CHEF JOHN FOLSE
CULINARY INSTITUTE

AT NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY

THIBODAUX – LOUISIANA

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CHEF JOHN FOLSE
CULINARY INSTITUTE

AT NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY

THIBODAUX – LOUISIANA

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Tis’ the Season to Eat Crawfish

In South Louisiana, we have more seasons than the average state. There are seasons of the weather and then the more important ones come along – the seasons of food. Springtime is known for the most delicious of them all – Crawfish Season! Because Catholicism has strong ties in the South, many Cajuns choose to leave meat out of their diet every Friday starting on Ash Wednesday until Easter Sunday. Although it may be difficult for others across the country, it gives Louisiana locals the best excuse to throw a crawfish boil and enjoy a Louisiana Friday night.

Crawfish add a great deal of importance to South Louisiana culture. Every local can tell you the best restaurant that sells crawfish or the family member or friend who hosts the best boil. Crawfish have played a prominent role in our culture since the very beginning. According to Crawfish.org, the food has been a favorite since the Native Americans and European settlers.

“Commercial sales of crawfish in Louisiana began in the late 1800s…In the 1960s crawfish farming made its debut with the cultivation of crawfish in man-made ponds, using controlled water levels, forage management and water recalculation techniques to produce a highly marketable product.”

Although crawfish bring enjoyment and excitement to the Louisiana culture, it also brings an abundance of jobs and effects the economy in a positive way. “Louisiana accounts for about 90 percent of all crawfish harvested in the United States,” states LSU Ag. The Louisiana Seafood Board also states that Louisiana has an annual economic impact of $120 million from the crawfish that are harvested each year.

Because South Louisiana is the crawfish hub of the United States, the locals know how to get creative with their boils and dishes. At a typical backyard boil, the “fixins” can include anything from sausage, corn, potatoes, garlic, mushrooms, and onions to any vegetable you can imagine. These tasty sides add flavor and variety to the boil.

Southern Louisiana is known for culturally diverse Cajun and Creole seafood dishes. Crawfish can be added to any meal to enhance the flavor that locals and visitors are known to love. Common dishes include crawfish gumbo, crawfish bread, crawfish casserole and crawfish etouffee.

Here at CJFCI, we take pride in our authentic Cajun and Creole dishes. Crawfish Etouffee is a South Louisiana staple that we believe we’ve perfected in our kitchens. Next time you have leftover crawfish from your weekend boil, get cookin’ with our tasty Crawfish Etouffee recipe!

Crawfish Etouffee
Ingredients (for 6 servings)
1/4 lb (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 cups chopped yellow onions
1 cup chopped green bell peppers
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 lbs peeled crawfish tails
1 Tbsp AP flour dissolved in 1/2 cup water
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne
2 Tbsp chopped green onions
1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
cooked long-grain rice
Preparation:
Heat the butter over medium heat in a large, heavy pot. Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery, and cook, stirring, until soft and lightly golden, about 15 minutes. Add the crawfish and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to throw off a little liquid, about 5 minutes. Add the flour/water mixture, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and cayenne. Remover from the heat. Add the green onions and parsley. Serve in warm bowls over steamed white rice.
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