Creole cuisine in the aircraft cabin



3 September 2009


Lufthansa First and Business-Class passengers can look forward to the savoury aroma of exotic in-flight fare on long-haul flights in September and October.

The Airline has successfully engaged the services of the acclaimed New Orleans chef John Besh to add his culinary expertise to the in-flight menus.

A son of Louisiana, John Besh runs four successful and award-winning restaurants in New Orleans. In the two months in which he is cooperating with Lufthansa, the in-flight menus will betray the influences of Creole and Cajun cuisine. Louisiana crawfish in gelee with lemon and tomato vinaigrette or jambon terrine with marinated beans and onion chutney will, for example, be served as appetisers in First Class.

The choice of main dish runs, among others, to grilled beef tenderloin with macque choux and Cajun vegetable ragout or sugar and spice duck breast served with stewed quinces, leafy spinach and creamy polenta. The desserts are a perfect finale: streusel pear tart and brown butter ice cream or passion fruit and grapefruit jelly, marshmallows and pecan with lemon leaf sorbet.

The menus in Business Class also promise savoury delights in the aircraft cabin. Crawfish salad with Creole remoulade will be among the starters, another will be terrine of braised beef with beans, tomatoes and red onion chutney. The Business-Class menu continues for example, with jambalaya, a Creole stew with king prawns, chicken, vegetables and rice or ravioli filled with beans purée served with pistou sauce. Delicious desserts include blueberry crumble with stewed fruit or fruit salad with grapes.

Accolades, such as the James Beard Award for Best Chef of the Southeast in 2006 in recognition of his commitment to the cuisine of the southern states, underline the respect John Besh has gained as a chef extraordinaire. Born and bred in Louisiana, and trained at the “Culinary Institute of America”, John Besh instils in his creations the vitality and diversity of southern-state cuisine. As the most distinguished custodian and innovator of a rich culinary heritage, he is devotedly committed to preserving the traditions of Creole and Cajun cuisine.

Both cuisines use similar staples and are yet markedly different. Creole cooking is more urbane, grander and refined. Cajun cuisine is a more rustic, country-style cooking, with the emphasis on more substantial fare and sharper seasoning. John Besh interprets the traditions of both cuisines in his own inimitable style in his restaurants August, Besh Steak, Lüke and La Provence in New Orleans. He also calls on culinary influences from France and Germany, where he gathered international experience.

Through his sophisticated dishes, John Besh expresses his dedication to the cultural heritage of his native Louisiana and its inhabitants, who keep the city’s spirit alive. As a mark of his commitment Chef Besh was actively involved in reconstructing New Orleans after the devastation of hurricane Katrina. He provided 3,000 meals a day to rescue teams and quickly reopened his August Restaurant, sheepherding in the city’s renaissance by nurturing its renowned culinary identity.


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