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Mardis Gras-style food coming to East Dundee

New Orleans-stye food like this King’s Cake from Piece-A-Cake Bakery will be served through Tuesday by various East Dundee establishments

New Orleans-stye food, like this King’s Cake from Piece-A-Cake Bakery, will be served through Tuesday by various East Dundee establishments celebrating Mardis Gras this year. | Erin Sauder for Sun-Times Media

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Updated: March 28, 2014 8:49AM

EAST DUNDEE — Longing for some jambalaya? Have a hankering for gumbo? The community can satisfy those cravings when the taste of New Orleans comes to East Dundee.

Several of the village’s eateries are coming together to host the first Mardi Gras celebration. From Thursday to Tuesday, each establishment will offer its own New Orleans-style fare to highlight the flavors of the popular festival.

During the celebration, Bandito Barney’s will serve up shrimp gumbo, chicken and andouille sausage gumbo, and Cajun shrimp and grits; Diamond Jim’s menu will include jambalaya, jumbo shrimp cocktail, Cajun shrimp, oysters and, on Fat Tuesday, lobster tail.

In the Neighborhood Meet Market is offering the Neighborhood Muffuletta sandwich, seafood po-boy sandwich, and Cajun shrimp gumbo. At Rosie O’Hare’s, patrons can order andouille sausage sandwiches and jambalaya soup. Benedict’s Eggs and More will serve a shrimp creole omelet, baked cheesy grits with shrimp and andouille, and a shrimp po-boy sandwich. A Mardi Gras special menu also will be available for Anvil Club members, with fare such as jambalaya and gumbo.

Shrimp po-boy and red beans and rice will be available at Van’s Frozen Custard.

“And on the custard-side, we’re giving away free beads for any kids that come in and order anything,” said Chad VanAcker, who owns the shop with his parents, Rick and Nancy VanAcker.

He’s excited about the celebration.

“I love the fact that East Dundee is starting to do all these different things to get the community together,” he said. “It’s something different, and it gets people to come downtown to these businesses.”

Nancy VanAcker said her son went to school at Tulane University in New Orleans.

“So he’s been to Mardi Gras,” she said. “He’s kind of our little link to the celebration.”

Diane Ahrens of East Dundee’s Piece-A-Cake Bakery said patrons can satisfy their sweet tooths with jam-filled doughnuts called paczki, King’s Cake, bread pudding and various cheesecakes.

Ahrens said the event will give the community a chance to try the different New Orleans-style food.

“There’s just so many possibilities,” she said. “And you don’t have to pay the airfare either.”

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