Poppy Tooker

Host of Louisiana Eats!

Poppy is the host and executive producer of the weekly show, Louisiana Eats! Food personality, culinary teacher and author, Poppy Tooker is passionate about food and the people who bring it to the table.

Poppy provides weekly restaurant commentary on, “Steppin’ Out” (WYES TV). Her book, The Crescent City Farmers Market Cookbook received a Tabasco cookbook award and was named “Cookbook of the Year” by New Orleans Magazine.She was recognized by the Times-Picayune as a “Hero of the Storm” for her work reviving New Orleans restaurants and food providers following Hurricane Katrina. The International Association of Cooking Professionals recognized Poppy’s rebuilding efforts at their annual conference in April 2008, with their first ever, Community Service Award.

For over 25 years, Poppy’s cooking classes have centered on history and tradition as well as the food science behind her preparation.

Ways to Connect

National Cancer Institute

There were so many different food stories that emerged this past year that we had a hard time narrowing them down to a single hour of programming. Whether it was the Gulotta brothers opening up their own restaurant in Mid-City or a national grocery store returning to the city, there seemed to be new food stories popping up everywhere. It wasn't just local either: one of our favorite chefs traveled to Russia and The New York Times stuck its foot in its mouth

Sadly, we also lost some very good friends of ours. Michael Mizell-Nelson and Rudy Lombard both championed Louisiana's foodways and worked hard to preserve many of our customs and traditions. We'll revisit them one as time before we turn the page to another calendar year.

US Navy

  Scholar Michael Twitty says that during the holidays, "everybody's stuff is all mixed up." He speaks from experience: Michael's connected to Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa celebrations that keep him busy this time of year. He's one of the many guests who'll sit at our table to discuss how their holiday traditions are kept alive and why food is often at the center of those traditions. 

Brian Streeter

At one point in their lives, each of our guests had to choose whether or not they would inherit a family business. The answer didn't always come quickly, and most of them had to change the business to make it their own, but each decided to carry their family's tradition to the next generation.

flickr/Seattle Municial Archives

With so much to do during the holidays and so little time to do it, they often don't feel like "the most wonderful time of the year." But if you pocket a word of wisdom from our guests, perhaps you'll be able to go about the next couple weeks breathing easier. 

Marjory Collins

The Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church is the oldest Orthodox Church in America. For 150 years the members of the church have passed down their traditions bit by bit, day by day. But now that our culture has changed and fewer people have extra time on their hands, the culture could be in jeopardy of being lost. This week on Louisiana Eats! we'll speak with the women of the church as they prepare finikia to hear their thoughts about community, family and heritage. 

Poppy Tooker

Evan McCommon has been converting his family's timber ranch into a biodiverse farm. The changes have been slow, but his resolve steady as the 1,100 acres change from a dense forest to an open savannah. 

Poppy Tooker

The interior of Aaron Sanchez and John Besh’s new restaurant is split into two designs: one that looks like the iconic architecture of New Orleans, and the other is an homage to Sanchez’s vibrant tattooed body. Even though both of these chefs have found success independently, their new collaboration at Johnny Sanchez is having each chef second guess what they took for granted. 

Valentina Powers / Flickr

On this week’s Louisiana Eats! we speak to Manbo Sallie Ann Glassman about the role food plays in ceremonial vodou, chat with Mary Ann Winkowski about her ability to speak with the departed, and learn about rituals, mojo bags, and herbal remedies from Miriam Chamani.

Plus, Scott Gold throws a Halloween party and Chris Jay visits the Grill of the Dead in Shreveport.

Terry McCarthy

Michael Weiss has been teaching people about wine long before he started teaching wine studies at the Culinary Institute of America. He can tell you anything you want to know about chardonnay, pinot, or rose and can even help you pair foods with your favorite bottle of merlot.

Luckily, you don’t have to sit through his five-hour course to learn how to appreciate wine. Get out your notepads for Michael’s master class.

Terry McCarthy

Even though they weren't the most ideal crew for picking grapes, the members of the American Harvest Workshop rose to the challenge of hand-harvesting chardonnay  on a cloudy California morning.