LaPlace cook takes on Bridge City gumbo chefs, beats out 30 others to take championship

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 6, 2007


Staff Reporter

LAPLACE – Just about every year since 1988, LaPlace native Keith Brock Sr. has entered the cooking contest held during the annual Andouille Festival. This year, however, he decided to kick it up a notch.

Satisfying a need for a greater challenge, the seven-time gumbo cooking champion decided to take his show on the road by entering his chicken and andouille delicacy in the 37th annual Gumbo Festival in Bridge City, LA, held October 14 by the Holy Guardian Angels Catholic Church.

“If LaPlace is the andouille capital of the world,” said Brock. “Then Bridge City is certainly the gumbo capital of the world.”

Brock said he and about 30 other participants submitted entries that were judged by about 40 different New Orleans chefs and restaurant owners.

“We were judged by some real professional people,” said Brock. “These were folks who really know what they are looking for in good gumbo.”

After meticulously reviewing each submission in two categories, Brock, who was entering the contest for the first time, was awarded first place in the chicken category, as well as best in show among all participants.

“It just goes to show that our andouille stands for itself,” said Brock who was sponsored locally by Jacob’s World Famous Andouille and Matherne’s Supermarket. “We took our specialties, local entities, out to their contest and found success.”

Brock said he intends to continue entering Bridge City’s festival cook-off, and is always looking for similar events to show off his gumbo prowess.

“The stiffer the competition, the better,” said Brock. “I want everyone to know where the best gumbo in the world comes from.”