How a Creole sausage changed Houston barbecue
“He was right,” says King today, “So I turned in my resignation that day and started working for the family business.” King Creuzot now oversees the Frenchy’s businesses in Houston.
The Creuzots got to work expanding the sausage-making business. They’d occasionally have leftover “link meat,” or meat trimmings used to make sausage. They sold that to the bustling barbecue joints in Third Ward. Visiting places like Lott’s, Murphy’s and Green’s, the Creuzots noticed a specific type of sausage made by the African American pitmasters of the neighborhood known as “homemade links” or “juicy links” that originated in Beaumont.
Over the years, the term “homemade link” became a generic name for this type of sausage, even though it technically wasn’t made on-site at many restaurants.
The Creuzots started making a version of that sausage they called Old Fashioned Barbecue Links and marketed it to smaller barbecue joints around Houston.
Burns Original BBQ “Homemade Links”
One of those places was Burns BBQ, opened by Roy Burns Sr. in Acres Homes in 1973. In addition to the Old Fashioned link, the Creuzots took some chaurice sausage with them on a sales call to Burns. When Roy Burns tasted them side-by-side, he decided to serve the spicier chaurice sausage, though he kept the more familiar and traditional “homemade link” moniker.
With Burns leading the way, the chaurice sausage became a standard item on many barbecue menus starting in the 1970s and ’80s, bringing an unmistakable Creole flavor to Houston barbecue.
Burns Original BBQ is the biggest restaurant purveyor of the Frenchy’s chaurice sausage (still called “homemade links” on the menu), selling over 1,200 pounds of the spicy Louisiana creation on a typical Memorial Day weekend.