Clear your schedule this Saturday for the return of the Houma Rotary Cast Iron Cook-off and Crawl.
The club’s third annual cook-off is scheduled for noon to 4 p.m. in Houma’s Courthouse Square.
More than 30 teams will compete, serving whatever dish they’d like, as long as it’s cooked in cast-iron cookware. Some anticipated dishes include End of the Trail Sauce Piquante, Cajun poboys, Bananas Foster, grillades and grits, chili, fish tacos and jambalaya.
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Local band Beep Beep & The Jeeps will perform live, and children can enjoy Frank and Tammy’s Magic Show.
Katie Portier, a Houma Rotary board member, said the cook-off is the community service group’s biggest fundraiser. It was canceled in 2021 because of the COVID pandemic, and Portier believes the return of events like the cook-off is important for the community to regain a sense of normalcy.
“A lot of folks are dealing with so much, a nice afternoon away enjoying beautiful weather, tasty food and live music can lift spirits,” she said.
A $5 admission grants visitors the opportunity to sample each of the dishes and vote for their favorite. Children 5 and younger are admitted free.
A new addition is the Cast-Iron Crawl, which takes place before the cook-off. For $10, participants will be given admission to the cook-off and a bingo card with fun activities to do at local restaurants, bars and downtown landmarks. Once four tasks are completed in a row, participants can bring their cards to the cook-off to be entered in a drawing for $150 in gift cards to spend downtown. The bingo card must be completed between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. to be entered for the drawing. Tickets for the crawl can only be purchased at the cook-off gate, beginning at 10 a.m., or online at castironcrawl.eventbrite.com.
“We felt a fun bingo that brought people around to the restaurants and bars would give them a little boost and also add another fun activity to the cook-off,” Portier said. “The best part about the crawl is that you get to visit some really great businesses downtown, enjoy a drink or two, then end up at the cook-off where you can enjoy live music and a taste of lots of delicious food.”
All proceeds benefit the Rotary Club of Houma’s community community service projects, such as leadership development programs at local elementary and high schools, projects to benefit local veterans and ongoing donations to the local food bank.