Monday, November 24, 2014

Eating BIG in Detroit Pt. 3

Eating like a local:
Regional food specialties

- More Old School stops from the D and it's surrounding suburbs 

Thanksgiving week is here and the Chicago Bears are headed to Detroit to play the Lions on Thursday night. As you may or may not know we've eaten deep into the D. So now's the perfect time to check out part three in this series of one of the most fascinating cities in America. Detroit might be bankrupt but the good old timers aren't going anywhere. So next report up! You can check out Part One HERE and then Part Two HERE. Also rec'd is the old school hamburgers of Detroit special which can be seen HERE. While it's true that many of the suburbs have started to flourish as people move to them there's still some places sticking around the city, today we get a little mix of each.

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The Stone House Bar: Since the 1940's in Highland Park, MI
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Bode's Corned Beef House

Plymouth, MI

We start i n the suburbs with a couple popular style of sandwiches served in these parts. You don't need me to tell you what Bode's Corned Beef House is doing but I'll go ahead and tell you anyway in case you mistake it for an Irish pub, they're a diner with housemade corned beef. According to an article I found online they've been around since 1959 and have a few generations of loyal customers some of whom I remember being there on my visit. The corned beef hash was a little off as far as meat to potato ratio (more potato than meat) but still enjoyable while the thinly sliced sandwich on rye was quite satisfying. Cool neighborhood place.

Corned Beef Hash and a Corned beef w/ Swiss Sandwich
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Lefty's Cheesesteak Hoagies 

Livonia, MI 

This area of Michigan has lots of cheesesteak stops but they're called hoagies and tend to come with a chopped cherry pepper spread as well as white cheddar cheese. This is the second one I stopped in at and just like the first place in Part Two I really enjoyed the sandwich from here. Finely diced meat, melted salty cheese and that zing from the pepper blend make sandwiches craveworthy.

Cheesesteak Hoagie with Hot Peppers
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Chin Tiki

The once famous Chin Tiki was opened up in 1967 in downtown Detroit and had a nice little run until it's closing in 1980. If you were someone when visiting Detroit during it's prime you went there. A favorite of Muhammad Ali and Joe DiMaggio it was the 2nd operation of Marvin Chin who ran Chin's Chop Suey since it's opening in 1955 until it's closing in the middle 80's.

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RIP (Pic borrowed from Water Winter Wonderland)

The tiki bar has been abandoned since it closed with the exception of a brief stint as a set in the movie '8 Mile' with Eminem. "♫I got an Oscar but I'm still a grouch, I use it as a door stop and a prop for the broken leg for the couch ♫". While pictures of the place taken by urban explorers reveal many of the stuff inside was left behind, alot of it also went to Chin's Chop Suey in Livonia which was opened by Marvin's son. I guess some also went to the production crew of the movie without the owners consent.

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Locals Favorite in Livonia, MI

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a peak inside

We've had some discussion over at LTHforum about the American Chinese regional favorite called many things including crispy almond chicken and war sue gai the latter of which the spellings can vary. The exact origin of War Sue Gai is kind of murky but it's birth almost certainly traces back to Detroit or maybe Columbus, Ohio. It's a hugely popular dish in both these places. At Chin's they list both almond chicken and also "War Shue Gai" on their menu. You can see the difference in the listed two in the picture I took below.

Chicken Offerings

Egg rolls to start were awful. Literally fried wonton stuffed to the brim with bean sprouts they weren't worth eating after one bite was taken. I saw a girl in college from Columbus who's parents owned a Chinese restaurant and her families almond chicken recipe was always welcomed by me and my roommates. But Chin's takes the dish to another level with the addition of veggies and pork. I probably liked this alot more than I should have as I've had urges for it ever since. The chicken was batter fried to perfection and the sauce wasn't all that gloppy and actually had some pretty good flavor. The plate could easily feed three so I was left with leftovers which were later left at a bar somewhere. Too bad because I wanted some later that night.

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War Shue Gui aka War Sue Gai

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a look in the light
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Scotty Simpson's Fish & Chips

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Detroit (Since 1950)

It's not surprising to find a chippy of this caliber in the Motor City considering it's right across the river from Ontario, Canada where every town has one. They know their Fish and Chips across the border 'eh! But you don't have to cross the Ambassador bridge to get the good stuff. Scotty Simpsons has been a neighborhood staple since 1950. The current owner started cooking there in 1960 and can still be found greeting his customers as they enter.

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Standing in line

Like pretty much every other old time place in this city, Scotty's is bare bones. You can feel the grease on the walls which only adds to the charm as you wait in line watching the action happen. Chippy's should only have few things on their menu, its all centered around fried fish. Lots have just that and fries which if you want to be considered good must come freshly cut. Scotty's actually has a large menu for a shack with perch and smelt joining frog legs, chicken, shrimp, and their specialty fish and chips. Even so, perfection is found here my friends. This is a vintage Bristol parked inside the Ford Motor Company lot.

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Sensational Fish n' Chips
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Duly's Coney Island 

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Detroit (Since 1921)

Duly's is virtually the same today as it was when they first opened. You cant go thru this city without seeing a Coney shop on each and every block. I think Duly's is the prime example of atmosphere at these places. A lunch counter where people come to at all hours of the day to eat. We saw weirdos and teenage girls alongside drunks and old timers all in there at once.

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After Midnight Crowd

Some Coney Dog shop history buffs will tell you that it was the Greek Immigrants who started these stands and then Albanian ones followed, but Duly's proves them wrong. Duly Seit came from Albania and worked at his place until his death in 1963. Coney Shops dont just sell hot dogs. Most offer a nice sized selection of the usual suspects you'd find in a diner. Breakfast is big as are burgers, sandwiches etc... The chili cheese fries come with lots of fanfare here but being my first trip I had to go Coney. Great sauce, awful dog. Just like with the Vienna beef options here, if you don't use the natural casing Koegel wiener there, it's not a worthy option.

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Coney Everything at Duly's Place
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Hamtramck Coney Island

Hamtramck, MI

This is a worthy stop for a Coney. It too had the atmosphere down pat. I feel like most anyone working at any of the Coney Shops I've been too has been there since their youth and wont be gone until their time to leave earth comes. It's a lifetime job. A couple of old timers at the grill with a old regular sitting down and a younger guy taking orders. Friendly folks who know that the only way to go is the natural casing Koegel wiener made specifically for Coney style hot dogs.

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Coney Everything at Hamtramack Coney Island
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Srodek's Deli

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Hamtramck, MI (Since 1981)

Not far down the block from here is Srodek's Polish and European Delicatessen. The neighborhood had a heavy amount of Polish Settlers come, some of which are still around including these guys and their old time customers who were inside speaking in native tongue with on our visit. If its an Eastern Europe favorite, they probably have it here. Everything looked good. The house made pierogi stuffed with farmers cheese and bacon and peach apricot kolaczki I took back home with me were great.

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a peak inside

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Meats in display case

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Smoked Sausage Case
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More Middle Eastern eats in Dearborn

Neither Cederland nor Al Ameer or most other places were open on a late night trek down Warren avenue one evening. However each block did have a spot or two catering to the drinking and just off work crowds. Al Basha is a popular late night sub sandwich and pizza place for the college kids. They do a steady delivery business as witnessed by the countless phone calls coming in. I'm guessing their namesake Sandwich is favored with plenty of booze beforehand.

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Drunken Eats in Dearborn

A smashed chicken breast is cooked until crispy on the outside and goes into a sesame seed roll with french fries, pickles and TONS of garlic mayo. The excess of the mayo made it almost inedible. The fresh baked bread was fantastic though. A few doors down is The Prince's? Bakery.

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Also on Warren avenue

Here they had a steady flow of grab and go customers and those in there knew what was up. I got a meat pie, a cheese filled pastry pocket and a spinach one for $3 total and each was fantastic. Best three bucks I've spent in sometime. I wanted more immediately.


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a peak inside
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Bode's Corn Beef House
280 N Main St
Plymouth Township, MI 48170
(734) 453-1883

Lefty's Grill
29407 Six Mile Rd
Livonia, MI 48152
(734) 522-0555

Chin's Chop Suey
28205 Plymouth Rd
Livonia, MI 48150
(734) 421-1627

Scotty Simpsons Fish & Chips
22200 Fenkell St
Detroit, MI 48223
(313) 533-0950

Duly's Place
5458 W Vernor Hwy
Detroit, MI 48209
(313) 554-3076

Hamtramck Coney Island
9741 Joseph Campau Ave
Hamtramck, MI 48212
(313) 873-4569

Srodek Deli
9601 Joseph Campau Ave
Hamtramck, MI 48212
(313) 871-8080

Al Basha
10626 W Warren Ave
Dearborn, MI 48126
(313) 846-9684

Princess Bakery
10622 W Warren Ave
Dearborn, MI 48126
(313) 584-4636 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Beef at Bari

-Got Beef? Italian Beef
As seen on 'What's your Beef?'

It's been a long time, I shouldn't of left you, without a dope beef to get too. Long time coming for today's stop as I've been eating here since my youth. Bari Foods is one of Chicago's most well known sandwich purveyors. They're an independent grocery store/deli that specializes in Italian items. I love a beef with hot on a frigid winter day which we had here recently. I know I've eaten a Bari beef before, that said I must of just forgot about it because it's been at least five years since I ordered one.

Photo outside circa early 2000's

Results? Very good! In fact I've been by twice in recent weeks, the first time was better but the second time was still good. The first visit I likened the beef more to the Nawlins style roast beef used in a po-boy (ala Parkway) than Italian beef but that doesn't bother me. It's got rich beef flavor ala perfectly cooked beef roast and holds together with the bread really well. I never ask for a cup of gravy on the side but decided to see what they gave me and I got a cup of the au jus that was more like debris, which was awesome. They could make a killer gravy bread or even better, a debris po-boy. Throw some of it on their bread with lettuce, tomatoes, pickles and mayo and you'd have one of the best po-boys in all of the Midwest. I cant place them on my 1st team just yet because I need to eat it a handful of times to make sure consistency is there but they've certainly earned a tryout.

Beef with Hot from Bari

Rating Scale 5/5

beef: 4
bread: 4
gravy: 5
hot peppers: 4


Score: 17/20

Bari Italian Foods
1120 W Grand Ave # 1
Chicago, IL 60642-6048
(312) 666-0730

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Louisiana Famous Fried Chicken

-Grubbing in Chicago  
Fast Food via Los Angeles

Recently rolling around on assignment a place called Louisiana Fried Chicken caught my eye in the New City neighborhood. I decided to pull over and do a little online research. While there's plenty of fried chicken shacks on the city's southside, more times than not they're Harold's, maybe a J&J now and then so I was curious who this newcomer was?

Newly opened chicken shack in New City

Turns out this is the first Illinois location of a popular Los Angeles chain. So the "about us" tab on their website goes . . . The founder had decade of experience with Jack-in-the-Box and Pioneer Chicken franchises before deciding to start his own. After a few trips to Louisiana for research purposes he opened the first store in August of 1976 in Los Angeles and by 1979 there were ten company stores. Joe sold his stores and began licensing the trademark and recipes to independent operators. He is now happily retired. I got a chance to chit chat with the owners of this location and they were really nice and excited about what's been going on thus far. With a CHA housing across the street and not many other eating options in the area I guess they've been packed since opening.

Chicken Box

I decided to go with a two piece box (dark) which comes one side and a biscuit. Not bad. The chicken wasn't freshly fried upon ordering but it had come out a few minutes before. I noticed quite a few black specs in it from ground pepper and enjoyed the side of red beans and rice as well as the biscuit but wouldn't go out of my way to eat here again. Also popular are their po' boys and signature strawberry slushies which I would of tried had it not been in single digit temps. Best part was their hot sauce which had that tang I try and find when trying new bottles. While I don't think Harold has a new challenger in the city's fried chicken game, they can certainly make their own name.

Two Piece Basket

Louisiana Famous Fried Chicken
215 W Pershing Rd
Chicago, IL 60609
(773) 675-8387

Monday, November 17, 2014

Dove's Luncheonette

-Grubbing in Chicago  
New to the 'Scene'

Needed a place to eat near the busy Wicker Park intersection and decided to give the new Dove's Luncheonette a try recently. In case you've been living in a pothole somewhere this is the new Southern inspired Mexican diner from the One Off Hospitality Group, owners of Big Star next door. Maybe because the Bears had just played or maybe because there is no patio and the day was beautiful, who knows but it was tame with plenty of places to sit. I like what they did with the inside as it's it's not too decked out, pretty minimal actually, it feels like a diner so that's good.

Sitting at the counter overlooking Damen avenue

Props for keeping the drinks in the Big Star price-range of $8. I don't know about y'all but I'm enjoying my nights out less and less upon getting my bill loaded with $13 cocktails. Believe me I'm not cheap but, damn those add up. Good sippers here as expected from the team also behind Violet Hour across the street. As far as food prices go they didn't exactly stick with them relative to Big Star. Then again these are plates of food and not tacos or chips with guacamole to share. Still these are small plates of food. She tried the chicken fried chicken and it came with two pieces of breast meat, looked more like two strips. The flavor profile was there with the chorizo verde gravy along with grilled onions, green beans and peas being a hearty combo but for $15 I want some mashed potatoes underneath at the very least.

Chicken Fried Chicken

I opted for the red chile chicken enchiladas and went West Texas style with a fried egg on top. Described as corn tortillas and roasted chicken thighs with guajillo-ancho chile sauce, queso oaxaca, queso fresco, cilantro, onions and pickled serrano chiles these sounded like they could please if I was able to look past the $14 pricetag. I wish I could've but I would've been more satisfied if these were around $10. I liked the fact they used chopped thigh meat and the flavor profile of the sauce was similar to Big Stars popular panza taco but they weren't rolled tight enough and the dish eventually morphed into the texture of a baked casserole. It was hard to get a bite of it all in one. Maybe they should go all out West Texas style and stack them. I do suggest liberal use of their homemade hot sauces and salsa, I thought all of them were great and useful in taking the dish a step up. More cheese and sauce wouldn't of hurt either. Another thing they  could of used were some rice and beans by their side. In the end it's on you to decide for yourself. I wont rush back, but I'm sure I'll be back.

Red Chile Enchiladas with a fried egg added on

Dove's Luncheonette
1545 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 645-4060
Website

Dove's Luncheonette on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 14, 2014

Cajun Meatball Stew

--Tailgatin' and how to make mofos start playa hatin' (Recipes)

Sticking with the Cajun theme as I've been on a kick with it since returning from Louisiana. Before I went into Cajun Country I did some online research and checked out the menus at a few places of interest. Many of the lunch counters there have a daily menu so only certain things are available on certain days. One of the common meals I was seeing was meatball stew. It intrigued me but I wasn't going to be there on a day when the places were making it so I decided to try my own spin and came up with this recipe where Creole Italian meets Cajun Country. It's part stew and part gumbo.

Creole Meatballs

Creole Meatballs

    3 LBS ground beef
    1/2 cup oatmeal or toasted breadcrumbs
    2 eggs
    3 cloves garlic (minced)
    1/2 onion (finely chopped)
    1/2 cup sliced green onion
    3 TBPS Worcestershire
    Creole Seasoning to taste (2 TBSP+)

Directions

Mix everything together in a bowl and form into balls. I like to make mine about the size of a golf ball, maybe a little bit bigger. I just use a 1/2 cup measure to scoop out the meat and then pat it onto a ball. Proceed to brown meatballs in some oil in the same pot you'll cook the stew in. Place them to the side when done.

Creole Meatballs Cooked and Ready

Gumbo/Stew

     2 TBSP cooking oil
     2 links of andouille sausage (diced)
     1 bell pepper (chopped)
     2 onions (chopped)
     3 stalks celery (chopped)
     4 carrots (diced)
     3 cloves garlic (minced)
     1 cup dark Cajun Roux (Recipe HERE)
     7-8 Cups Beef Broth (can use chicken broth or water if need be)
     2 Bay Leaves
     Cajun seasoning to taste (2 TBSP+)
     2 tsp of file powder  
     1/2 cup fresh sliced green onions, tops included

Directions

Carrots and Andouille cook first (saute and set aside)

Next up add your Holy Trinity (onions, peppers, celery) and saute until soft, proceed to add the carrots, andouille and the roux, then the seasoning and let cook five minutes

Next up empty the beef broth into the pot and throw the bay leaves and meatballs in there too

Let it cook on medium low for a couple hours and you'll be good to go, add file powder when pot is turned off and serve with white rice and fresh chopped green onions on top

Always better the next day!
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See ya next time @chibbqking

Monday, November 10, 2014

A Day in Acadiana

Eating like a local:
Regional food specialties
 
- Thru the Heart of Cajun Country

I finally made it to one of my most coveted food regions last month. One of my best friends is getting married and his bachelor party was in New Orleans. While most people were flying in Friday afternoon, myself and another friend flew in Thursday. Upon landing I picked up a rental car and drove myself around to lots of food stops while waiting for him to get in later that evening. We'd spend Thursday night eating and drinking in Nola before sleeping off a few hours until around 7a Friday morning when we awoke for a daytrip to Cajun Country.

Attack of the Giant Crawfish!

The ride to Lafayette from New Orleans is two hours, although it took longer on the way back in with lots of rush hour traffic near the bridge over the Mississippi in Baton Rouge. This gave us a good four hours to eat. That said I feel like I barely scratched the surface as I only made it to maybe a third of the spots I had listed. Though you know you were doing damage when Chase bank calls wondering if your card has been stolen due to the fact it was being used continuously at many food stops in different towns. I feel like this is one of the must eat regions of food travel. The south is loaded with traditions in the kitchen and lots of culture outside of it, one of the richest trails resides right here. Crawfish season was not in swing so instead I focused in on boudin.

Fresh Seafood available for sale everywhere

"What is boudin? Great question! Boudin (Pronounced Boo-Dan) is one of most unique, tasty and distinctly uncorrupted regional specialties in America. Basically, boudin is a combination of cooked rice, pork, liver, onions, green peppers, and seasonings. The mixture is pulverized (to some degree) in a meat grinder before being stuffed into a sausage casing. It is then steamed--or otherwise heated--for on-the-spot snacking. Ahh, but these are truly just the basics. Folks around here are passionate about their boudin, and each recipe is a variation on the foundational ingredients. The devotion to boudin results in innumerable other uses, recipe tweaks, or preparations for the meat and rice mixture. Boudin Balls, Smoked Boudin, or Seafood are just a few of the variations you’re likely to find." - From the Cajun Boudin Trail Website. Away we go.
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Poche's Meat Market

Breaux Bridge, LA

One of the most well known stops in the area, this place has been featured in everything from roadfood to Saveur. They've been serving up authentic Cajun cuisine and meats since 1962.

"Everything on the hog is good. From the rooter to the tooter."

Tons to choose from...

The Cafeteria in back

Breaux Bridge is considered the crawfish capitol of the world, thus they eat it all year long. When it's not in-season the main form of consuming it is in etouffee and other stews. This would be one of the specials on the cafeteria board on my visit thus I knew what I was getting. First off though was the crawfish boudin which I thought was just ok. I'm not a big fan of seafood sausage. The etouffee did nothing short of amaze, had I not stopped in at the next place it would of been the best I ever had. Loaded with real Louisiana crawfish and served with both a crawfish dressing and also traditional rice dressing on the side, I wish this was available regularly to me. Nothing like it in Chicago.

Crawfish Etouffee
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Glenda's Creole Kitchen

Breaux Bridge, LA

Next stop is a short two minute ride from the last stop. I've wanted to visit Glenda's Creole Kitchen since I first read up on it over at Roadfood. So it's been on my to get-too list for some time.

an ode to the local legend

Glenda's serves good old fashioned home cooked meals that will bring you back to another time, before Zatarain's instant jambalaya came to town. Every dish is cooked using only the best local ingredients. Nothing frozen here folks. In fact when we first got there around opening time they hadn't unlocked the door and we almost missed them, luckily the lady peeling fresh potatoes for tomorrow came running out and yelled us down that they were open. Lucky me because this might of been my favorite meal from the five days I was down in Louisiana. First up was the fresh made tea. I'm not a big sweet drinker, rarely drink pop and prefer my tea unsweetened. However I felt it was my civic duty to order a homemade peach tea and damn me if it wasn't the most refreshing drink I could of asked for on a 90 degree day where the temperature was still climbing.

Fresh Made Teas

As for the food, this was a tough call. Just like at Poche's they had a "stew" this one made with pork that looked like it had all sorts of flavors packed into it, it was calling my name but I quickly pointed out to myself that we weren't far from the Gulf and this isn't always the case. We did a combo plate of their crawfish etouffee and the crab stew. Man oh man, I would walk 100 miles thru the impending polar vortex for this...in my underwear nonetheless. Their etouffee was much darker than Poche's and because of this it had some insane depth as far as flavor. Plump crawfish tales with some potent sauce made from seafood broth which was also noticed in the crab stew. I live in one of the great eating cities in all of the world yet I'm envious of the folks that get to stop into here and order some home cooked Creole food via the drive thru as if it's just another lunch. Great place.

Crawfish Etouffee + Shrimp and Crab Stew
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Charlie-T's Specialty Meats

 Breaux Bridge, LA

We drove past this place twice as it sits in an old rundown pink building that looks as though it may be vacant. By the time we were paying up, a lunch rush of about 20 blue collar workers came in for some food. Much like Chicagoan's with beefs and hot dogs, each local from around this way has a different place they say makes the best boudin. All I did was list each and everyone of them and then narrow them down based on location, allowing me to get to as many as I can. Another plus is the fact you can buy as many links as want. As seen in the pic up above many of these spots sell the boudin ready to eat from rice cookers where it sits in warm water until ordered. Charlie-T's makes it's traditional recipe as well as a chicken based one.

Pork and Chicken Boudin

The first time I ever tried boudin I didn't know you were supposed to take it out of the casing. It was also some mail ordered stuff that was previously frozen leading me to believe it was like eating a Chicago pizza from the freezer. So I was excited to both try the real stuff and eat it the proper way while doing so. You squeeze the mixture out and can eat it as is or throw it on some crackers or a sandwich as you'll soon see. Upon my first bite of Charlie's boudin I knew I was eating the real thing and I knew I loved it. Spicier than the rest this was a fine example. I didn't care for the chicken one as much, like most other chicken sausages I've tried it was a tad too dry for my liking.

Chicken Boudin
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Johnson's Boucaniere

Lafayette, LA

There's lots of food stops to choose from in the Cajun Capitol so I had some tough choices to make. My plan was to hit as many stops as possible and in doing so going to the quick counter service establishments that many locals frequent for lunch. This was obviously one as there was a nice ongoing crowd coming in one by one. The family behind the counter seemed to know most of them and with it had a hankering that I wasn't from around there, ok maybe the fact I was taking pictures is what gave it away. I told them our deal and they were ecstatic to have us.

Menu on the Wall

Many of the recipes here have been used since the early 1900's. They became a local legend starting in 1937 when they were using these recipes at the world-famous Johnson's Grocery located in Eunice, Louisiana. It's there that many say was one of the first spots in the country to sell boudin. Obviously this was in-store but one of the newer food crazes in the area was too. Grilled cheese spread with boudin is popping up at lots of spots and Johnson's was said to have one of the best. It seemed like every other order had a Parrain sandwich included and once I tried mine I understood why. The melted cheese mashed up with their legendary boudin in between a smashed/toasted bun was all that and then some.

Parrain Sandwich (Boudin Grilled Cheese w/ a side of BBQ sauce)

The boudin was also a big winner. I thought it was the best of the bunch we tried. The casing had that snap that you could hear upon breaking. Inside was the original blend of pork/rice/liver that was served in Eunice way back when. I noticed extra bits of green onion which I'll always welcome and tasted them mixed in. Mardi Gras in my mouth.

My favorite boudin of the day, loaded with green onion
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Billy's Boudin & Cracklins

Scott, LA

Next town up! That would be Scott, Louisiana aka the "Boudin Capitol of the World" as there's a handful of longstanding shops in this town of 8,000 which hosts their annual Boudin Festival each April. I'd read up on Billy's which one article mentioned as a relatively newcomer to the boudin game. They could of fooled me as the wait was a good 20 people deep. Truth be told, stopping here cost me a couple other stops as we waited a good thirty minutes for the food, but how could I not? None of the other places had a line like this.

Waiting in line

Happily for me it lived up to the hype. This is your spot for some amazing Cajun snacks starting with both the namesake boudin and cracklins. Aside from their original recipe they also offer a smoked boudin which was mesmerizing in it's own rights. I enjoyed both immensely but it's the other snack from here I'll remember most.

Regular (L) and Smoked (R) Boudin

You'll see boudin balls sold at most every stop in town, they're made by molding some boudin into a ball and breading it before a trip to the deep fryer. Don't eat any of them without trying Billy's recipe first. Once you have one of his you wont want to waste the calories on any other. Here they're about double in size than the other spots thus double in price. They come with a surprise treat inside. Melted pepperjack cheese takes these to the podium. Also insanely good for a quick bite were their personal crawfish pies, another common Acadian snack. The cracklins? As good as they get. Made fresh throughout the day these were still warm when I first tried them so instead of tasting like a crunchy snack ala pork rinds out of the bag, these were more like something found on the snack section of a trendy cocktail spot, both crispy and juicy. Mouthwatering.

Crawfish Pie and Pepperjack Stuffed Boudin Ball

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The insides

CRACKlins
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Don's Specialty Meats

Scott, LA

Don's is the big boy in town. They sit in a large lot and from what I read there's always cars parked there as traffic inside is non-stop. They double as a full scale butcher and have local spices and seasonings and some other stuff like hunting gear for you to shop for while you grab some boudin and cracklins. We all need a local butcher like this.

a peak inside

Separate Counter for the signature items

My friend thought the boudin from here was the best of the trip and truth be told I loved them all so I was happy to eat this throughout the rest of the weekend as he bought a bunch for the fridge at the bachelor pad. It was greasy in a good way, moist and filled with lots of pork and some green onion to give it a nice color. Rice was separated and plump, nothing mushy about it. I was also told they make a mean Cajun meat pie and agreed with the recommendation. Pretty much the opposite of a pasty as the filling was aggressively seasoned.

Cajun Meat Pie

Don's Homemade Boudin

Excellent Batch
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The Best Stop

Scott, LA

Many of the locally owned supermarkets around town also make and sell their own boudin for customers to snack on. One of the more established stops is known as the Best Stop. They've been at it since 1986 when they first opened in the building pictured up above. Now they have a place next door that's sells all sorts of wonderful Cajun meat treats, I think their tasso might be the best of the three I brought home. The boudin balls were ok, they all were after Billy's, but the boudin was a real pleaser. You can check out this interview with Southern Foodways for more on them.

Boudin and Boudin Balls

14 Time Acadiana Times Readers Choice Winner
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Hebert's Deli

Breaux Bridge, LA

Last stop before heading back to Nola was this place which I spied from the gas station. I had them on my list as they were said to make a really nice boudin, this was true, also talked about was an old Cajun favorite of BBQ tasso with mayo on white bread. I stepped inside and had a chat with the friendly lady behind the counter as she made my sandwich. In doing so I found myself wishing I had more time and getting excited for the day I get a chance to return. I got to alot of spots on my list considering I was only there for four hours, but for every place I made it into there were at least two I didn't get to try. Not to mention all the spots I saw when driving by. See you again soon.

Tasso BBQ Sandwich
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Poche's Market
3015 Main Hwy
Breaux Bridge, LA 70517
(337) 332-2108

Glenda's Creole Kitchen
3232 Louisiana 31
Breaux Bridge, LA 70517
(337) 332-0294

Charlie-T's Specialty Meats
530 Berard St
Breaux Bridge, LA 70517
(337) 332-2426

Johnson's Boucaniere
1111 St John St
Lafayette, LA 70501
(337) 269-8878

Billy's Boudin & Cracklins
523 Apollo Rd
Scott, LA 70583
(337) 232-1114

Don's Specialty Meats
730 I 10 S Frontage Rd
Scott, LA 70583
(337) 234-2585

The Best Stop
615 Louisiana 93
Scott, LA 70583
(337) 233-5805

Hebert's Deli
1101 Grand Pointe Ave
Breaux Bridge, LA 70517
(337) 332-6000

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