Since landing in New Orleans almost a month ago, I've always eaten my po'boy sandwiches with seafood. If you can get an eleven-inch sandwich stuffed with shrimp and oysters for five dollars, why would you eat anything else? This afternoon, though, I decided that I must expand my culinary horizons. With a sense of adventure, I walked down to my neighborhood grocer and ordered a Fergie, a warm po'boy made with ham and roast beef.
With a hot sandwich wrapped in white paper, I headed home to discover what I'd been missing.
Honestly, I wasn't expecting to find something fabulous once I unwrapped the sandwich. I assumed that deep fried seafood was the main attraction to the po'boy. This ignored, though, the central tenet of New Orleans cooking--if it's not delicious, then they don't sell it.
I had ordered the Fergie dressed, which in my experience typically means mayo, lettuce, tomato, and dill pickles. When I unwrapped the sandwich, though, I found that on this occasion the pickles had been left off and a new ingredient added--brown gravy. In most parts of the country, one spreadable fat would be enough. Not in New Orleans, where they logically assume that if mayonnaise tastes good and gravy tastes good, then the combination must be doubly delicious. And you know what? They are absolutely right.
Also posted at A Frolic of My Own.