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While the season of Lent (Ash Wednesday through Easter Sunday) is about reflection, moderation and giving up indulgences, New Orleanians do not have to sacrifice good food to do so. NOLA's top restaurants and chefs are offering a variety of Lenten specials and easy-to-make home recipes, certain to make your Fridays meatless and your palate happy.

At Trinity, Executive Chef Michael Isolani is serving a selection of seafood dishes including Grilled Octopus & Chickpea Dip - pickled red onion, pepper oil and toast points; Seared Snapper with bok choy, satsuma butter, pecans and basil and Fruitti di Mare - squid ink farfalle with shrimp, lobster, mussels and snow peas. Trinity's variety of oyster dishes are also perfect for Lent and include Baked, Smoked, Fried, Raw and Broiled with cayenne aioli, panko breadcrumbs and flying fish roe. Trinity is located at 1117 Decatur Street in New Orleans' French Quarter. Reservations can be made at Telephone: (504) 325-5789; 


Seafood haven Grand Isle's Executive Chef Ryan Haigler has created a bounty of meatless options. Appetizers include Creole Tuna Tartare with preserved lime crème fraiche; PEI Mussels in a saffron wine-chili broth, served with malt vinegar aioli and olive salad crostini; and Sardine Dip, served up in a jar with Steen's cane vinaigrette and hot sauce crisps. Entrees include Grilled Swordfish with roasted cauliflower mash and Abita Amber & oregano vinaigrette; Fisherman's Stew; and Chili Butter Baked Gulf Fish with a popcorn rice cake, braised Covey Rise greens and heirloom tomato sofrito. Grand Isle is located at 575 Convention Center Boulevard, on the Fulton Street promenade in New Orleans. Telephone: (504) 520-8530;


Diners can enjoy modern Creole and southern cuisine at Annunciation. Executive Chef Jacob Cureton is offering both seafood delights and vegetarian options for those refraining from meat. Shareable starters include Crab Cakes with lemon and cress; Beets with pecans, goat cheese and orange. Large plates include Sweet Corn & Kale Risotto with jumbo lump crab and smoked tomato vinaigrette; Gulf Drum with sweet potatoes, sautéed kale and moutarde beurre blanc and Cureton's signature Seared Yellowfin Tuna with Creole fried black rice, sweet potato hot sauce and his secret Steel sauce. Annunciation is located at 1016 Annunciation Street in New Orleans. For reservations, please visit or call (504) 568-0245.

At Compère Lapin, guests can enjoy Chef Nina Compton's Caribbean-Italian-Louisianan cuisine with savory seafood specials certain to make diners forget about meat. Begin with signature Conch Croquettes with pickled pineapple tartar sauce. Other selections include Black Drum with beurre blanc, squash and caviar; Scialatielli with clams and chili; and a Caribbean Seafood Pepper Pot. Compère Lapin is located in The Old No.77 Hotel & Chandlery, 535 Tchoupitoulas Street in the Warehouse District. Telephone: (504) 599-2119;

Download recipes and images at New Orleans Restaurant Lenten Dishes