Travel & Food

Red Beans and Andouille Sausage. © Carol Labuzzetta, 2021

Inspired to cook a Creole dish

I’m always on the look out for a new recipe to try. Last week I came across a recipe for Andouille Sausage and Red Beans. This is a dish that I’ve had at a restaurant here that serves cajun and creole dishes. Both types of fair are a welcome change from standard mid-western beef and cheese dishes, although we Wisconsinites do eat our share of fresh fish. Both Cajun and Creole dishes hail from Louisiana and the people there that historically settled there and brought French influence to these cooking styles. Simply put one relies on local ingredients and can be stretched far to feed more, and the other relies on rarely found ingredients that feed few. An article on The Spruce Eats website informs with more depth, if interested. Another source,, said that if one is in Louisiana, Creole means fancy food and Cajun means rustic. It sounds like a case of the city mouse verses the country mouse to me!

However, what I originally read last week that caught my attention was that creole style cooking uses tomatoes and cajun style does not. Now, that seems a pretty simple way to understand the difference!

The impetus to find this new recipe was that I bought some Usinger brand Andouille sausage at our local supermarket. I remembered having the dish at Buzzard Billy’s, the aforementioned restaurant in downtown La Crosse. I figured it would be easy to make and it was! The recipe called for ingredients – like rice, garlic, and chicken stock – that we usually have on hand. I found it on

My husband thoroughly enjoyed it and is already asking for me to make it again! The recipe is a keeper! It has just the right amount of heat, most from the sausage itself. The only thing I would change is that we ate Naan flat bread with it, as you can see from the photo of my plate. I would definitely have cornbread with it next time.