As a native Alabamian who has lived in New York City for close to fifteen years, I sometimes get homesick for the food that was all around me where I grew up. Birmingham isn't part of the Cajun country that's famous for gumbo, boudin, and po' boys, but they were still pretty easily available, and I've had a hard time finding the Southern food I grew up on executed well, without fuss, in Brooklyn. That is, at least, until a little shop called The Gumbo Bros.
When I was down in New Orleans earlier this month for Mardi Gras, I ate a whole lot of red beans and rice. The week before Mardi Gras is always a blur of parades, parties, costumes, and king cake. I was always grateful when a friend or a friend of a friend offered up a hot bowl of rice with a pile of red beans and sausage on it.
Brunch, by most reckonings, is the gayest meal.
We’ve all found ourselves in the post-dinner situation of realizing we made too much rice. While heartier chicken soup, more textured vanilla pudding, or homemade fried rice are wonderful uses for excess cooked rice, consider making calas.