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The Perfect Crawfish Boil

crawfish boil etiquette

To create the perfect crawfish boil you’ll need live crawfish, some vegetables, a pot, burner, propane, a good amount of Fruge’s seasoning, and some good people to share the experience with.

  1. When getting your crawfish, you’ll want to get farm-raised live crawfish and be sure to have enough for everyone (usually about 3-5 pounds per person).
  2. Next you need to think about your sides. The standard is just some potatoes and corn on the cob but you can also have mushrooms, onions, garlic, lemons, artichokes, and some even put cut up hot dogs or sausage in the pot too. The sides may seem simple but they play a large part in the experience and can make or break a boil.
  3. Your equipment should be a large pot, depending on the amount you are planning to boil. A 60 or 80 qt. can boil up to a sack (30 lbs.) at a time. If you are just cooking 10/20 lbs, a 20 quart is fine. You will also need a burner to put the pot on (unless you are doing it on the stove), and some propane so you can actually have a boil.
  4. To ensure that your crawfish taste great you’ll need the right type of seasoning. You have multiple types of seasoning to boil with and it all comes down to what you prefer. Fruge seasoning is a wonderful choice. We took years to come up with the perfect blend. It’s perfect for a layered effect. The more you put on, the spicier it gets, so you can choose how much is perfect for you. Dry seasoning is very useful because you can not only season the water with it but can add seasoning to the crawfish after they are out of the water.
  5. Now, one of the most important parts of the crawfish boil are the people you share it with. With the right group, the boil should be just as fun as when you are eating the crawfish so choose some close friends that you can knock back a beer with a make it a party because nothing says a good time like a crawfish boil.

Now that you know what you will need, lets talk about how to make your food taste the best.

  1. Start by filling the pot a little more than half way and begin heating up the water to cook your sides. For the best results, you can add a little bit of seasoning (about half a pound) but that is your choice and they will still turn out great without it. After you have finished the sides be sure to put them in an ice chest to stay hot while you cook the crawfish.
  2. Before dropping in the crawfish, you’ll want to add some more seasoning (anywhere from 1-3 extra pounds) to the water and then bring the water to a boil. Usually we suggest 1 lb. of seasoning per 10 lbs. of crawfish. Once that water is bubbling, you can add the crawfish.
  3. When cooking the crawdads, you only want to boil about one sack at a time. They should take about 5 minutes and you can take them out when you can see the crawfish floating in the water (pro tip: before removing the crawfish, use a hose and spray water in the pot by dunking the end of the hose in and out of the pot. This will make the crawfish soak up water and be more juicy to eat).
  4. When the crawfish are done, take them out and pour into a large ice chest while someone sprinkles more dry seasoning on them (.5-2 pounds of seasoning) and then close the lid and shake them up a little. Repeat these steps until you are out of crawfish to cook.

Now its time to eat, you can choose to eat with trays or just dump them on the table. Grab from the pile but be sure to have some paper towels nearby because they can be pretty messy. Be sure before you begin to grab a cold beer because you have just pulled off the perfect crawfish boil and you deserve a drink.

Crawfish Myths: Use Salt to Purge Your Crawfish

crawfish myths

Crawfish boils are more than tradition in Southern Louisiana; they’re a way of life.

More than a simple get-together, crawfish boils bring family and friends together to eat, smile and reminisce. Every year, Cajuns and regular people throughout the Pelican State wait (somewhat patiently) for the first crawfish drive thrus to pop up throughout their community. Not long after, the smell of boiling crawfish wafts through the air.

As with any tradition, crawfish and crawfish boils come with their fair share of myths. One of the most commonly held of these is that the best way to clean crawfish is by rinsing them in salt water – or even simply placing them in a tub of salt water. This is an old wives tale, and not something we recommend.

Crawfish excrete waste through their gills, and purging takes time. While a salt rinse may clean the existing waste from their gills, it will not force the crawfish to purge themselves and eliminate waste from their intestines.

If you truly want to purge crawfish, they need to be flushed for several hours with extremely-fresh, oxygenated water. We began doing this to keep our inventory healthy, but learned that crawfish actually purge themselves while fasting in the fresh, clear water. While labor-intensive, we feel it is the best way to ensure our crawfish are purged and ready to eat.

While we keep our crawfish in this hyper-environment right up until they are shipped, we still recommend rinsing them off with a cool hose once you receive them to not only refresh them, but give them a final shower. Usually the crawfish finish the perge on the trip to you.

You can go ahead and save your salt!

 

Crawfish Myths: Can You Eat Straight-Tail Crawfish?

crawfish myths

If you live in Southern Louisiana, chances are you have been to a crawfish boil.

Crawfish boils are a tradition that are passed down through families with each having their own unique customs, recipes, and etiquette. Some things are constant throughout nearly all boils, however, including what is considered the gospel truth among Louisianans: Never eat the straight-tail crawfish.

One of the first things you learn at a crawfish boil is do not eat the straight-tail crawfish. Supposedly, straight tail crawfish were dead before the boil and are therefore not safe to eat. This bit of advice has been passed down from generation to generation, and it’s one of the most popular myths about crawfish.

Why do crawfish curl when cooked? The abdomen of crustaceans, such as crawfish, usually curls as a result of muscle contraction when cooked. Therefore, the assumption is if their abdomens are decaying or decomposed in any way, it could prevent the muscle from contracting. However, research done by the LSU AgCenter has shown there is no difference in tail curl between crawfish that were alive when boiled and ones who were already dead. The researchers determined the straight tail was most likely a result of putting too many crawfish in the pot at once.

There’s a better way to test if the crawfish is truly edible. If the meat is mushy or crumbles, don’t eat it. Otherwise it should be fine to eat, regardless of the tail curl.

Crawfish Questions: How much crawfish per person?

If you want to have a party or get together for your family and friends, a crawfish boil is a great way to make sure the party is a success. The smell of a crawfish boil will entice your guests to eat (and may even get you a few stragglers from the neighborhood), so it is important to order enough crawfish to feed everyone.

crawfish boil

One of the most common questions we hear at Cajun Crawfish is “how many pounds of crawfish should I order”?

A good guideline for any crawfish boil is 3 pounds per person. However, it is important to take your guests into consideration when you place your order. For example, if your guests are big eaters, you may want to order 5 pounds for those individuals.

Now, if you’re down our way a Cajun will eat 7-10 pounds, so you may need to take out a small loan if you’re having a big boil! The most important thing to remember is it’s all about having fun and eating great food, and combining your live crawfish with a good gumbo and some delicious Cajun treats will make any crawfish boil a success!

Keep in mind, if you order too much, they are delicious cold the next day (stored in your frig or just in ice chest with ice on them). Or our favorite, is to peel the leftovers and make crawfish potato soup with the leftover potatoes, corn and crawfish… it’s so easy and delicious )

Have any questions about crawfish or our company? Let us know in the comments below or share your favorite crawfish boil memory.

Crawfish Questions: Can Pregnant Women Eat Crawfish?

pregnant woman with crawfish

It’s crawfish season again and people across the country – and especially in Louisiana – are gearing up to enjoy delicious, live crawfish at their next boil. Every year, we get a lot of questions about crawfish, cooking instructions, and how much crawfish are in a serving.

One question we get often – and one that is very important – is whether women can eat crawfish while they are pregnant.

This is a great question, and due to high levels of mercury in some types of fish, it is an important thing to consider, especially since the FDA recommends that pregnant women limit the amount of seafood they eat.

Fortunately for crawfish lovers, crawfish is in the class of seafood that is considered to have the lowest levels of mercury by the American Pregnancy Association, as long as it is fully cooked.

If you limit your crawfish to no more than 12 ounces per week, you can enjoy these delicious crustaceans without worry, especially the farm-raised varieties, like our live crawfish.

 

Have any questions about crawfish you would like answered? Leave us a comment below!

And if you would like to order delicious live crawfish for your next boil, check out our great selection, which we will deliver right to your door!

Crawfish Pie with Cornmeal Crust

delicious crawfis hpie

Crawfish Pie Filling

  • 8 Tbs (1 stick) butter
  • 1 cup EACH finely chopped white onions, green bell peppers, celery
  • 1 T Creole seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1 cup fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 Tbs cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup fish or vegetable stock, warm
  • 1lb crawfish tails
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 2Tbs chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 9-inch prepared pie crust (recipe follows)

Cornmeal pie crust

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white or yellow cornmeal (not stone-ground)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped sage
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons ice water

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Crawfish Tails for PiePulse together flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt and sage in a food processor. Add butter and rosemary and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some small (roughly pea-size) butter lumps. Drizzle in 4 tablespoons ice water and pulse until just incorporated.

If the dough doesn’t hold together, add more water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition and test again.

Roll out the dough into one disk between two sheets of parchment paper to 12-inch round. Peel off top sheet of paper; invert dough into 9-inch-diameter pie dish. Peel off second sheet of paper. Gently press dough into pie dish, pressing any cracks together as needed to seal and leaving dough overhang.

Roll a rolling pin over the top of pan to trim the overhanging dough. Chill crust for 10 minutes.

Transfer pie crust to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove crust from the oven and let cool until crawfish mixture is prepared.

 

Crawfish pie

Melt butter in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions, bell peppers, celery and cook until soft, 8-10 minutes. Add seasoning, cayenne, tomatoes. Dissolve the cornstarch and the stock in a small bowl and add it to the pan. Stir and cook the mixture for 10 minutes. Stir in crawfish, green onions and parsley. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour the crawfish mixture into the prepared pie crust and bake for 40 minutes or until pie crust edges are golden brown. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 

Food Blogger Nikki Miller-KaNikki Miller-Ka is a food blogger, freelance writer and professional cook based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

She writes about her life as a foodie, culinary professional, and everything seasonal & regional for her blog, Nik Snacks. Bite it and write it. That’s what she does. Formerly, she’s worked as a researcher, an editorial assistant, reporter and guest blogger for various publications in the Southeast. She has worked as a catering chef, a pastry chef, a butcher, a baker, and a biscuit-maker. She travels with her grandmother’s cast-iron skillet, ready to cook at a moment’s notice.

Celebrate Father’s Day with a Crawfish Boil!

photo via http://www.flickr.com/photos/xhero

When it comes to celebrating our fathers, there are many ways it can be done; but if you live in a region where crawfish are plentiful, a fun option for everyone is with a Father’s Day crawfish Boil. And if you don’t have access to crawfish where you live we’d be happy to ship some to you!

“A Louisiana Crawfish Boil on Father’s Day?” you might ask. Sure, why not! After all, boiling crawfish is not something that only dads can prepare. True…in most scenarios it is Dad who manages the grill, but it doesn’t have to be. Consider this, to have a rockin’ crawfish boil one only needs a “few key elements.” These are a large pot, a heat source, some crawfish boil seasonings, live crawfish and an assortment of veggies and meats. As you set up for this celebration of Dad, be sure to have dad resting in a comfortable location –complete with the cold beverage of his choosing, some reading material and whatever else you have available to help dad stay relaxed.
When you call the family to the table. Be sure dad is first in line!Real Men Boil Crawfish!
Of course, if you have always depended on Dad to handle the LA crawfish boil, then you may need some basic instructions —and not the ones that begin with, “Dad, can you do fill in the blank.” Click here for some simple directions for making dad a fantastic Cajun crawfish Father’s Day feast.

Hmmm… Celebrating Father’s Day with a crawfish boil sounds like a party that should happen often! If you need help celebrating Father’s Day (or any other event) with a Louisiana crawfish boil, give Cajun Crawfish a call. We would love to be a part of your celebration

Cold Crawfish Dip

Cold Crawfish Dip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“This is a ‘make a day before’ recipe that is out of this world! Very rich and great for parties or get togethers as it makes a lot. Serve on crackers.” — KSHARP01

Recipe from allrecipes.com

Ingredients
1/2 cup butter
2 pounds crawfish tails, with fat
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (e.g. Tabasco™), or to taste
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, or to taste

Directions
1.    Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add half of the green onions, and cook until wilted. Add the crawfish tails, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
2.    In a large bowl, stir together the cream cheese and mayonnaise until well blended. I like to use an electric mixer. Season with hot pepper sauce and Worcestershire sauce until the mixture is pink in color. When the crawfish have cooled slightly, stir them and the butter into the dip along with the rest of the green onion. Mix well, cover and refrigerate overnight to properly blend the flavors.

6 Tips for the Perfect Memorial Day Crawfish Boil

Memorial Day Crawfish Boil Pot and Paddle

Planning Your Memorial Day Crawfish Boil
Memorial Day is just around the corner and the warm weather party season is officially in high gear. So to get things started off on the right note, why not throw a Memorial Day crawfish boil? After all, a crawfish boil is as American as hot dogs and burgers, only a lot more fun to eat!

Of course, if you have never hosted a crawfish boil then this may sound a bit intimidating. But what exactly is necessary to have a successful Memorial Day crawfish boil? So, glad you asked! Here are some tips for throwing the perfect crawfish boil – no matter where you live.

Memorial Day party, Crawfish and Beer
6 Tips for the Perfect Memorial Day Crawfish Boil
1. Order at least 3 pounds of live crawfish per person who will attend. (Rule of thumb for purchasing food for a Louisiana crawfish boil– 60 pounds of crawfish will feed 15 – 30 guests; 90 pounds should feed 25 -30 guests.)

2. A few days before your Memorial Day crawfish boil, check to see that you have paper products – don’t forget newspaper to line the serving table with, propane for the grill, a large pot (think big – perhaps grandma’s big stew pot!) and an equally large paddle with which to stir the pot. You will also want to order, or reserve the crawfish, so that on Memorial Day, you can just go pick up your crawfish. To keep it truly patriotic, you can even ask for some of the blue and white crawfish, too!

3. On the day before you do your shopping. Be sure to also pick up corn on the cob, potatoes and onions to toss in the boil along with your crawfish seasonings, plenty of beer and lots of ice! You may also want to include watermelon, as a dessert, as the sweetness of the melon is great foil to the spices and heat of the Louisiana crawfish boil seasoning.

4. When your guests begin to arrive for your Memorial Day crawfish boil, you will want to be ready to start cooking. Place that large pot on your bruner, fill it with your seasonings, and of course, a healthy amount of beer and add the potatoes first –these will take the longest time to cook! Now, when it comes to the perfect recipe for the proper Louisiana crawfish boil, there is a wealth of opinions, so be sure to check out our How To Boil Crawfish page to determine what appeals to you.

5. When the cooking is complete, drain the basket and pour down the center of a newspaper lined table or, you can put the food in several Styrofoam containers lined with foil. Then give out a holler, and let everyone know the Memorial Day crawfish boil is ready to devour.

6. Every good party needs some entertainment, so consider having live music or a DJ, plenty of games and places for mingling and dancing.
And there you have it – the steps to planning a perfect Memorial Day crawfish boil. So, whatcha waiting for? Get those invitations out and get ready to have a great Memorial Day crawfish boil!

You can order your live crawfish from us right now!

G is for Gumbo – The ABC’s of Cajun Cooking

G is for Gumbo - The ABC's of Cajun Cooking

Gumbo is a dish that originated in Southern Louisiana during the 18th century. Cajun Gumbo typically begins with a roux of flour and some type of fat (butter, oil, lard). The color and underlying falvor of gumbo come from this roux, which is loving stired continuously until it turns a rich caramel color. Next comes the Cajun Holy Trinity (bell peppers, celery and onions) and often includes okra. A Meat or shellfish stock is added and some type of shellfish is often added (crawfish, shrimp, crab), and many Gumbo’s include Andouille sausage an chicken. Filé powder (ground sassafras ), is another key ingredient. The dish combines ingredients and culinary practices of several cultures, including West African, Creole, French, Spanish, German, and Choctaw.