Foodie Fridays

Today's outing was special. It included my two favorite guys and fried oysters. It was a trip worth crossing the Veteran's Memorial Bridge in dense fog (more easily said because I wasn't driving). 

Judice's Cajun Cafe in Bridge City has oysters worth boasting about. For $9.99 you get half a dozen nice-sized plump and juicy oysters that haven't been over-cooked or over-breaded. I would have been in seafood paradise with six oysters like this a la carte. But they were served with fresh cut French fries; the kind so good they make you forget about catsup. 


To top off such good grub, the tissue paper (or whatever you want to call it) is decorated in finials. Look back up there ^. So cute.

 (I looked up "finial" to see how to spell it but saw three different ways 1.fennial 2.fenial and 3.finial ( provided by Webster-a good choice I think...I was getting way too distracted.)

Hayden ordered the oysters too and was as pleased as I was. Judice's doesn't play around when it comes to oysters. 

Jason ordered pistolettes for an appetizer. I thought they might serve as the perfect test of the effectiveness of my acid reducer prescription. But I gave my full concentration to my oysters. Jason said the pistolettes were fresh and hot with tasty etoufee on top. 

He also had a big bowl of chicken and sausage gumbo topped with potato salad good enough that he lifted the bowl to his mouth and threw his head back, sucking up every drop. I tried to get a picture, but my phone camera only caught a blurry image...the bowl was dry in a matter of nanoseconds.   


 A big group of guys on their lunch hour, I presume, chose the steam table. And choose they did. I couldn't tell exactly the size of their plates (staring is rude), but I did see a wide variety of fried "sea stuff", boudain, ribs, veggies and cornbread overflowing on what appeared to be trays. (I might be making that up). It seemed like a lot of food. They looked like this wasn't their first Judice's rodeo. 

Great date. Great place


This was probably the last time to get out and talk with Hayden before he journeys back to "Sam", but I didn't say that. He accuses me of treating his impending leaving like a death, full of "the last this and last that".  

I don't think that at all. My heart is happy and full from a lunch date  so well spent. My stomach is too. This wasn't a last anything, but rather a first of many eating dates at a great spot. 

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My tongue is attending a little burn spot on the left part of the roof of my mouth. It's a beautiful reminder of the pizza Jason and I had for lunch.  


I'd heard about Crown Pizza from a couple of people, but I tell ya, your suggestion came without proper emotion. This is not simply a "good" place to eat. I went all the way to Italy, and back, before unreservedly saying to you now that Beaumont and Rome are duking it out for first place pizza. 

Crown pizza is located at 5535 Calder Ave in Beaumont. 

We studied the online menu before going in, so we had a game plan. Decisions of this nature should be made only after careful consideration. The menu boasts somewhere around a dozen pizzas, none of which could easily be excluded from our playing field. 

We narrowed our choices down and ordered three pizzas, the Margherita, the Shangrai La, and the BLT. 

La Margherita


Jason and I had a small tiff regarding the ordering of this beauty. I've tasted its kind. Though wonderful, I've had it many times and was hungering for something foreign to my tastebuds. Jason won, but I admit it, my tastebuds won too, being reunited with this old friend. You're familiar with its ingredients: hand crushed tomato sauce, fresh cow's milk mozzarella, hand torn basil, sea salt and olive oil. It was already half gone before I came to my senses and snapped a picture. 

Jason ordered the Shangrai La.

 He says 

"It has a combination of toppings I never imagined possible on a pizza. The basil pesto made a great flavor foundation. Whoever thought grilled brussel sprouts could be a legitimate topping." 

The Shangrai La is topped with prosciutto, serrano peppers and fresh mozzarella. My great grandmother may have never said "You don't love food, you love people" had she tried this pizza. 

I ordered the BLT

I wanted to choose the most exotic pizza on the list but this pizza had me at the word marmalade. The crust, like every pizza this awesome establishment makes, is crispy and isn't the kind you leave behind when you've eaten all the goody. This light crust is covered in some type of creamy balsamic-like bacon marmalade. Goat cheese and thick bacon are the middle layer in this fine pie. Cherry tomatoes and fresh arugula are piled on top. This BLT is the roof-of-mouth burning culprit. And I'm not sorry to say I still love it. 

These pizzas run from about nine to twenty dollars. The twenty-two dollar pizza is topped with frog legs. If you try it, or have tried it...let me know. Also make us aware of any of the other must-try pizzas on the menu. They have salads and desserts too, both of which, we were too distracted to try. We were on a pizza mission today. Mission accomplished. 



We've been in Huntsville today visiting the college kiddo. We took him out to eat at Double Dave's Pizza; the same spot we took him in fifth grade when he got into his first fight. He took his punishment and then we took him out for pizza. He fought a kid who had thrown rocks at him and a fifth grade girl (the boy had also spoke inappropriately to the girl). I called home and told my family about it. I'd taught the kid to NEVER fight. My brother, proud, made me promise I'd give him some quarters and let him play a few video games on him. Let's just say our pizza brought back memories. 

I also took Hayden to Target today.   We got what he needed and I let him fill the basket with things he wanted (like a family-sized bag of Oreos). I helped him carry his bags back to his dorm room, leaving something with him as we prepared to go.  I looked at his room trying to commit it to memory in order to carry something of him back home with us. He has his Texas flag hanging above his bed, and on his whiteboard he has a copy of his first parking ticket (and I hope the last). 

Leaving was hard again. This time was different as I realized that him living somewhere else is the new normal. "This is permanent," I said to myself.  

The thing is, I miss him. But I don't think that's the hardest part of this deal. I don't like things outside my control. 

When you have little ones you feed them, you put them to bed, you make the rules, you hold their hands.

 There are those green beans you can't get them to swallow and their bedroom that stays a mess even with your warnings of grounding them if they don't clean it up. 

But if they outgrow their shoes you run to the store to get new ones. They're never without their seatbelt. When you find out from another adult that a teacher has unnecessarily bullied your kid you go up to the school and lose your cool setting things straight (you shouldn't of course, but when you're a mom...sometimes you do). 

There gets to be a time when no manner of hand-holding or mama-bearing protects them.   You're no longer in control, much less in charge. 

The two road trips (so far) coming back home after leaving Hayden have reminded me of this. I think about him driving back home to see us. There are few passing lanes. Much of the road doesn't have cell reception. I can't tell him to watch out for that car or remind him to slow down for that railroad crossing outside of Livingston that jumps up out of nowhere. 

Today on the way home I saw a small figure standing in the middle of the highway. I yelled and Jason quickly pulled the car over.  A toddler then started to move, making his way across the highway towards an oncoming red truck. Thankfully the red truck was able to get stopped. Jason scooped the boy up whose diaper I could now see sticking out of his camo shorts. He carried him back across the highway where his dad and mom were approaching realizing what had happened.  
Minutes passed before we could even process what had just happened. God's hand was clearly on that baby. 

We think we're in control. We hope we watch closely enough and make all the right rules to keep them safe. 

But then comes a moment of sobriety. 

We're never really in control. We make decisions that impact the wellness and safety of our families and even our own lives, but we are limited. We depend on a higher power. 

Thankfully there is a higher power. 

Behold these are the outskirts of his ways, and how small a whisper do we hear of him! But the thunder of his power who can understand? Job 26:14

I think he thundered today. 

I'd be lying if I said I always live like I believe in his protection, his provision. That doesn't make his omnipotence any less real. 

 God is in control. This doesn't mean that my kids won't ever go astray. It doesn't mean that they won't get in a fight or find themselves in harms way. It means they will never leave God's watchful eye.

The eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him-those who depend on His faithful love. Psalm 33:18

I'm going to believe it until I feel it. 

Today has reminded me to open up my closed-fists and hand over what has always belonged to God. 

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Jason and I visited the Redwine's food trolly today in Winnie. This was a high mark in our "Foodie Fridays".  Jason is sharing about the perfect paninis, the tomato basil soup and the too-good-to-pass-up ice cream drinks we had. I volunteered to talk about dessert(s).  

 Jason:  You know I can't pass up a food truck when Kristi and I are out and about. Same is true for a food trailer. And you can include food carts, food buggies, and food tents. 

But now you can add a more exotic food purveyor to your list of things I can't pass up: A Food Trolly! 

 I've never seen a food trolly until today. 

Kristi and I went to Winnie to shop around at Larry's Old Time Trade Days. You can find just about anything under the sun there. We loved walking among the vendors, sifting through mounds of antiques and chatting with folks from all over this part of the country. 

The biggest attraction for us, though, was stumbling across this beauty of a Food Trolly. 

She's called The Green Molly. 

The Redwines of Nederland bought her some time back and equipped her to deliver deliciousness.  

 Pat and Trisha Redwine invited us in to see their setup and let us watch as they crafted our feast. 

The Green Molly had an eclectic feel. She started out on the streets of San Fransico years ago. She made her way by stages to South East Texas. 

The heart of their menu is the panini sandwich. 

Now let me be honest with you. When I hear of a shop selling paninis, I usually pass on by. I like paninis, but they usually leave me hungry for more. What is it with panini shops that serve undersized sandwiches? 

Put any misgivings about paninis aside when you cross paths with The Green Molly. Pat was putting together the sandwiches today. I ordered a ham and turkey on whole wheat and Kristi got the same, but on sourdough. Pat started with THICK cut bread. The sourdough was pre-cut and the whole wheat she cut herself. I could have made a meal of just the bread she put together for our sandwiches. 

My eyes really got big when she started putting together the insides of the panini. Pat piles on layers of American and Mozzarella cheese. Then came generous portions of turkey and ham. The panini grill was begging for mercy when she placed those two sandwiches in the cooker.  

 When Pat served up the paninis, the cheese was soft and warm, but not runny. The meat steamed just a little as I pried the halves apart. The panini grill puts a nice crust on the bread. 

Did I mention that they were serving these magnificent paninis with fresh made tomato basil soup? 

These paninis were perfect for dipping. The bread was sunstantial enough to soak in great draughts of creamy awesomeness. This was comfort food on steroids. 

After eating 90% of my sandwich and 25% of Kristi's, I was about to pop. 

I forgot to mention one other little detail: Trisha was working the smoothie machine today. She served us up cups of Strawberry, Piña Colada, and Vanilla Ice Cream Smooties. We tried some of all of them in addition to a Chocolate Ice Cream smoothie you can see in the picture. 

My turn

Jason has blog-hogged, leaving only the desserts to be talked about, but I can TALK about the desserts. He got a head start while I changed into my elastic shorts to be comfortable enough to write. Our lunch experience was that serious.

Key Lime Pie 

 I've accused Jason of loving coconut pie the best because the rest of the family doesn't.....which means that even if there's a whole pie, he doesn't have to share.

That's the way I feel about key lime pie. I had a slice today. It was smooth and creamy and perfectly tart served with fresh blueberries and strawberries. I sigh just thinking about it.

I was good and shared with Jason. It was easy because Trisha was standing in front of me with a slice of chocolate explosion. (Excuse my nails).

Chocolate Explosion 

 This slice of love is a crushed Oreo crust topped high with cool chocolate mousse with surprise bites of MORE chocolate. My words are inadequate. Just trust me. The chocolate explosion was an experience.

S'mores Panini 

 I've saved the best for last. When they mentioned "a chocolate sandwich" I was skeptical. But as soon as the scent of warm cinnamon bread wafted my way, I was a believer. The S'mores Panini is two slices of crusty cinnamon bread sheltering a delicious chocolate spread, crushed Oreos and melted marshmallows. I would come closest by describing it as a designer brownie, but I've never had anything like it.

I know what you're thinking. We had three desserts today.  It's really much worse if you count the ice cream drinks we had. But the heart wants what the heart wants.....and my elastic shorts are forgiving.

Jason and I write a food blog on Fridays when we're able. Send us some suggestions of local good-eats. Check out Jason's blog for these and other great posts.



Jason and I were headed to Banh Mon's food truck for lunch today.  I had my eyes peeled for future spots on Calder and Phelan. Siri announced that we had arrived at our destination. But there was no food truck. Fortunately I had spotted a joint a few blocks back called Daddio's Burger. So if Jason tries to take credit for today's lunch, he's lying. He does that occasionally.

I'm solo on the foodie blog today which means that I get to say what I want (not that I usually refrain from saying what I want). I'm actually missing our Friday afternoon post-lunch date writing from our big brown chair. Since Jason has a busy afternoon and weekend ahead I asked him for a statement about his lunch experience.

The goat burger from Daddios is for mature, discerning burger-loving pallets.

That's one way to put it.

I'm really not a burger fan. I might have mentioned that before. Just as Jason has trouble telling the difference between gray and taupe, I have a hard time seeing a big difference between a Big Mac and a Mushroom Swiss Burger from Chili's or somewhere. A burger is just a burger.

Daddios Burger has revolutionized my burger thinking ways.

Jason and I usually try to order different things (because sharing is caring). Today, one menu item jumped out, begging to be tried. We both ordered The Goat Cheese Burger.

It was a juicy beef patty served on a fresh jalepeno bun with all the fixings, topped with goat cheese and slathered in chipotle. It took me years to learn how to say chipotle. I could never remember if it was chip-ot-LE or chip-ol-TE. Today I learned that the stuff is so good it deserves the proper pronunciation. CHIP-OT-LE!!

We also had Parmesan fries with truffle oil. One basket was big enough to fill both Jason and I. They were awesome; especially doused with malt vinegar. There are several fry choices. I don't think you can go wrong. The fries are hand-cut and cooked just right. Nothing beats a good fry.

I passed up a chocolate shake and ice cream, but did splurge on half a great big chocolate chip cookie.

My single patty specialty burger costed about five and a half bucks. We spent around thirty dollars on burgers, fries, drinks and our cookie. It sounds like a lot for a burger, but this was definitely no Big Mac experience.


I told Jason I'd put his antlers up in the house if somebody would make a chandelier like this out of them. He said it would be emasculating to feminise his antler collection. What do you think? 

We saw some Nederland friends there celebrating another adoption which was just one more reason to smile while we were at Daddios.

We already have plans to go back. I think I fussed at the kids enough the last two weeks to bring their grades up before the six weeks ended today. Maybe their grades will give us a reason to go back. Maybe the fact that I didn't try the shake yet gives us reason(A good shake is so thick it hurts your cheeks and collapses the straw).

Maybe we don't need a reason.


Jason and I checked out JuJu's Cajun Crawfish in Fannett. He's mostly done the review part while I walk down memory lane. I need to walk. I ate a lot of crawfish.

A word from my guy:

Since Kristi and I started doing these Foodie Reviews we've recieved some great suggestions for out of the way eating places. We're working our way throught the list so if you haven't seen one you've told us about, it's coming.

This morning, we headed out for Ju Ju's. Check them out on Facebook and give them a Like. We heard about them just this past week.

I don't know how we've missed this spot for the past 4 years. This is legitimate South East Texas Cajun food.

Guess what they serve: Crawfish.

You can have it with Corn and Potoatoes or you can have it by itself. You can have it mild or spicy.  You can have it with one of three dipping sauces (I suggest the pink sauce).

When you cook only one thing, you better cook it well.

Ju Ju's delivers the flavor!

We ordered ours spicy. Can you feel the heat coming off of this picture?

Kristi and I always check the Internet to see when a place opens its doors. We like to eat early on Fridays to avoid the lunch rush. We didn't beat anything this morning. The locals were way ahead of us and lined up at the door. We were fortunate enough to be one of the first dozen or so patrons. Beyond that they run out of seating.

If you get there after the rush has already hit, don't go in the door.  They have a system. They'll take your phone number, send you back to your car to wait, and call you to come in when there's space. This isn't McDonald's or Burger King.

The crawfish are plentiful and BIG this year. I've heard from many that this is going to be one of the best seasons for Mud Bugs.

Check them out sometime. You can find them at:

18277 FM 365, Fannett, Tx

On a side note, if you're in Nederland on a Friday night in the Spring of the year, Butcher's Korner is serving up the Mud Bugs hot and fresh. You can dine in or have him fill up your cooler to take home with you. Check out their Facebook page as well.


Now here's my memory walk and more about JuJu's:

Today we ate at JuJu's Cajun Crawfish in Fannett, but my thoughts drifted west and back a few years to my dad's filter shop. I worked there several years growing up. His shop is still in business today manufacturing air filters that are much better than the filters you get anywhere else. While the filters are the best in the business, his little shop is a bit on the run down side. If you could see the walls, you'd see taped-up pictures drawn by employees' kids. You'd also see dates marked in permanent black ink with the number of filters made that broke the record of some other prior date. That wouldn't be only place you'd see his handwriting on the wall.

Juju's is much the same. A cardboard flat where soft drink once were stacked now serves as a sign telling customers what kind of dipping sauces are served. Other handwritten signs on copy and notebook paper remind

Keep door closed.

Do not block area.

Do not enter kitchen area.

Do not rush us.

Please. Do not rush us.

There was a window unit whose vent was stuffed underneath with napkins to manipulate the direction of airflow also reminding me of my dad and his philosophy that a permanent marker, hot glue and masking tape can fix just about anything.

You won't find a welcome mat at either place. Just like my dad's establishment has always been focused on filter-making and little else, Juju's is serious about serving good crawfish. And they succeed.

You'll find three card tables and three picnic tables inside. The "porch" has about eight chairs in a circle for those waiting to get in. It's cozy inside; so much that I was able to notice the hands of the couple beside us. I asked them how they kept their hands so clean being that my crawfish eating gets pretty messy. They told me, "Well, we eat here twice a week so I guess we've got it down". I'd say that's a good plan.



Jason sent me a text meant to provoke jealousy this past Wednesday. The text came alongside a picture of a bottled coke and a delicious-looking plate of assorted tacos. Though envious he was eating without me, I remembered why I love that man.....and tacos.

He brought me back today. Salsitas is an authentic Mexican food joint at 3297 College St. in Beaumont.

For those of you seeking the real deal, instead of describing my plate with sense-inducing language, I'm sharing ten ways I knew this place was legit.

1. A telenovela (Mexican soap opera) with a scorned woman was on the tube.

2. You can count on fresh lime wedges and homemade tortillas coming with your meal.

3. Mexican blankets pair as wall decoration and curtains.

4. There was something creepy on the menu that I wouldn't eat, suggesting that this place serves cuisine beyond the amateur list of nachos and burritos.

5. They serve six kinds of tacos including pastor and azada. (Burger King isn't the only place that lets you have it your way).

6. We had to use part of napkins to blow our runny noses caused by truly hot salsa.

7. You can enjoy your meal with an Orange Fanta or Coke in one of those tall, thick glass bottles.

8. There's a taco truck outside with Christmas lights. I can't explain, but that feels authentic.

9. You get more cilantro with your dish than you do lettuce (the non-tasty filler).

10. The menu is in Spanish and you find yourself making sure you know what a ceviche tostada is. "That is fish, right?"


Here's Jason's foodie review to go right along with my ten reasons:

I had a lunch plate of Chile Verdes on Wednesday. This stuff was good. They have all the food stuff made up and on a steam table so you can see what's fresh and what's not. Since I was there around 11:30 both times this week, everything was fresh. It was raining Wednesday so there weren't any other patrons coming through the door, but the drive through line was steady.

The Chile Verdes was tasty, they were spicy and they were filling. That's what I'm looking for in a lunch plate. I also ordered a Taco Azada. I don't even know what that is. It's some king of delicious beef thing. Don't ask too many questions. Just enjoy.

Since it's Friday, I took Kristi back with me so we could have a lunchtime date. I was just a little disappointed. Instead of ESPN Desportes playing on three TVs and turned up loud enough to drown out a freight train, they had, as Kristi alluded to above, some telenovela thing going. It was like watching Days of Our Lives, but in Spanish. It didn't take away from the ambiance. I was just sad I didn't get to hear the announcer of the soccer game yell "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOALLLLLLLLLLL!"

Anyway, I figured since the one taco I ate on Wednesday was good, why not order 4 more. I did two Azada, one Barbacoa, and one Carnitas. That's Spanish for Tasty Beef, Delicious Meat, and Heavenly Pork.

These Tacos are simple and savory. Load them up with lime juice and hot sauce and you have the makings for a face full of flavor. I'm still sweating from the red sauce. Go with the green for a milder kick, but you will still be kicked!

Kristi went out on a limb with the Cameron Tostado. When I see and old food truck, my mind doesn't immediately say, "I wonder what their seafood tastes like?" No, far from it. But she was bold today. And this was one of those days where boldness paid off!

This was sheer goodness on a crunchy shell. She let me have a bite, and when I wanted to go in for a second bite, it was already gone. Add this to your "To Get" list if you get the chance to dine-in. If you're ordering out, it might get a little messy when you try to sneak a bite on the way home. It's piled high with Pico, Shrimp, and Avocado.

She also snagged a Chicken Taco. That was about the only English thing on their menu, but it was served up with full Mexican flavor.

I don't know why we love to take pictures of our food so much. I love taking pictures of Kristi taking pictures of her food.

On the way out, Kristi took a shot of this:

I don't know what it is. I'm sad that I didn't order it. This is my reason for going back sometime in the future.

If you're in Beaumont, anywhere near 3297 College St., not far from Baptist Hospital, stop by. You'll fill your belly without emptying your pocketbook.


If you've enjoyed this, let us know about other food spots you'd like us to try out. Also, make our day by subscribing to the email list. You can do that by entering your email in the block back at the top of this page.

Check out Jason blog at

Here are some of the other spots we've been to:

Tracy's Seafood in Port Arthur

Abbie's Specialty Foods

Bruce's Seafood Deli




Fridays are my favorite day of the week; Jason and I are usually both off work. So we have a thing where we try and find a new eating establishment.  Apparently the extent of our sense of adventure includes nothing more than a fork, but I dig it. Jason posted a picture of yesterday's day's eating joint. The picture didn't do the place justice. Here it is in case you missed it.

Tracy's Inside

Nothing says appealing like a hot pink wave wall painted with pale yellow and turquoise geometric shapes and a nice fake potted palm tree/ivy. That's why we felt obliged to write a quick post about yesterday's cuisine.

Here's our shared blog about the experience:

I'll let you in on how I found out about this joint. I've been in physical therapy for three weeks now because it seems when I behave myself  (instead of freaking out under stress) the stress just builds up in my neck and shoulders. It makes me wonder if behaving myself is good for my health. The stress had been so built up that I ended up having daily headaches, half of a hand going numb off and on and the feeling of creepy crawlies all over my head, all the time.

Anyway, Dr. Hunt here in Nederland is fixing me up. He and his ladies are helpful and super friendly. If you have neck or back problems, go see him.


That being said, part of my therapy includes doing these gosh-awful exercises for my neck and shoulders, usually three sets of twenty. I have to count for myself so I can't talk. Others that have been at this a while are pros and can do their exercises and talk at the same time. One guy mentioned last Wednesday that he got the best chicken wings "from the hood" a few nights before. He said the place was named Tracy's and was on Gulfway. I did my best the rest of my time to count my neck tucks and remember where Jason and I needed to go on our next Heyday Friday.

Yesterday was wet and cold but there was sunshine in my soul. I had my favorite food cooked just the way I like it.  I would say I love oysters, but my great-grandmother always told us not to say we love anything besides people.  She was THE boss and I'm still afraid to not do what she says.  Fellow oyster-likers can see how big and juicy and 'not ruined by too much crust' these oysters are (I hate having to peel off superfluous crust).  Fries are usually just a filler in my opinion, but these fries were fresh and well-seasoned. They paired well with the homemade tartar sauce which I normally never eat.



I've used more than the reasonable word limit and Jason ordered a couple of things so here's the low down from Jason on the rest of our experience.

There are so many great eating spots right here in Nederland, that we haven’t ventured out lately.  When Kristi overheard some folks talking about this seafood place in Port Arthur that served up some serious chicken wings, I was immediately interested.  We had a little time on our hands this past Friday and a few dollars burning a hole in our pockets so we ventured into the heart of Port Arthur to check out Tracy’s Seafood Deli.

Where Is It?

Tracy's Map

I’m not far off when I say Tracy’s is in the heart of Port Arthur.  It’s a convenient location to anyone working at the Motiva plant.  I’m sure I’d be there as often as I could if I was nearby at lunchtime every day.


What’s It Like?

At some point in the past, Tracy’s was a Burger King.  They have maintained some of the furnishings, but nothing of the menu.  This might be the best repurposing of a fast food place I’ve ever experienced.  Don’t come here expecting napkins and silverware on the table.  This is a place for hungry people to fill their bellies with fried, boiled or grilled seafood goodness.

What We Ate.

I couldn’t just order one thing.  I was hungry for seafood and for their chicken wings.  I checked out the menu online before going in.  I thought the pictures on their website were a little too good to be true.  The first image I was really interested in was a platter of jumbo shrimp that were large enough to live up to their oxymoronic name.  The shrimp I saw on their website could have been saddled and ridden by small children.  I was expecting to be underwhelmed, but I was pleased to find there is still some truth in advertising.  Check out this plate of bad-boys I put down.


When I saw the price for the chicken wings, I was a little taken aback.  I didn’t scope these out on the web first so I came into Tracy’s expecting the WingStop or Buffalo Wild Wing variety.  6 wings for $10.39 was overcooking my grits, but I didn’t come all this way to turn down a culinary adventure.  When they came out of the fryer, my financial frown was turned upside down.  When you eat wings at Tracy’s, don’t think about wing pieces.  Think about the entire wing, except feathers.  This was simple, tasty goodness.


I actually had leftovers!  I brought the box home for the kids to enjoy.  They ate everything but the salad. I’m afraid they even ate the bones.

Kristi is an oyster fanatic.  If a place has fried oysters, that’s her first stop on the menu.  She picked up half a dozen with fries.  There are usually pitfalls that we watch out for when ordering fried oysters. The first is over-breading.  When a restaurant  is serving up pre-made, stale-off-the-truck, variety of oysters, it shows up first in the breading.  The breading can drown out the natural oyster goodness.  The next pitfall is the size of the oysters.  We’ve been to places where you had to search through the breading to even find an oyster.  We don’t go in for the tiny ones.  If we can eat an oyster in one bite, it’s No Bueno.  Third, it should not be overcooked.  These delicate sea goodies cease to be good if they are left in the fryer for too long.

I’m glad to report that Tracy’s gets 5 stars on all fronts of their oyster prep.  Their oysters were HUGE.  These were two, or three, bite delights.  They were lightly breaded.  They were not afraid to let their oysters speak for themselves.  The cornbread breading was just enough to make it interesting, but not so much to take away from the oyster experience.  Finally, they were cooked just long enough.  We like them raw, so undercooking should rarely be a problem.  These still contained significant, natural oyster brine oozing out after every bite.


If you have a little time on you hand and a hankering for goo seafood, try out Tracy’s Seafood Deli.

I’m looking forward to trying the Boiled Crawfish, Crab Legs, and Vietnamese Egg Rolls.

Give them a try and let them know what you think.



Dr. Jason Burden FBC Nederland 409.722.0263


The LORD has done it this very day; let us rejoice and be glad. Psalm 118:24

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Bad news first. No Novice Foodie Mission this Friday. I know. I know. We didn't have one last Friday either, but as I mentioned on Facebook, I had the misfortune of being introduced to Indian food. I'm sure the place we tried was marvelous, if you like your meat and vegetables rolled in potpourri and served with yogurt. Alas no review. We're too nice for that.

Today, we've got stuff to do. Jason had to run to Beaumont to grab Hayden's iPhone which had to be fixed. I passed my technology curse on to the kid. Phones, computers,.......those electric sliding doors in Walmart just don't work like they're supposed to in my presence...or in Hayden's. Even when I DON'T drop my phone in the toilet it does weird things. For instance all of my contacts have disappeared and I have to answer my phone old-school style. I have no idea who you are which means I don't know if you're someone I want to talk to or not before I answer. Hayden's phone battery is defective.

C'est la vie (If you don't remember the 80's song, it means "That's just the way it goes".... "That's Life").

 I stayed here this morning. I'm fixing up a double batch of "The Pioneer Woman's" Frito Pie. I won't critique my own food, but I will share a link to the Frito Pie we're having.

Click HERE for the recipe.


To get all that we needed to get done this morning we skipped our workout at the gym so no calories were burned today. And then look what Jason found on the way home.
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This is much better than the ten pound box of bologna he brought me on our first anniversary.  The guy has learned.  I can now say he's the complete package.

They're Triple Chocolate Torte cupcakes.

I am so confident of this cupcake that I started writing a blog post about it at first sight.... before I tasted it. Jason had his before lunch.


The guy at Gigi's told Jason that you're supposed to heat it up in the microwave for about 10-15 seconds.  He mentioned ice cream too. How can it not be good?

Did I mention Hayden was having lunch with us today? His cupcake question was "How many calories does it have?". Guessing it had to be about a thousand, I Googled it. This is what the Gigi's website has to say about it.

Triple Chocolate Torte

Rich, dark chocolate cake

with a brownie texture,

baked without flour,

topped with a chocolate ganache rose

and powdered sugar.

Gluten Free Groupies (and people like me who attempt to be Gluten Reduced/Gluten Conscious) ….What, WHAT!!

I looked up a similar flourless cupcake. It had 191 calories. I can handle that. I'll work out tomorrow.

Now. About that cupcake.

What can I say?

It's a beautiful thing. I LOVE the Triple Chocolate Torte cupcake.


There is no remedy for love but to love more.

-Henry David Thoreau

I'll do my best!





So. Jason and I are finally back to having our Friday lunch date. Kathy Bass suggested The Old Orange Cafe last spring. We took her up on that suggestion today.

All I can say is White Balsamic & Bacon Dressing.

Well, I can always say more, but White Balsamic & Bacon Dressing will no doubt be the most important thing I say all day.

The Old Orange Café is found at 914 W Division St. in Orange. There are plenty of great places to eat in here in Nederland, but sometimes we just like to take a short road trip. I might mention that we crossed the "bridges" and I didn't pray this time. I took pictures instead. I'm growing up. Have I mentioned I hate bridges? Sometimes I wish we could get from Point A to Point C without Point B, Point B being the bridge. But like I mentioned, it's Point B that has taught me to pray and gets me to Point C. And now that I'm starting to grow up, I'm learning that Point B, the bridge (though sometimes frightening) is beautiful.

The café is off of Tenth Street. We had to circle the block several times before parking, but you don't need to do that.


No complaints here. Our glasses were never empty and we were waited on promptly.


The building was originally opened in the early 1940's as part of a dairy. The walls are covered in ceramic tile as was required of a dairy in those days. The café has a rustic feel with historic pictures of Orange and of the owners' family. Have I mentioned that I love pictures? It's a small building with high ceilings. It's an any occasion type of place.


$$ The entrée's range from about $8 to the Catch of the Day being around $20.


The menu offers a wide range of offerings. Normally, I'm not a big salad eater, but there were six or more types of salads and every one of them sounded good. They offer sandwiches and burgers; a shrimp burger with a jalepeno cheese bun and spicy mayo caught my eye. There are also several chicken and shrimp entrees. Fresh pies, including buttermilk, are served too but we were too stuffed. In fact, Jason is so stuffed he's not helping me write today. He's stretched out somewhere.


Jason had the special, Portabella Chicken. When I just asked how he liked it, a voice from the couch said, it was goodness slathered in cream and sautéed onions, topped with avocado. I had the Swiss Bacon Quiche. It was light, tasty and fluffy; everything a good quiche should be. The crust was homemade; I could tell. But the best part was the Shrimp Salad we decided to share. This is where I bring up that White Balsamic & Bacon Dressing again. This is also where my only regret of the day (so far) comes in; sharing the Shrimp Salad with Jason. Because sharing with your husband is not always fifty-fifty. I almost flipped the bowl stabbing a shrimp close to the rim before Jason could get to it. We also both used our finger to get the last taste of dressing that remained in the Dixie dressing cup….and lid. It was that good.

The Old Orange Café was a great outing. I also probably don't have to remind you local folks that Orange is a great city to visit with the Lutcher Theater and the Stark Museum (Disclaimer: Haven't been to either, but they're on the list). A visit to Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center would also be a nice place to visit after you eat, to walk off some of those candied walnuts. In fact, every fall I understand that the Gardens have a display of scarecrows. The website shows "The Scarecrow Festival" starting on October 8. We've planned on going every year, but haven't made it yet. I've tried to convince Hayden every year since we've been here that's what he wants to do for his birthday (10/30). Because what teenage boy wouldn't want to look at scarecrows with his parents and sisters? Maybe the promise of an accompanying slice of chocolate pie might entice him.