Photos by Aimee Broussard.

Aimee’s Pretty Palate: Wedding Season Sweetness

You’ve heard the saying “April showers bring May flowers,” but the month of May also brings us the start of wedding season, with May, June and July all among the top five months to get married, according to

My own wedding, 14 years ago (where does the time go?), falls into that category. And if you know the story of how my career in food began, then you know that it was semi-sparked by a thoughtful gift I received just before walking down the aisle: a recipe box filled with my husband’s family favorites, all handwritten by my sister-in-law Ricci.

Those recipes were among the first ones shared on my generic and not food-focused blog; a blog I began more than 13 years ago as I transitioned away from my job in corporate insurance. Then, I won a wardrobe makeover and trip to NYC to meet Tim Gunn… but I digress.

Newly married and tasked with solving the daily, “what are we going to eat for dinner” conundrum, I often turned to that recipe box, confident I would find something within its contents to impress my new husband. That recipe box, along with dog-eared pages of Louisiana Tiger Bait (also a wedding shower gift), a handful of Junior League cookbooks and my grandmother’s coveted sorority cookbook continue to inspire me when I find myself stuck in a recipe rut.

A practically no-fail recipe for newlyweds or those wanting to get dinner on the table quickly without dirtying too many dishes comes from one of those cookbooks via the “Louisiana Chicken.” What makes it Louisianan you ask? The addition of both Tabasco sauce and Cajun seasoning. Don’t worry, though, it’s not overly spicy and there’s even room for adding more if your personal preference is a bit more of a kick. Anything combining a side and a protein in the same pan will always get my vote, so I’ve renamed it One Pan Louisiana Chicken & Rice.

My Celebration Pound Cake is also a modified recipe. It’s a version of a handwritten recipe found in my grandmother’s beloved sorority cookbook, gifted to me shortly after she passed away. Her recipe called for equal parts sugar, butter and flour—a pound each. Some will find my additional sugar unnecessary, but when whipping up a rich and buttery pound cake for a bridal shower or wedding anniversary, or any occasion celebrating something “sweet,” I say go for it.

I also say go for gifting heirloom cookbooks and recipe boxes filled with family treasures this wedding season. You never know what culinary prowess they may inspire.

One Pan Louisiana Chicken & Rice

Slightly adapted “Louisiana Chicken” from the Louisiana Tiger Bait cookbook.


4 chicken breasts

1½ tsp. salt

118 tsp. pepper

4 Tbsp. butter

¼ cup onion, chopped

½ cup green bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbsp. parsley, chopped

1 cup rice

1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

¼ tsp. cayenne pepper

1 tsp. Cajun seasoning

Dash of Tabasco

Pinch of thyme

2½ cups hot chicken broth

Garnish, additional chopped parsley


Pat chicken breasts dry and season with 1 tsp. each salt and pepper.

In a large Dutch oven with lid, melt butter over medium heat. Brown chicken in melted butter until golden on both sides. Remove from pan.

Add onion, bell pepper and parsley and cook until onion is translucent. Add rice, remaining salt and pepper, Worcestershire sauce, Cajun seasoning, Tabasco and thyme. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Return chicken to pan, add hot chicken broth, and simmer covered over low heat for about 30 minutes or until chicken is tender and rice has absorbed all liquid.

Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with chicken arranged on top of rice.

Makes 4 servings.

Celebration Pound Cake


3 cups sugar

¾ lb. (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

6 large eggs, at room temperature

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. butter extract

3 cups all-purpose flour

½ tsp. salt

1 cup 2% milk

Powdered sugar, for dusting


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Generously spray a 12-cup Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray. I like Baker’s Joy with flour.

Cream sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating for 45 seconds after each addition. Add vanilla and butter extracts and beat an additional 30 seconds.

Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Add ½ of flour mixture to butter mixture and mix on low speed just until blended. Add ½ cup milk and beat on low speed just until blended. Scrape sides of bowl with spatula after each addition. Repeat with remaining flour and milk.

Pour batter into prepared baking pan. Smooth top with spoon or spatula.

Bake for 1 hour and 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean and the cake is just starting to pull away from sides of pan.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before inverting onto a cake plate or stand. Allow to cool completely before serving.

Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.

Makes 12-14 servings.

Aimee Broussard is a Southern food blogger and award-winning cookbook author. Seen on QVC, Rachael Ray and more, she is a self-proclaimed accidental entrepreneur with a penchant for porches and sweet hospitality. Find her online at