New Orleans is legendary for its cuisine, but the butter- and fish-laden fare has never been a “big easy” for vegans and healthy eaters—until now. PETA has been working with New Orleans’ tourism board to adapt this year’s Tremé Creole Gumbo Festival in Louis Armstrong Park so that each chef offers a vegan gumbo option—for the first time ever. If you’ve been considering a trip to New Orleans, now is the time to visit!
To promote the landmark event, there will be a vegan gumbo cook-off in the park on Saturday, November 9. Food writers from across the state and gourmet chefs will be on hand to judge the vegan gumbos and determine the most delicious dish. The grand-prize winner will receive a $1,000 gift certificate to the Food Network’s online store, and the Restaurant Depot and Whole Foods will also kindly donate prizes to participants.
Response to the vegan gumbo competition has been positive, with well-known local eateries such as Dickie Brennan’s Bourbon House, Lil’ Dizzy’s, and Ms. Linda’s signing on to participate. In fact, the event is already at vendor capacity, which can only mean that hundreds of New Orleanians are about to discover how easy it is to transform traditional comfort food into scrumptious vegan cuisine. They might even feel like they’ve died and gone to vegan gumbo heaven.
The festival is free and produced by the nonprofit New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation. We hope to see you there! But if you can’t make it to the festival in person, you can still put on some jazz and try out this recipe for Louisiana vegetable gumbo.