"Boudain” is the frequently used Texas spelling for “boudin,” a spicy Cajun sausage popular in Louisiana. Boudin noir consists of pork, pig blood, rice and spices. Boudin blanc or “white sausage” is pork without the blood.
“Boudain balls” or “boudin balls” are this sausage and rice mixture compounded into balls and are cited in print from at least the 1970s.
Boudin (pronounced BOO-dan , IPA [ˈboudañ]) describes a number of different types of sausage used in French, French-Canadian, Creole and Cajun cuisine. Boudin can also refer to a bakery in San Francisco; to Le Boudin, the march of the French Foreign Legion; or to French painter Eugène Boudin. In French slang, “boudin” is used to talk about fat and unattractive girls.
A white sausage made of pork without the blood. In some versions, the sausage is made from a milk or pork rice dressing, much like dirty rice, only more moist, stuffed into pork casings. Pork liver and heart meat are typically included. Rice is more frequently used in Cajun cuisine, whereas the French version tends to use milk, and is therefore generally more delicate than the Cajun variety.
Although the sausage wrap is edible, the stuffing is sometimes squeezed out of one end. In French cuisine, the sausage is sauteed or grilled. The Louisiana version is normally simmered or braised, although coating with oil and slow grilling for tailgating is becoming a popular option in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. In Cajun cuisine another popular variant is crawfish boudin, made with the meat of crawfish tails added to rice. It is often served with cracklins (fried pig skins) and saltine crackers, hot sauce, and ice cold beer. An alligator version is also made, mainly as a novelty. Boudin Blanc dressing is also used to make Boudin balls. The dressing is not stuffed into a casing but formed into a ball, rolled in breading and deep fat fried, similar to the Italian arancini.
. Boudin blanc de Rethel a traditionally made version, which may only contain pork meat, fresh whole eggs and milk, and cannot contain any bread crumbs or flours/starches is protected under EU law with PGI status.
A dark-hued French blood sausage or Cajun sausage containing pork, rice, pig blood, and other ingredients.*
In Louisiana cuisine, a sausage similar to boudin blanc, but with pork blood added to it. It originated from the French boudin noir.*
*Sale difficult in US due to having to have an on site USDA inspector and shelf life.
It is notable that when one refers to ‘boudin’ in the cultural region of Louisiana, Acadiana, it is commonly understood that he/she is referring to Boudin Blanc and no other variant. Boudin Blanc is the staple boudin of this region and is the one most widely consumed. Cajun boudin is available most readily in southern Louisiana, particularly in the Lafayette area, though it may be found nearly anywhere in “Cajun Country” including eastern Texas. There are restaurants devoted to the speciality, though boudin is also sold from rice cookers in convenience stores along Interstate 10. Since boudin freezes well, it is shipped to specialty stores outside the region. Boudin is fast approaching the status of the stars of Cajun cuisine (e.g., jambalaya, gumbo, étouffée, and dirty rice) and has fanatic devotees that travel across Louisiana comparing the homemade numerous varieties.
As availability for boudin grows so does demand. Now a Boudin-Cook-Off has even been organized in Lafayette, Louisiana (the heart of Cajun Country) for October 25, 2008.
Real Cajun Recipes
Boudin or Boudoin
Light brown in color, one of the more popular Cajun sausages is made with rice and pork meat. Eating cracklings with boudoin was almost a must or with cush cush and syrup.
(Dictionary of American Regional English)
A kind of pork sausage; see quot 1979. chiefly LA
1961 PADS 36.11 LA,
1968-69 DARE (Qu. H43, Foods made from parts of the head and inner organs of an animal) InfIL57, French blood sausage—boudin in French; a great favorite inthis area; LA28, Boudin—pork intestines stuffed with rice, seasoning, lights (i.e., lungs), liver, and then boiled; LA33, White boudin—made with rice, some of the insides of hogs; red boudin—made with blood and some of the pork, lots of seasoning and rice; NY28, Boudin—blood sausage; Canadian word.
1979 New Yorker 9 Apr 122/2 LA, Around noon, the Mamou Mardi Gras riders stopped to eat boudin. Boudin is a sort of meat pudding, with pork and rice and spices, packed like sausage into a casing made of hog intestine. It is not merely a ceremonial dish. Any country store in a Cajun parish is likely to keep a steam pot full of homemade boudin, for immediate consumption.
(Oxford English Dictionary)
A blood-sausage, a black pudding; also, force-meat shaped like a sausage. Also white boudin [Fr. boudin blanc], a white pudding.
1845 E. ACTON Mod. Cookery xiii. 279 Small mushrooms..stewed quite tender in butter may be mixed with the boudin after it is taken from the mortar.
1861 MRS. BEETON Bk. Househ. Managem. 472 Boudins of a long shape, the size of the dish they are intended to be served on.
1947 M. LOWRY Under Volcano i. 25 Puddings known as black or blood puddings..boudin, don’t you know, Jacques.
1967 C. DURRELL tr. R. Oliver’s French at Table viii. 316 The hors d’uvre..were..solid stuff: sausage, white boudin, truffled pasties.
25 January 1935, Port Arthur (TX) News, pg. 11, col. 4 ad:
FRESH BOUDIN LIVER SAUSAGE, Lb. 20c
12 December 1959, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Disc Jockey Explains ‘Cajun-Style’ Payola,” sect. 4, pg. 3:
Sonnier’s list included: “About 25 yards of Boudin, a highly seasoned rice sausage;...”
10 March 1965, Port Arthur (TX) News, pg. 14, col. 1 ad:
22 February 1967, Port Arthur (TX) News, “From Stanley’s Boudain Chef: ‘Pop’ Carrier Tells Some of Tasty Dressing’s Secrets,” pg. 16, cols. 5-6:
“Pop” Carrier of Stanley’s two Nite and Day Grocery stores 338 Fifth street and 1449 Houston avenue, is an authority on boudain, the tasty and spicy stuffed dressing that had its beginning in the Louisiana Cajun country.
Carrier, a native of Leonville, La., says that the name “boudain” comes from the Frnehc word “stuff” or “to stuff.” Before the invention of modern stuffing equipment, the ingredients used to make the wonderful “sausage” were crudely put together—but still possessed the great flavor for which it is famous.
Boudain at Stanley’s Nite and Day Groceries is prepared daily—and sometimes twice a day. Basic ingredients for good boudain are pork and rice—plus seasoning.
“The seasoning,” explains Carrier, “has through the years varied with the tastes of individuals. There are many recipes” for boudain and Stanley’s special variety has a recipe that is kept locked in the company’s safe and is “written in Coonie French, too, so that it cannot be duplicated.”
“Boudain,” Carrier says, “is usually served hot as it is, but there are so many other ways to enjoy the wonderful dish of the Louisiana country. It may be fried for breakfast or can be deliciously prepared in left-over cold beans, used as a flavor or seasoning. Boudain is almost 80 per cent rice, the basic food of Southern Louisiana.”
For utmost pleasure, Stanley’s suggests that their fine boudain should be eaten with syrup, cracklins and baked sweet potatoes. Did Stanley’s say cracklins? Well, that’sanother story. Stanley’s will tell you about later.
3 April 1968, Port Arthur (TX) News, pg. 22, col. 2 ad:
FINEST IN TEXAS
29 May 1971, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Notes on Port Arthur’s Crwfish Festivities” by Frank X. Tolbert, sect. A, pg. 23:
I didn’t sample any of the delicacies such as boudain, a Cajun version of sausage. The ingredients include pork and rice and green onions and the ubiquitous base of “roux.”
4 February 1973, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “‘Dirty Rice’ Favored in Texas Cajun Town” by Frank X. Tolbert, sect. A, pg. 37:
The meaty pork stew is pungent with red pepper, black pepper and a little garlic, and it is combined with rice and the thinly sliced yellow onions, young green onions, bell peppers, parsley. And you have Dirty Rice.
In casings it becomes Boudain, the Cajun version of sausage.
30 May 1974, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Try the Cajun Way with Cabbage,” sect. E, pg. 12:
One of the sausages was boudin, a French term for the blood sausage or “pudding,” made with the blood of the pig. Boudin blanc is a white sausage made with pork but no blood. The Louisiana-style recipe that follows includes rice, giving the sausage a pale color.
2 tablespoons salad oil
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup chopped green pepper
1 cup chopped parsley
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 pounds ground pork
1/2 pound ground pork fat
1 cup cooked rice
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco pepper
2 teaspoons rubbed sage
In large skillet heat oil; add onions, green pepper, parsley, garlic and bay leaf. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender.
Turn into container of electric blender, cover and process until coarsely pureed, or put through a food mill. Turn into a bowl and mix with ground pork and pork fat.
Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Shape into balls about 1 inch in diameter. Place on a rack in a baking pan. Bake in 350 F. over 30 minutes. Makes 5 dozen sausage balls.
20 May 1976, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “It’s Crayfish Season in Texas’ Cajun Capital” by Frank X. Tolbert, sect. D, pg. 3:
And her recipes are stilled followed in the take-out food served at the market, such as boudain, a Cajun style sausage.
26 April 1977, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “A Visit in Kingdom of Marsh Raccoons” by Frank X. Tolbert, sect. D, pg. 3:
Boudain is a very spicy Cajun sausage. In the ring are pork and rice and red pepper and hot pepper. (In my French dictionary it is “boudin” and it means a number of things from a saddle bag to sausage. The Cajuns speak an 18th century French, though, and they spell it “boudain”.)
3 April 1987, The Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA):
Those food items include boudin balls, seafood poboys, shrimp and sausage—on a stick, mind you—seafood pasta, shrimp remoulade, jambalaya,
Google Groups; rec.food.cooking
From: (Christopher L. Davis)
Date: 3 Aug 1994 11:34:23 -0500
Local: Wed, Aug 3 1994 11:34 am
Subject: Re: Help: louisiana sausage, boudain
>I was in Texas last month and had a sausage compsoed of pork, rice, onion,
>peppers, and a magical blend of spices. I believe they called it a boudain.
>Does anyone have a recipe for this heaven on earth?
Well, it may have been Boudain in Texas, but in Louisiana it is Boudin pronounced Boo-Dan (ie. a short a). It is a Cajun rice dressing that is cooked in Sausage casings… I don’t know if I have a recipe handy, but I bet if you peeked into one of Justin Wilson’s cookbooks, or any Cajun cookbook, you could find a passable recipe… Check Paul Prudhomme’s cookbooks, too.
15 March 1995, Galveston County (TX) Daily News, pg. 17, cols. 1-2:
If you’re looking for an appetizer before your meal, try the delicious Louisiana-style boudin balls, crab balls or boiled catfish (when in season).
The boudin balls and crab balls are simply delicious. There are no fillers and stuffings to speak of, only boudin and crab meat covered in a very light, perfectly-seasoned batter.
Google Groups: alt.x.y
From: (richard danner)
Subject: Re: Pancakes or Waffles or French Toast...boudain balls
Boudain is a Cajun sausage made with meats, spices, rice and “other ingredients”. When served in casings it is sausage links. Sometimes it is rolled into a ball shape and cooked. Delicious with red beans and rice.
17 August 2000, Victoria (TX)
Dinner will begin with an appetizer sample plate which includes stuffed avocado, boudain balls, boiled shrimp and ceviche.
10 October 2001, Beaumont (TX) Enterprise:
First, we had a hard time finding a recipe for Boudain Balls. Now, the culprit is Cajun Pistolettes.
Google Groups: alt.music.rush
From: (Jim Geiger)
Date: 18 Oct 2001 19:47:09 GMT
Local: Thurs, Oct 18 2001 2:47 pm
Subject: Re: Authoritah’s Kitchen, Part Deux
Boudain is a cajun sausage thats ground and with rice and spices and stuffed into natural casings and may get additional flavor from a smokehouse.
The boudain balls (hu-hu-huh) that you had were deep fried and may have had cheese in them. I’ve seen boudain stuffed into jalapenos, which are then breaded and deep-fried.
Boudain is pretty good, probably an aquired taste for most people...but I like andouille sausage, better...epecially in gumbos, beans & rice, and etoufee.
Six Plates Over Texas
By Jason M. Marshburn
Published by iUniverse
Arancini Rice Balls
Sometimes we buy a stick of boudin and peel off the casing and cut into pieces and batter, roll into breadcrumbs, and fry for 3 minutes. We call these Boudain Balls. Boudain is dirty rice stuffed into casings. This is similar to arancini, but smaller and the meat mixed with the rice throughout.
24 March 2005, The Facts (Clute, TX), pg. 7A, cols. 3-4:
Or you may want to start your dinner with homemade Crab Cakes grilled and served with remoulade sauce, or Boudain Balls, that oh-so-Cajun concoction of seasoned pork and rice.
Southern Belly: Gilhooley’s, in San Leon, Texas
Posted by Ed Levine, May 25, 2008 at 3:00 PM
(They also dish fried boudain balls, employing the preferred Texas spelling for the rice and oddments sausage, known as boudin in Louisiana.)
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (3) Comments • Wednesday, September 24, 2008 • Permalink
ENJOYED THE READ, WAS LOOKING FOR SOME INFORMATION FOR A FRIEND IN NEW YORK. SHE CAME TO TEXAS (FIRST TIME) FOR MARDI GRAS AND LOVED THE BOUDAIN. I WANTED TO SHIP HER SOME-LOL, SHE CALLED IT “RICE SAUSAGE”. SO I WAS JUST SURFING TO FIND THE BEST LOCAL FLAVOR TO ORDER & SHIP TO HER. STILL SURFING.
WHAT IF THEY ARE IN LINKS AND NOT BALLS CAN I STILL FRY THEM?? OR SHOULD I POKE HOLES IN THEM OR WHAT??? THEY SOUND DELICIOUS.
It’s boudin until the French decide to spell differently. And since the CODOFIL, most everybody from Louisiana spells it right.
If you’re suffering cholesterol deficiency, insist on boudin balls. Try the gar balls, buffalo balls, and kingfish balls while you’re at it. If you’re in the right part of NOLA, you can compare them heads up with Arancini. None of these delicacies have anything to do with the genitalia of animals or politicians.
If you’re in the right part of Plaquemines or St. Bernard, ask around if somebody’s got boudin made of gator - it’s better than you might think. If you’re up north - say the Felicianas or Pointe Coupe, ask about boudin made with duck or rabbit - mighty tasty.
If you’re in Acadia or Iberia, tell ‘em you want to try panse boureé or chaudin. If you find the right kitchen, they’ll make it from cochón de lait and deep fry it. Then, the next time you get an invite to a Robert Burns Dinner, you’ll entertain snooty folks with tales of real food and bon temps (sheep, oats, and droning refrains, my ass!)
Should you happen to my kitchen and the season’s right, we’ll have very fresh boudin made with softshell turtle. I’ve never heard of anyone else doing it and I know why. It’s best within 12 hours and throw-away after 24. But it’s special and sooooo good.
I don’t know restaurants to tell you about, so what you need to do is go to festivals in the Parishes where folks serve what they make at home. Do some asking and listen close. You’ll get an answer and the lagniappe will likely be even better.
Bon chance, bon vie!