Pizza, Curry, Hummus And More

Mario Pacetti Thursday, July 20, 2017 Comments Off on Pizza, Curry, Hummus And More
Pizza, Curry, Hummus And More

By Mario Pacetti

I’ve had so much good food lately that I’ve decided to highlight some of it. I’m still amazed by all the different types of food we have in this small piece of the world. When I was a kid growing up here, there only seemed to be a few choices. But over the last 25-30 years, we’ve become quite culturally diverse. And with that has come all the exciting foods the various cultures bring to the table.

The first place I want to highlight is a new pizza joint on Common Street called “Stonefired Pizzeria.” The place has a real cozy feel. It isn’t huge, but it’s well laid out.

You can order “classic” pizzas or you can build your own from a plethora of ingredients. The thing that got me most excited was that they offered prosciutto, which is rare around this area.

My dining partner and I decided to keep it simple and go with the “Fired Up Supreme.” The name says it all. We also ordered the Chicken Carbonara, which is a favorite of mine. I love a good alfredo on my pizza.

Both pizzas were incredibly fresh tasting. I absolutely loved the thin crust; it wasn’t too soft or overly crunchy, which happens a lot with a thin crust. The cooks seemed to have their technique down.

I love the fact that this is another homegrown spot that shows how creative our local people are. This place has motivated me to get my food judging buddies together again so that we can do a “Best Pizza” contest and find out who really throws down the best when it comes to pizza in SWLA.

Stonefired Pizzeria

3710 Common St., Lake Charles

(337) 477-3020

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I work a lot in the Lafayette area, and in particular in Carencro. Every time I’m there, I try to get by and have lunch at Veronica’s Café. This is in a small house that was converted into a restaurant. It’s off the beaten path, so you may not just be passing by. I’m telling you, it’s worth putting the address into your GPS and getting your butt over there for some bomb-ass home cooking.

The other day, I stopped in and had the stuffed pork roast, which alone could be the topic of an entire article. But the sides were just as much a highlight as the main dish. The cabbage they make is my favorite of any home-cooked place. I don’t know what makes it better, but they’ve somehow figured out how to make it seem as if it’s been cooking all day and is still flavorful. It hasn’t been reduced to a soggy mush.

The yams were candied and cooked to the point that they melted in your mouth with every bite. If you mixed all three of the items together in each bite, then you were really putting in the good work with this meal.

Veronica’s Café

302 Hector Connoly Rd., Carencro

(337) 565-2301

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Raja’s is one of my favorite places to eat, but I only get to go about once a month because I absolutely punish myself with the amount of food I put on my plate.

I’ve only been during the day, so for me it’s a no-brainer to just order off the buffet so that I can try everything they have to offer.

The naan, which is their bread, is amazing. And as much as I don’t need to be throwing down on bread, I can’t seem to stop eating it. I’ve actually gotten to the point that I’ll have to wait for the naan to get to the table before I can proceed with my meal.

My absolute favorite dish here is the Chicken Biryani, which a simple chicken and rice dish from India/Pakistan. I’m not sure how it’s made, but I could just eat that with the naan and be content.

I was never a huge curry fan until I ate here; now I love it. Every dish they make with it is seasoned perfectly, from the lamb to the chicken to the cauliflower. Every curry dish they have is  killing it.

Raja’s Curry Kitchen & Grill

3821 Ryan St., Lake Charles

(337) 476-2777

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To finish off this little highlight piece, I wrote about the Sloppy Empire, and more specifically, Sloppy’s Downtown. I checked out the fish sandwich which is “crispy tempura-battered filet of grouper with creamy aji sauce, sriracha, soy glaze, shredded cabbage, thinly sliced purple onion and red bell pepper.” This freaking sandwich was a marriage of many flavors, and it did become quite messy. But I caught myself licking the soy glaze off the side of my hands rather than just wiping them off. I didn’t want to miss out on any of the meal.

Brett was working on a new marinara for his pizza, and he brought me out a piece to try. I must say he could make a living doing pizzas.

The hummus I got was surprisingly good. Locally, we have some pretty bad ass humus to choose from. But Brett and his crew did not disappoint.

I have not made it out yet, but I’ve heard rave reviews about their Zydeco Brunch on Saturdays. Make sure you get out and support local!

Sloppy’s Downtown

329 Broad St., Lake Charles

(337) 602-6365

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