During my recent trip to New Orleans, the Green Goddess restaurant was foremost on my list of places to dine. Preliminary readings informed me of Chef DeBarr’s dedication to global, as well as natural and organic, ingredients and an inspired and creative approach to food combining.
The tiny, intimate restaurant is easy to overlook because it’s located in a narrow alleyway allowing for only foot traffic. There is some courtyard dining in the alleyway and a small but ambient (read warm and inviting) interior space for dining where you are within an arm’s length of the bartender (YES!) and able to hear and smell all the frenetic activity in the kitchen.
Each and every employee is there to serve a hungry patron yet one gets the feeling they are also striving to establish a real and lasting relationship as well. Every question receives an informed and knowledgeable answer. Conversation is free-flowing and welcomed. The result is a homey feel for the single diner, a couple or large group. Everyone is welcome!
The menu is comprised of multiple pages of delicacies (including an overwhelming assortment of drinks) and alluring items making a decision into an absolute inner debate whether to order this or that or both! The choices of foods span the globe and contrast beautifully with classic Louisiana dishes all on the same page.
One of the most intriguing dishes was the Blue Corn Crepes. These are no ordinary crepes. Au contraire, these are blue corn crepes folded French napkin style with huitlacoche. What, you ask, is huitlacoche?
Good question! Huitlacoche is a rare Aztec corn fungus. Remember a fungus is also a mushroom. So this corn fungus which is a dark growth found on corn, also referred to as “smut”, is harvested and used to flavor all manner of dishes from soups and stews to quesadillas and even tamales.
To make the product more palatable to consumers, it is also referred to as a Mexican truffle. Aside from some nutritional value, it’s recently been revealed to contain large amounts of lysine and an ability to reduce cholesterol that is more valuable than that of oatmeal. Fits perfectly into my current pursuit of Superfoods.
Well, put all that aside because my focus here is really on the restaurant and this dish. So, we ordered the Blue Corn Crepes. They were folded as described in the manner of a French napkin and topped with a mushroom ragout which was a combination of wild mushrooms and brandy. The finish was an exquisite porcini salt and some butter. It was heaven on a plate!
Oh! I should mention that this was only one of several items, all of which dazzled our palates, titillated our tastebuds and made us smile all the way back to our hotel.
If you find yourself in New Orleans, this spot is an absolute must for a handful of appetizers, a lunch or a dinner. The drinks require a new article so I recommend that you go and enjoy it all for yourself!