole for dinner Sunday night. I used Donald Link’s recipe, and the results were outstanding. Rather than the green bell pepper that is typical in shrimp creole, Link’s recipe calls for poblano, jalapeno, and Anaheim peppers. This ‘pepper melange’ yielded a balanced, complex product, that was more flavorful than spicy. It was by far the best creole I’ve ever had. Furthermore, the aroma that filled the house as it cooked was incredible.