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My First Taste Of Crawfish Étouffée
I was first introduced to this classic Cajun dish from Louisiana when I visited the Tabasco 1868 Restaurant on Avery Island, LA. The restaurant is named 1868 because that is the year that Tabasco was founded by Edmund McIlhenny.
After my first taste of this amazing dish I was IN LOVE. It really was to DIE for! I had never had crawfish before, and was intoxicated by this preparation which included an incredible buttery sauce seasoned with wonderful Cajun seasonings!
By the way, étouffée means “to smother” or “smothered” in French.
This Crawfish Étouffée Is Easy To Make!
I had previously thought that such a rich and elegant dish would be difficult to make from scratch. However, I’m excited to share with you here an easy and fairly quick preparation for this dish!
To make things easy, I use fully cooked and deveined crawfish tailmeat. I highly recommend this crawfish from Acadia Crawfish Co which I buy from my local grocer. Hopefully your grocer has fully cooked crawfish tailmeat, but if not, you can purchase from Acadia Crawfish Co’s online shop.
What Ingredients Will I Need To Make This Classic Cajun Dish?
In addition to crawfish, you will need the following ingredients to make this Crawfish Étouffée:
- Green bell pepper
- Chicken broth
- Bay leaf
- Tomato paste
- Green onions (as garnish)
- Cayenne pepper
- Your FAVE Tabasco sauce!
By the way, the onion, celery, and green bell pepper are known as “The Holy Trinity” in Cajun and Creole cooking. 🙂
The Method To Make This Easy and Delicious Crawfish Étouffée
Start By Making The Roux
The hardest part of making this dish is making the roux. And making the roux is not hard. 😀 Roux is a an equal parts combination of flour and fat (in this case butter) which is cooked together and used to thicken sauces.
Roux can be white, blond, or brown in color. The longer you cook the roux, the darker it gets. For this recipe, we will cook the roux for about 3 minutes and our goal is to get a white roux.
After melting the butter, you will add the flour tablespoon by tablespoon, whisking all the while. I put that in BOLD because continuous whisking is super important to achieve your desired results!
Time For The Holy Trinity!
Now that you have a gorgeous white roux, let’s bring on the Holy Trinity!
The next step is to add your diced Trinity (green bell pepper, onion, and celery) and bay leaf to the roux, and cook until these vegetables are softened. Then add some garlic and tomato paste, and stir to incorporate.
The Final Remaining Steps!
It’s now time to add some chicken broth (which you will bring to the boil), and then after lowering the heat we’ll finally add the cooked crawfish at the end until it’s warmed through. Finish with seasonings to include salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper (to your tastes), and a bit of extra butter. Extra butter always makes everything better!
Ca C’est Bon! Bon Appetit! (It Is Good! Enjoy Your Meal!)
Get ready to devour this creamy and delicious Crawfish Étouffée, served with some white rice and splashes of your favorite Tabasco! Green onions are the perfect garnish!
So easy! So delicious! Delight your family with this elegant meal soon! Bon Appetit! 😋
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Easy and Delicious Crawfish Étouffée!
- Cast iron skillet is preferred
- 6 tbsp butter split (use 4 tbsp for the roux, and 2 tbsp extra added at the end of cooking)
- 4 tbsp flour
- 12-16 oz crawfish tailmeat fully cooked
- 1 small onion diced
- 1 celery stalk diced
- 1 small green bell pepper diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 ts garlic minced
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1.5-2 cups chicken broth
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- cayenne pepper to taste
- green onions sliced/chopped as optional garnish
- Tabasco splash on your favorite Tabasco at the end!
- Place your skillet on your stove and turn it to med heat. Once hot, melt the butter. Then add the flour tablespoon by tablespoon, whisking the entire time. Continue to whisk for around 3 minutes, or until you get a nice white Roux.
- Now add the bay leaf, diced onion, celery, and green bell pepper. Stir and continue to cook until the vegetables are softened, around 6 minutes or so. It may take you a little less or more time, but cook until you see the onions are translucent and the vegetables are soft.
- Add the minced garlic and tomato paste. Stir to incorporate and continue to cook for around 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Now turn the heat up (med high to high) and add the chicken broth. Bring to the boil, and then turn the heat down and allow to simmer for a minute or so.
- Now add the cooked crawfish and remaining 2 tbsp of butter. Melt the butter, then add salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste.
- The dish is now ready to serve!!