Bossier City Chef Announces House Concurrent Resolution No. 88 Designating “Official Meal of North Louisiana”

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Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau shares details of State of Louisiana’s first official meal, which was created by Chef Hardette Harris.

A photo of Chef Hardette Harris

Chef Hardette Harris, creator of the official meal of northern Louisiana, leads a cooking demonstration in February 2015.

If we're not proud of our local food traditions, why would anyone else think that they are exciting? -Chef Hardette Harris

House Concurrent Resolution No. 88, which was enrolled and signed by the Speaker of the Louisiana House of Representatives and the President of the Louisiana State Senate on May 4, 2015, recognizes the culinary uniqueness of northern Louisiana and designates its official meal. As outlined in the resolution, the official meal of northern Louisiana consists of such dishes as fried catfish, purple hull peas and hot water cornbread. The meal was created by Chef Hardette Harris, a native of Minden who now resides in Bossier City. A full list of menu items included in the meal, along with photos of House Concurrent Resolution No. 88, can be viewed at http://www.foodtourslouisiana.com.

Chef Harris will host a tasting and cooking demo, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., on Saturday, June 27 at Shreveport Little Theatre. Tickets are now available for the event, which will highlight many of the foods named as components of the official meal. Tickets are $45 for adults and $22.50 for children ages 3 and older. Tickets may be purchased at http://www.foodtourslouisiana.com.

“What I'm trying to do is invite locals and visitors to join me in celebrating and sitting down to eat. We want to show the world 'this is what we eat,'” Harris said. “If we're not proud of our local food traditions, why would anyone else think that they are exciting?”

Chef Harris worked with State Representative Gene Reynolds, of Minden, to develop the State of Louisiana's first official meal, bringing recognition to the culinary uniqueness of northern Louisiana. She hopes to foster public interest in northern Louisiana cuisine among food lovers and the public at large. Through her business, Pure Louisiana Soul™ Food Tours and Tastings, Harris is currently developing tastings of traditional northern Louisiana cuisine which she plans to market to locals, as well as to Shreveport-Bossier visitors.

Harris hopes to see restaurants in northern Louisiana regularly offer one or more of the dishes from the official meal.

“I hope that our local chefs will join our fabulous home cooks in serving these dishes and others with the same pride and enthusiasm that our cousins have down south when they offer up a hearty bowl of red beans and rice or a smoking hot seafood platter,” Harris said.

For more information on Pure Louisiana Soul™ Food Tours and Tastings, Chef Hardette Harris or the June 27 tasting and cooking demo at Shreveport Little Theatre, visit http://www.foodtourslouisiana.com.

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Chris Jay

Chef Hardette Harris
@sbctb
since: 10/2008
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