Boucherie, Cochon de Lait and Boudin
by Dixie Poche | foreword by Chef John Folse
Hardcover: $32.99 | Paperback: $21.99
When Cajuns of Louisiana gather, the culinary star is generally the pig.
Whether it’s a boucherie, the Cochon de Lait in Mansura or Chef John Folse’s Fête des Bouchers, where an army of chefs steps back three hundred years to demonstrate how to make blood boudin and smoked sausage, ever-resourceful Cajuns use virtually every part of the pig in various savory delights. Author Dixie Poche traverses Cajun country to dive into the recipes and stories behind regional specialties, such as boudin, cracklings, gumbo and hogs head cheese. From the Smoked Meats Festival in Ville Platte to Thibodaux’s Bourgeois Meat Market, where miles of boudin have been produced since 1891, this is a mouthwatering dive into Cajun devotion to the pig.
Review presented by Books Along the Teche
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Artist: Jean-Luc Toussaint
Available at: NUNU Arts and Culture Collective, Arnaudville
During his previous trips to Louisiana, Jean-Luc Toussaint, a French artist from the Caribbean town of Schoelcher, Marinique, created several metal pieces that are now exhibited in NUNU Arts and Culture Collective in Arnaudville. Toussaint
is a cultural ambassador of his French-speaking arts community (the fourth-largest commune in the French overseas department of Martinique) and last visited Acadiana in 2019 for an artist-in-residence exchange. In addition to his metalwork, Toussaint is also a master mask artist and shares his island’s Mardi Gras traditions in workshops across south Louisiana. More of his work can be found at jean-luc-toussaint.com or facebook.com/ JeanLucToussaintPimentaDaCosta.
Artist: Maureen R. Latiolais
Medium: Stained Glass
Work: Sunrise on the Bayou
Available at: Paul Schexnayder Studio + Gallery
Maureen Latiolais frequently refers to her work in stained glass as a “second act.” Although she was introduced to the medium in high school, she has only recently been able to immerse herself in her art, since retiring from a teaching position in special education. From her studio “she shed” in New Iberia, she grinds each piece of glass down to the desired shape, wraps the edges in foil, then solders the pieces to meld them together into colorful, lively depictions of landscapes, dragonflies, sealife, frogs and abstracts. Her “Sunrise on the Bayou” piece shows the drama and beauty of an Acadiana bayou, with moss-draped trees, cypress knees and the setting sun reflecting off the water. Latiolais exhibits her work exclusively at Paul Schexnayder Studio + Gallery, but can also be contacted via Facebook.
Artist: Karma and the Killjoys
Available at: Most streaming services
Although piano-rock band Karma and the Killjoys is currently based out of Baton Rouge, singer-songwriter Sophia Brazda and some other group members are Lafayette natives. Sophia Brazda, in particular, is probably a familiar name to many in the Acadiana area. The singer-songwriter is a past Acadiana Lifestyle Bright From the Start kid and she’s been busy making a name for herself in the music industry, including accolades received for writing the lyrics and melody for the band’s well-received newest single “Amelia.” Sydni Myers and Rain Scott-Catoire share the vocals spotlight with Brazda, while Michael Blount, Matt Hawkins and Thomas Vercher round out the talented group.
For more information on Karma and the Killjoys and their music, visit their Facebook page.