I was lucky enough to attend the 5th annual Old Arabi Sugar Fest in St. Bernard Parish, held September 29, 2013. Not only did I attend the Sugar Fest, but I was a judge (The Louisiana Travelin’ Man can’t just eat gumbo). This was my first visit to the Sugar Fest and I was impressed by the vendors, the music, the food and the 14 entries in the Sugar Fest Baker-rama contest. They also had a doughnut eating contest which I did not participate in.
St. Bernard Parish is just a few miles away from the French Quarter and has so much to offer. (More info on St. Bernard Parish Tourism). The Old Arabi Sugar Fest was held on the grounds of the LeBeau Plantation which is just a stone’s throw from the Domino Sugar Refinery. Unfortunately, the plantation is in need of lots of love and care to bring it back to its glory. Here is a link to info on the plantation.
Now for the best part of my job: the judging. There were 14 entries and, as I found out, one person entered four different items. There were lemon cookies, gingerbread cookies, a double chocolate brownie and a pecan pie to name a few. But, it turns out that the person who entered the four different baked goods won 1st Place and 2nd Place. Her name is Elena Hodges and she is a culinary student at Nunez Community College in Chalmette and when you see the photo of her cake, you will know why she won. It tasted even better than it looked. In fact, we had to ask the organizer if this was a store bought cake. It wasn’t. Elena has a great future in desserts.
The Louisiana Travelin' Man