Boudin. If you’re not from Louisiana, you probably haven’t had it and you probably can’t pronounce it. Boo-dan. But you have to cut about half of the n off of dan.
Sure, at first glance, a box of boudin may look like a carton full of soft-boiled geriatric, uh, weinies. But I promise you won’t put anything tastier in your mouth. (I’m talking about the boudin, you perv.)
What is boudin? No, it is not a blood sausage, you show-off with your little bit of knowledge of French food. Okay. It can be a blood sausage — in French cuisine. But we’re talking Cajun food and you’ll have to admit that doesn’t look like a box of blood sausages. Boudin is a mixture of ground pork, onions, peppers, rice and other seasonings put in a sausage casing. And it’s delicious.
Boudin can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner. When I’m visiting Louisiana, I always try to get one breakfast of boudin, cracklins and ice-cold Coca-Cola. It does NOT get any better than that. (And, yes, it’s as unhealthy as it sounds).
Anyway, why am I talking about boudin? Because I’m hungry and I miss it. And because a friend of mine from high school, when he saw that I had a book called First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival, let me know that he was involved with a real festival (of sorts).
It’s called the Boudin Cook-Off No. 2* and is being held at Parc Sans Souci in downtown Lafayette on Oct. 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. “The cook-off brings together the top 20 boudin makers from across Louisiana and there will be over 1,700 pounds of boudin to sample in three categories (Traditional, Specialty, and Unlinked). . . . Festivities include live music (The Specklers and Thomas ‘Big Hat’ Fields and his Footstompin Zydeco Band), free fun jumps, a Cochon de Lait from Al Simon’s Cajun Microwaves with free samples, a free ‘boudin toss,’ a boudin eating contest, and more.”
As they say in South Louisiana, “Hot damn!” Don’t even get me started on Cajun Microwaves. Let’s just say that a Cajun Microwave makes a starring appearance in my little book. I’m gonna be in New Orleans for a wedding, but I might have to sneak over there.
On the fake festival front, I don’t have a hell of a lot of news about the book. My editor told me that they sold subsidiary rights for Book Club and for large print. What all of this means — aside from the fact that you can buy it for your grandparents when it comes out — I’m not quite sure. It does NOT mean huge piles of money. But it sounds cool.
*By the way, what is it about pork and pork products that makes it okay to actually show the animal grinding, smoking and otherwise cooking itself? Think about it. You see this at barbecue joints all the time. But you don’t drive up to a hamburger joint and see a big picture of a cow grinding itself patties.