Raising breast cancer awareness one bite at a time
October is a happening month. It ushers in cooler, more pleasant weather that begins its flirt with fall; it’s a time to celebrate the fantasy of Halloween, one of New Orleans’ favorite holidays; and it’s also National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, an occasion to shine a spotlight on the important strides being made in breast cancer research. In honor of breast cancer awareness, New Orleans Living went in search of pink foods across the city in hopes that diners will ponder the meaning behind the color that is so often associated with breast cancer awareness. When you indulge, perhaps you’ll consider getting involved with this important cause. Remember, lending a hand makes for a rosy disposition, so find yourself in the pink and think when you eat and drink!
This sweet boutique on Magazine Street wallows in inviting pastels, and pink makes quite a show in many of its exceptionally handcrafted treats. The richly flavored homemade frozen concoctions boast a rainbow of pinks, including the raspberry sorbet and the wildly bright Nectar Cream gelato. The strawberry gelato and vanilla sponge cake compose the blissful strawberry shortcake shake. The raspberry pate de fruits delivers pink in a sweet and sophisticated jelly confection, and the fraise, a dark-pink strawberry gelée-topped vanilla sponge cake with fresh-cut strawberries, is finished with light cream and wrapped in delicate ladyfingers, a beautiful sight to behold. But it’s the Raspberry Japonaise that takes pink to epic heights in pastry form, a display of fresh raspberries, luscious rosewater mousseline, a big pink cassis macaroon crown and a spray of pink luster that makes for a gorgeous metallic finish, earning this whopper of a dessert the name of Big Pink.
MORTON’S, THE STEAKHOUSE
High-quality tuna is pink, and the ruby color of the refreshing tuna tartare appetizer at Morton’s, at the Canal Place Mall, pops next to an alternating layer of chopped bright green avocado. Lobsters at Morton’s range in color from reds to soft rose, and the Maine Lobster Cocktail boasts chunks of chilled lobster meat. Morton’s offers a series of Mortinis that fit the pink bill, including the Heavenly Cosmopolitan, made with cranberry juice, fresh lime juice, Grand Marnier and Ketel One Citroen Vodka, and the Pomegranate Mortini, made with Absolut Vodka, pomegranate syrup and passion fruit puree with whipped pomegranate foam floated on top. But the most obvious way to enjoy pink is to order your steak rare in the middle, and Morton’s is happy to oblige. Choose from any cut of meat desired, from New York strip steak to filet mignon.
VIANNE’S TEA SALON AND CAFE
Pink is happening at Vianne’s in Mandeville, where touches of pink are highlighted in honor of the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the charity the salon supports this October. A slew of fragrant teas fall in the pink-colored category after they’re steeped at your table, including the Casablanca tea, a mysterious, exotic herb-and-fruit blend with hints of strawberry and raspberry that exudes a beautiful shade of pink. The rose tea is a hearty black tea, heavy with gorgeous rose petals. Adults often order selections from the children’s tea menu, including Tutti Frutti, Bubblegum and Chloe’s Tea Party, a delicious blend of apple, pineapple and papaya with cinnamon, almonds, coconut and popcorn that also yields a cup of pink. But get ready to raise your pinky to a new infusion, Mr. Darcy’s Tea, named after the love interest in Jane Austen’s novel Pride and Prejudice. It’s a golden-reddish brew of strawberries and raspberries in a chocolate tea laced with pink rose petals and little pink sugar hearts that melt when infused. Vianne’s will also feature winsome pink chocolate–covered strawberries and pink petit fours in October during tea service.
DORIGNAC’S FOOD CENTER
You’ll feel as though you’re donning rose-colored glasses when you spot all the magnificent shades of pink dotting the aisles at this popular Metairie grocery. Start with Dorignac’s in-house bakery to see pink leaf cookies sandwiched with chocolate in-between, pink strawberry cheesecakes, birthday cakes airbrushed in hot pink with piped pink icing and raspberry-frosted sugar cookies with sprinkles. Fresh pink grapefruits shine in the produce section. Some products feature the pink breast cancer awareness ribbon on their packages, including Strawberry Jell-O, Cool Whip and Mrs. Renfro’s Raspberry Chipotle Salsa, indicating that proceeds from sales will be donated to breast cancer research. The frozen section is alive with pink, including Blue Bunny’s Premium Bordeaux Cherry Chocolate, a pale cherry-colored ice cream swirled with dark cherry pieces and dark chocolate flakes. And don’t forget Dorignac’s famed spirits, wine and beer section, which is chock-full of pink you can drink, from Beringer White Zinfandel to Perrier-Jouet Blason Rosé. There’s even an adorable kitten-shaped bottle of pink Riesling with a “Support the Cause” ribbon on it, so drink up!
VITALITY JUICE, JAVA AND SMOOTHIE BAR
You can feel good about eating and drinking pink, especially knowing that no hormones, pesticides or chemicals are allowed in any of the quality ingredients at this innovative health resource with locations in Metairie, Harahan, downtown and Mandeville—and that’s important to consider for breast cancer prevention! ThinkPink protein bars come in peanut butter caramel and white chocolate raspberry, wrapped in bright pink and ribbons reminding consumers to “think about a cure,” with a portion of proceeds from each bar going to fund breast cancer education and research. Lifeway Organic Lowfat Kefir Cultured Milk Smoothie in strawberries ‘n’ cream is a healthy cousin of yogurt. Nature’s Path Organic Frosted Toaster Pastries in cherry pomegranate boasts pretty coatings of frosty pink and sugar sprinkles. Belly up to Vitality’s bar and boost your health through a variety of pink drinks, from the tangy, icy, sweet deep-magenta of the Pomegranate Sangrita to the Avalanche dessert shake in Nectar Crème Soda, a soda fountain favorite in New Orleans, reworked with no sugar and surprisingly good for you!