New Orleans Cuisine

Brett Anderson has been the restaurant critic at New Orleans’s Times-Picayune for a decade. In addition, he writes about food for a number of other magazines and newspapers. Here are his top five favorite books about the region’s cuisine.

American Cooking: Creole and Acadian

From the fantastic series of cookbooks put out by Time-Life in the 1970s, American Cooking answers, in well-researched detail, the age-old question: What’s the difference between Cajun and Creole?

Gumbo Tales: Finding My Place at the New Orleans Table by Sara Roahen

This beautiful, heartfelt, uncheesy food memoir—an increasingly rare thing—taps the vein of emotion running through New Orleans cuisine.

Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen

Simply put, this is Cajun food’s answer to Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Commander’s Kitchen by Ti Adelaide Martin and Jamie Shannon

Cowritten by the chef of the quintessential modern New Orleans restaurant,
Commander’s Palace, this book explains how to do haute Creole at home.

The Picayune’s Creole Cookbook

While today better for reference than for instruction, it would be difficult to understand the food of New Orleans without consulting this classic book, first published in 1901.

This list first appeared in the April/May issue of Bookforum, accompanying Melanie Rehak's column on New Orleans food and Tom Fitzmorris.