Louisiana Gumbo To Go In SF
by Jennifer Hudspeth
January 04, 2012 9:47 PM
It's considered to be a Southern delicacy, but the truth is... many South Dakotans don't even know what it is. A big bowl of gumbo can curb almost any appetite while taking the chill out of a cold winter's day, and for one Sioux Falls woman, homemade Louisiana gumbo is turning out to be a recipe for success. And that's why Gwendolyn Beaudion is someone you should know.
When you walk into the kitchen at Sonrise Baptist Church, you are sure to get a big dose of Southern hospitality, along with a hearty helping of gumbo.
“Most of my customers have been people who have heard of gumbo and are just curious enough to come and try it... and they loved it,” says Gwen Beaudion.
It's called the chicken soup of the South.
Gwen says, “I have it loaded with sausage and chicken cause that's what we do at home.”
Gwen's concoction is a mismatch of rice, vegetables, broth and meat. And of course what 6th generation recipe wouldn't be complete without a secret ingredient.
“And it's going to stay a secret,” laughs Gwen.
Gwen moved to Sioux Falls from Louisiana 7 years ago. After going on an empty search for grits and gumbo, she decided to start her own business: Louisiana Gumbo To Go.
Gwen says, “I would always fix it at home, prepare it at home, we say fix, but I'd prepare it at home and my children love it, they're best critics in the world.”
It was a family tragedy that prompted Gwen to move forward. After losing a son, Gwen's fear of failure turned into a drive to succeed.
“I just kept remembering what he said, he said momma you can do this, you can sell it. It's just that good. I just kept hearing those words and that's really what motivated me to do so,” says Gwen.
In October she began using the church kitchen free of charge as her own cafe....and her customers just keep coming back.
“When you eat this you'll realize there’s no reason to ever eat tuna hot-dish again, not when you can eat this,” says Jesse Moore, Pastor of Sonrise Baptist Church.
A charming personality, that's warming hearts and filling bellies… one bowl at a time.
“Just make yourself at home, just sit down and eat and chat, and enjoy, bon appetite!” says Gwen.
Gwen serves gumbo at Sonrise Baptist every weekday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Her goal is to eventually have her own building. She is also looking into packaging the gumbo so it can be shipped throughout the Midwest.