Bayou bundle gift
Inspired By Our Earliest Revelator Days
We started thinking up plans for Revelator back in New Orleans in 2013. I had moved there the year prior, and had fallen in love with that beautiful city a few years prior to that. Our first office was in the French Quarter, in a bright pink house on St. Peter. Our little cafe with the blue door, still open for service in the CBD on Tchoupitoulas.
There’s so much to love, so much to miss, and it never gets old. The way of life in Lousiana is distinctly Louisiana, but at the same time it’s nuanced, anything buy homogenous, and made up of incredibly locally and family specific traditions
This gift bundle is inspired by our earliest days as a company, the days when I fell hard for Louisiana, and it’s perfect for anyone who feels the same. Do you know what it means…?
- Mosquito Supper Club: Cajun Recipes from a Disappearing Bayou - Cookbook by friend Melissa Marie Martin, New Orleans based Chef originally from Chauvin, the southernmost point of Louisiana.
- Filé Man: Gumbo Filé - Freshly Harvested just this past August, gathered in the old ways by Dustin Fuqua, and John Oswald Colson, in the Kisatchie forest.
- Bodum French Press - simple and easy to use, glass body.
- 1 x 12 oz bag of Petunias, our house blend coffee.
THE FRENCH PRESS
Simple and swift, brews coffee without the fuss within minutes. Carafe made of borosilicate glass; Good design doesn’t have to be expensive. No filters needed, easy to clean.
Beautifully photographed, Melissa’s recipes come to life through the telling of her own story. She “comes from a long line of women who can cook.” She’s a fisherman’s daughter. She grew up eating cold crabs and waking up to the “clanking of Magnalite pots” and the “smell of smothered okra and sweating onions.” She describes learning “to cook Cajun food by osmosis.” Cooking, and eating, fishing, and farming, all infused deeply into an old way of life. These are her mother’s recipes, her grandmother’s recipes. The food her and her family have cooked and eaten and harvested together for generations. The book is dedicated to Melissa’s mother.
Melissa restaurant is my favorite restaurant in New Orleans. Called Mosquito Supper Club, the namesake of the book. Mosquito has had a few iterations, but in the most recent years, Melissa sat one or two seatings in an intimate family style dinner, on one, long, old table, in a beautiful room, in the heart of Uptown. She would come out, talk about the recipes, maybe a bit about the state of the world, maybe what she’s been mulling over in her mind over the course of the day.
Her food is incredible. And let me tell you. It’s a real treat when Melissa has leftover oyster stew in the fridge. Simple, clean, fresh, layered, and unmistakably Louisiana.
Her recipes and writing are engaging, simple, straightforward, and easy to follow. I tried my hand at the first gumbo in the book: Maxine’s (her mom’s) Okra Gumbo. New journal post coming soon...
John Oswald Colson has been making filé practically his whole life. He inherited the knowledge and tradition from his mother. He continues her tradition of providing filé to the people of the Cane River community. His process is revered as folk art, and he is officially recognized by the state government as a Louisiana Tradition Bearer for continuing the practice of ancestral sassafras harvest and filé preparation.
Each summer, John Colson and his friend Dustin Fuqua head over to the longleaf pines of the Kisatchie forest. Beneath the green glowing understory of the pines, John and Dusty look for those delicate, wispy trees with the mitten-shaped leaves. They’re here to harvest sassafras, in the old ways, with mindfulness and respect. They don’t take too much, and they don’t strip the trees. They take only what is responsible, only receive what the forest offers.
Sassafras is the sole ingredient of filé. When freshly picked, delicately dried, and carefully ground, its fragrance is floral and botanical. Tea-like. John and Dustin’s filé is hand picked, hand dried, and hand ground in antique, well worn, wooden mortar and pestles. You cannot buy this stuff at any old grocery store. Especially not the bougie ones.
Become a part of the ##sassafrassociety today!
Learn more about Mosquito, filé and sassafras below
melissa martin mosquito podcast: https://www.splendidtable.org/story/2020/03/10/the-rhythms-of-the-bayou-melissa-m-martins-simple-intimate-louisiana-cooking