Boudin
Photo courtesy of missinthekitchen.com
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A Southern Favorite: Boudin

Learn about this Cajun favorite with Julian Brunt

Boudin is a Cajun specialty sausage with roots deep in old French cuisine. The original French version was a blood sausage (better than you might think if you have never tried a good one), but I have no idea how it morphed from the original recipe to today’s boudin.

Today’s boudin is made with varying combinations of pork and rice, and there are innumerable recipes, most reputed to be the best. The problem with boudin is most of it isn’t very good, especially if you are not in Acadiana. If you want the best, you have to travel to Louisiana, with the epicenter being the city of Marks. You will find three of the best boudins on the planet in this small town, and if you are a fan, it is worth the drive.

In Louisiana, the best boudin isn’t found at the grocery store, but more often than not, at a gas station out in the country. It will sit in a pot of hot water and is always eaten with crackers. I visited a local Cajun restaurant a while back and ordered boudin and was shocked that it came to the table fried. Fried boudin is a thing, but it is not the standard cooking method. It is always cooked and kept warm in a pot of hot water.

I tried the Rouses brand boudin the other day and was surprised at how good it was, certainly not the best I have ever had, but pretty darn good. But I do break the rules when I enjoy boudin. I like it simmered in beer, then lightly grilled, and I like it best served with collard greens, hot German mustard, and a cold beer.

I know my Cajun friends would be horrified, but I reserve the right to enjoy boudin the way I like it, at least when not in n Louisiana. If I was in Marks and someone saw me eating boudin with mustard, I would probably be run out of town, although I would find no opposition at all to the cold beer.

I like boudin, and I am thinking of serving rouses to my friends for my birthday celebration that is coming up soon. The party will be on the beach, so I will precook the boudin, then make a fire on the beach and let everyone grill their own, and, yes, I’ll have lots of German mustard and beer to go with it.

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Written by Julian Brunt

Julian Brunt is a food and travel writer that has been writing about the food culture of the Deep South for over a decade. He is the eleventh generation of his family to live in the South, grew up in Europe, traveled extensively for the first fifteen years after graduating from the University of Maryland, University College, Heidelberg, Germany. Today, he's a contributor for multiple publications, including Our Mississippi Home. He's also appeared on Gordon Ramsay's television show, "To Hell and Back in 24 Hours."

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