How do you go about honoring a sausage? For those of us who prefer to ignore the sometimes less than palatable origins of sausage, this practice might seem counterintuitive. For LaPlace, a town that prides itself on being the Andouille Capitol of the World, an entire three-day festival is necessary to fete the links. Andouille is a heavily smoked pork variety that typically takes a backseat in many dishes, acting as a flavor but discreetly deferring on top billing. Not so at the Andouille Festival, where the sausage reigns supreme
Merely consuming sausage does not a festival make. There must be youth and beauty to honor the meaty morsel. St. John Parish holds a yearly beauty pageant to elect the next Junior Miss Andouille. Men prove themselves through arm wrestling competitions. Theres an andouille 5K, which participants can run or walk. And for those in need of more pork, visitors can sidle up to a plate of hog cracklin(fried pig skin) or boudin (basically whats left of the pig when the good stuff has been taken). If for nothing else, you can be reassured that no part of the pig will go to waste at sausage fest. Respect the pig, worship the sausage.
The festival also features live music, carnival rides, a gumbo cook-off and more.
Rest assured, the trek to Laplace for the Andouille Festival this weekend is well worth the short drive. The festival runs tonight and all day Saturday and Sunday at the St. John Community Center (2900 Hwy. 51). But vegetarians might want to sit this one out. Anna Marschalk-Burns