CONVENT — Does being a good jambalaya cook come naturally to those who live in Gonzales, home of the Jambalaya Festival?
Could be if results of Motiva Enterprises LLC Convent Refinery’s Jambalaya Jam Cook-Off benefiting United Way are any indication. Three of its four winners reside in the Ascension Parish town and the fourth lives nearby.
Jeff Bourque, of Gonzales, won first place Sept. 20, a win that earned him the right to represent Motiva at the Capital Area United Way’s Jambalaya Jam and campaign kickoff on Oct. 11. The team of Barrett Jenkins, of Gonzales, and Tim Becnel, of Vacherie, took second place; and Jesse Louque, Gonzales, placed third.
Larry J. Roussel, community relations representative for Motiva who coordinated the cooking competition, said all 19 competing teams had to cook 10 or 20 pounds of extra long-grain rice.
“Cooks opting to cook 20 pounds of rice used about 30 pounds of cubed Boston butt pork, 15 pounds of Veron smoked sausage and 15 pounds of diced onions,” Roussel said.
Ingredients were donated by Sysco Foods, Blue Runner Foods, Ralph’s Market and River Parish Foods.
White beans prepared by Motiva Refinery’s cooking team of Randy Tullier, Harry Cifero, Delmas Durocher and Jim Monahan were served with the jambalaya.
The jambalaya cooking teams were entered into two divisions, with the top three teams from each division advancing to the finals, Roussel said.
Judges were Lisa Yates, Cheryl LeBlanc Babin, Judge Jessie LeBlanc, Steven “Bugg” Lemoine, Shane Ortego, Abbey Flynn, Daniel Hawthorne, Randy Tullier, Tracey Smith, Jared Sears, Tony Pastor and Cheramie Sonnier.
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