A Creole in the Country: Cajun cook-off edition
Even in a state renowned for its abundance of festivals, you may not have heard of the Blackpot Festival & Cook-Off. The annual culinary competition at Lafayette's historic Acadian Village has only one requirement: Every dish has to be cooked in a black iron pot. Of course, no Louisiana fest worth its salt would ignore sights and sounds in addition to flavors, and this one is no exception. There's an annual accordion contest, square dancing and plenty of room for RVs and camping.
NolaVie photographer Matt Hinson attended the recent 2013 Blackpot Festival, and offers this collection of sights, sounds, and savorings from the experience. Maybe it will whet your appetite for a trek west, black iron pot in tow, in 2014.
‘My fellow culinary compatriot and I sample some of the best jambalaya either of us had ever tasted.’
‘A little before sundown, saddened as I made my way through the field of cars to leave, I noticed only the sound of the evening birds and Jane Delisa’s fiddle over the breeze as she warmed up to play with her friends later that evening.’
‘Visitors gathered inside the Chapel to fill their souls with Cajun music.’
‘No one is ever too old for a little game of keep away.’
‘These folks came all the way from Canada to get a taste of our culture.’
‘On a beautiful October afternoon in South Louisiana after a few plates of Cajun cookin’, there’s little more to do than kick your boots up on the porch.’
‘We had to stay alert for when a pot would be ready lest the line get too long and the seafood gumbo, or jambalaya, or cracklins, or wild rabbit meatball fricassee run out.’
‘The chef tends his pot to a traditional Cajun tune.’
‘Young Cajuns carryin’ on.’
‘At long last I arrived. The Black Pot Festival at the Acadian Village in Lafayette, Louisiana.’
‘A short detour into downtown Breaux Bridge – Crawfish Capital of the World – to visit Champagne’s Bakery. Alas they were closed. I will be back.’
‘When you see one of these signs, you know you’re fixin’ to pass a good time in Cajun Country.’