There is a Rascal’s Restaurant behind the Shop Rite, but the most important things to get from Rascal’s Kitchen, its boudin and cracklin’s, are served at the gas station off I-10. The Rascal’s Express counter is at the center of the mini-mart. Most of the food is typical gas station fare, like heat lamp-warmed corn dogs and microwave pizza with ketchup sauce. It isn’t much like the great Cajun butcher shops that make the great boudin of the area, nor is it the best place to experience boudin per se. But the fact is that Rascal’s boudin is excellent. Stopping for some is a novel opportunity to grab one of America’s great regional delicacies from a gas station with the ease of picking up a bag of chips.
The fresh and frozen meat products Rascal’s produces are set up along a wall of refrigerators near the energy drinks. These products are meant to be taken home (boudin is excellent when grilled). But if you want a road snack, head over to the center kiosk and pick up a hot foil wrapped link. Priced by weight, they are around couple of bucks each, and they make for easy hand-held porky nourishment in the car.
Rascals’ boudin is the closest to a French boudin blanc that we’ve had. It’s more herbaceous than Cajun-spicy, but there is a kiss of cayenne in the finish that makes it taste proper. It’s on the ricier side, which might turn some off, but we dig it. Usually boudin is eaten by itself or with saltine crackers, but we could imagine this stuff with a crusty baguette.
The boudin balls are far less compelling than the links, which is typical of the many boudin gas stations. They have a nice crunch, and do contain Rascal’s excellent sausage, but they lack the succulence of the real deal.
Cacklin’ are jaw-breaking good. Grab a bag and a few links, and gas up while you’re here.