Crawfish etouffee is a simple cuisine native to Louisiana. The dish is crawfish cooked in a buttered and flavored gravy, together with herbs, spices, and seasonings. The combination of herbs, spices, and shellfish gives it a sweet and rich flavor that makes for quite a delicacy.
Etouffee is a french word that means to smother, which is how crawfish etouffee is cooked. The dish wouldn’t be complete without the typical Cajun seasonings, onions, celery, and bell pepper.
Crawfish etouffee is relatively easy to make and doesn’t take much time to fix, making it all the easier to learn how to cook, and that’s what I’m going to show you in this recipe.
Crawfish Etouffee Recipe
- 1 lb Crawfish (Cooked)
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 2 tbsp Flour
- 2 counts Green Onions Scallion
- 2 tbsp Chopped Parsley
- 2 cups Crawfish/Chicken Stock
- 2 tbsp Kosher Salt
- 2 tbsp Bell Pepper (Green or Red)
- 2 tbsp Black Pepper
- 2 tbsp Minced Garlic
- ½ cup Celery (Chopped)
- 1 tbsp Cajun Seasoning
- 1 pc Bay Leaf
Preparing the Etouffee
- The first thing to do is to prepare the gravy or roux, which will form a base for the dish.
How to Prepare the Roux
- Put your butter in a skillet to melt over medium heat and stir it well.
- When the butter is completely dissolved, add your flour and stir continuously to avoid burning.
- After about five minutes, when the mixture has turned a caramel color, your roux is ready for other ingredients.
How to Prepare the Crawfish Etouffee
- Add your chopped celery, onions, and bell peppers to the roux, stir and allow to cook for about 5 to 7 minutes. It would be best if you left a few green onions for garnish.
- Add your minced garlic, Cajun seasoning, kosher salt, black pepper, and bay leaves, and allow to simmer for a few minutes.
- Pour in your stock and allow it to come to a boil after some minutes.
- When it has simmered, add your crawfish or chicken stock and allow to simmer for about 5 minutes. That is just enough time to allow it to cook and absorb the taste and flavor of the broth.
- Add your green onions for garnish and your chopped parsley just before you turn your heat down. Your Crawfish Etouffee is ready!
What Is Crawfish Etouffee Eaten With?
Crawfish Etouffee is typically eaten with cooked white rice. Other things you can eat it with are:
- Homemade garlic bread
- Homemade white bread
Can I use any other type of shellfish or protein for this recipe?
Yes. Other types of shellfish etouffee can also be used. You can use fish, mussels, shrimp, lobsters, and crab instead of crawfish.
Why do some people add tomatoes when cooking crawfish etouffee?
While adding tomatoes gives the dish a unique taste, this is the creole way of making the dish and not the typical Cajun recipe. The addition of tomatoes is optional.
What’s the difference between crawfish and crayfish?
There’s no difference between the two asides from the different ways of calling it. The names are peculiar to other regions.
How to Make Homemade Crawfish Stock
Asides from this etouffee, you can choose to boil your crawfish. During a crawfish boil, the heads of the Crawfish are usually thrown out. This head can be an essential ingredient for making stock if you prefer homemade crawfish stock. Below is the simple way of making this.
Ingredients needed for the stock are crawfish head, celery, onions, bay leaf, garlic, and 4 cups of water.
- Rinse the crawfish to allow the natural flavor to enter the stock.
- Put in a pot and add water.
- Add the remaining ingredients and allow them to come to a boil over medium to high heat.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 25 minutes.
- Turn your heat off and pour the mixture into a fine sieve to drain your stock.
Your crawfish stock is ready to use. Salt isn’t used while preparing the stock because the Crawfish boil contains salt, and you can add salt to the main dish you will use the stock in.
If you want to preserve the stock for later use, put it in the freezer, which can last for months.
How Can I Boil Crawfish?
This method is also another way of eating your crawfish instead of making the etouffee.
- Add water to a pot and allow it to boil. The water should be able to cover the Crawfish you’re going to add soon wholly.
- When it boils, add your crawfish and allow it to simmer again for only 3 minutes. Live crawfish are usually used but if it’s frozen, allow it to boil for only a minute.
- Remove and place them in a dry cooler/ice chest. Add your seasonings, such as Cajun seasoning, lemon and pepper seasoning, garlic, and corn, and allow it to remain for about 13 to 15 minutes to absorb the flavor. Your boiled crawfish is ready to be eaten!.
Extra Tips to Note
Some essential things to look out for when making this recipe or even boiling your crawfish.
- If you’re buying fresh crawfish, you should ensure they are alive before using them.
- It would be best if you cooked your crawfish live. When boiling crawfish, the dead ones will float, and you must remove them.
- To identify dead crawfish, look for the ones with a straight tail. Dead crawfish are dangerous to eat because they contain many certain bacteria that aren’t eradicated by cooking.
Nutritional Benefits of Crawfish
- The crawfish tail is very rich in proteins.
- Crawfish provides for a rich, low-calorie seafood diet.
- It contains minor amounts of Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin A, which are very healthy for various bodily functions.
- Crawfish are an excellent source of folates, vitamins, and minerals like selenium, iron, and iodine.
How to Store Crawfish Etouffee
If you want to keep it for later use, crawfish etouffee can either be refrigerated or frozen, depending on how long you want to store it.
If it’s refrigerated, it can last for up to 3 days. If frozen, it can last for up to a month before use.
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