Local business inspired by family’s journey for Louisiana flavor
For Southern Bayou Foods President Kerry Kennedy, he and his family’s quest for a delicious, no-salt Louisiana seasoning began after his father had a serious heart attack.
“It was kind of a big wake-up call for me, for him, for our entire family, really, that we needed to start being a little more conscience about our diets and what we eat,” Kennedy said.
After his heart attack, Kennedy said his dad Steve Kennedy tried nearly 20 different salt-free seasonings, anything he could find to stick to doctor’s orders. Though finding a seasoning that catered to his Louisiana palette was a challenge.
“Growing up in South Louisiana, you’re used to a certain type of palette, a certain type of flavor of foods, and going on a heart-healthy diet can limit that quite a bit,” Kennedy said.
Eventually they tried a seasoning that family friend Jason Daigle created, which Kennedy said satisfied the Cajun palette without overloading the food. After spending a year just making the spice blend for friends and family, Kennedy formally launched Southern Bayou Foods and began selling the Basin Blend in stores Aug. 2015.
The Basin Blend gives an authentic, robust Louisiana flavor that isn’t too spicy, Kennedy said. They use rough-cut grains, which give more flavor when you cook with it. Instead of spreading it over food before eating, the seasoning is best used when cooked with it, which helps evenly distribute the flavor, Kennedy said.
“It really is a good feeling to be able to create a product so many people like and so many people are asking about,” Kennedy said. “I’m thrilled.”
The company also has a Cajun Blend that adds cayenne and red pepper flakes to the mix, which will be fully released to retailers by the end of August, and a third seasoning that will be released in September.
Basin Blend and Cajun Blend can be found in several locations throughout Acadiana. For a full listing, check out basinblend.com.