New Orleans Cajun, Justin Wilson – Gumbo
New Orleans Cajun Justin Wilson tells us how to make Chicken and Andouille Gumbo.
Wilson was born in¬†Roseland¬†near¬†Amite, the seat of¬†Tangipahoa Parish, one of the “Florida Parishes” of southeastern Louisiana. He began his career as a¬†safety engineer¬†while he traveled throughout¬†Acadiana. The safety lectures that he made to refinery workers prompted him to become a Cajun storyteller. He remembered it this way on the back cover of¬†The Justin Wilson Cook Book:
- “Way back when I first started as a safety engineer, I took myself pretty seriously, and I found I was putting my audiences to sleep. So having lived all my life among the Cajuns of Louisiana, and having a good memory for the patois and the type of humor Cajuns go for, I started interspersing my talks on safety with Cajun humor.”
Wilson later recorded several comedy albums, beginning with¬†The Humorous World of Justin Wilson¬†on¬†Ember Records. He also recorded several albums for¬†Jewel Records¬†on the Paula label and a few for¬†Capitol Records. He later appeared as a guest on the popular¬†CBS¬†series¬†The Ed Sullivan Show. He was known for the¬†catchphrase, “I gar-on-tee!“.
As a comedian, Wilson was enormously popular in Louisiana, and to a lesser degree in neighboring states, but his humor may have been a little too specifically regional to enjoy the wider popularity of Southern comics such as¬†Jerry Clower¬†or¬†Archie Campbell.
He composed ten songs, as well as composing the background music for his cooking show and recorded one album of Christmas songs with a jazz band. Wilson wrote seven Cajun¬†cookbooks¬†and two books of Cajun stories. He hosted several¬†cooking shows¬†on¬†PBS¬†that combined¬†Cajun cooking¬†and humor. Most were aired from the studios of¬†WYES-TV¬†in¬†New Orleans.
Author Harnett T. Kane said of Wilson: “I know of no one [else] who portrays the Louisiana Cajun as well, so skillfully and entertainingly”.¬†A little-known fact about Justin was that his wife was the cook, not him.
Biography taken from:¬†http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justin_Wilson_(chef)