Monday, September 21, 2009
Lunch at Cafe Ma'me
This afternoon I found myself meeting a prospective business partner in Oak Grove for lunch. He suggested a recently opened eatery near his office - Cafe Ma'me. I was pretty excited about the prospects of trying out this newly opened boutique cafe. I had heard good things about it from our friends at myHattiesburg.com, so I was looking forward to trying it myself.
From what I can tell this is an extension of D. Morgan Catering, with a modest dinning area sharing the kitchen with the catering company. The setting is cozy, about half a dozen mismatched tables in an intimate setting.
Cafe Ma'me bills itself as "true French with Creole and Cajun influences".
I enjoy Cajun/Creole cuisine, Mrs. Food Blogger's family traces roots from the Mississippi Gulf Coast to New Orleans (Old Metry as they call it) and back to France. So, she quite frankly spoils me with some of the best Cajun/Creole you can find anywhere.
Cafe Me'me is open Monday-Friday from 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM, and serve a limited menu. Today the lunch special was a "Creole smothered steak with mashed potatoes and English peas".
The Lunch special was served with a small pone of cornbread. The cornbread was pretty good, it was sweetened and that's just a pet peeve of mine, I don't like sweet cornbread. I grew up eating a more coarse ground savory cornbread and that's just the way I prefer it. If you like sweet cornbread, you'll probably really like this as it was served piping hot with fresh spread.
The smother steak and mashed potatoes were well above average. I'll go so far as to say one of the better "home style" lunch plates I've had in some time. The steak was not a chopped or cubed steak. It had the texture of a thickly sliced roast beef cutlet that was "cut with a fork" tender. It was smothered in a creole flavored brown gravy that was quite nice. Now when I say it was a Creole gravy don't think spicy. Authentic Creole cooking is not about the heat it's about flavor. And the flavor always starts with onions, bell pepper and celery, and they blended together in this brown gravy to near perfection.
The mashed potatoes were home made, not out of a box. They were creamy with that unmistakable texture of real mashed potatoes. The Creole gravy on these home made mashed potatoes was just excellent The English peas were good but not to my taste, these peas were sweeter, they had to have added maybe some creme fresh or maybe butter and sugar. They were not bad, but this is another item that I tend to prefer savory over sweet.
To finish the meal the offered s complimentary bread pudding desert. Again you can tell that this was home made and not out of a box. I was pleased to taste hints of not only the traditional cinnamon, but also nutmeg. A light fresh creme sauce was served over the bread pudding, could have used a bit more of the sauce but in all a very nice desert.
The red beans and rice looked and smelled wonderful, but I didn't get to try them, I'll check that out the next time I am out that way.
Weekly Specials - 9/21 - 9-25, 2009