...now is the time to “peel um and eat um!”
Crawfish season here in the South runs from February through June. For tips on how to cook these Cajun crustaceans I asked Marc Dulaney of Memphis Mudbugs to share some tips. Marc and his partner Jeff Pettyjohn cook thousands of pounds of crawfish each year through their crawfish catering business that caters to private parties, businesses, and festivals.
First and foremost …
They’re called mudbugs for a reason.
These crustaceans make their homes in ditches and swamps, and they’re going to need a good rinse before being cooked. Marc washes them five or six times until the water is clear.
The flavor is in the water.
Memphis Mudbugs always uses liquid crab boil, onions, garlic, lemons, and their special dry seasoning in the water and they let this boil for a least an hour before cooking the crawfish.
Overcooking will make the crawfish rubbery and hard to peel. Usually 5 to 10 minutes - or until the water returns to boil - is plenty of time. Then they can be removed from the water and placed in a cooler to steam for at least 30 minutes or even hours.
And last but not least …
Lagniappe, a cajun word meaning "a little something extra," matters.
Not only do additional sweet and spicy sausages, fresh red potatoes, corn, and earthy mushrooms add nuance and flavor to the boil, they also stand alone as delicious treats and palate cleansers. Bugs aren't for everyone, and adding extras makes sure that no guest leaves hungry.
This is Jennifer Chandler with The Weekly Dish. Bon Appetit!
Memphis Mudbugs is a crawfish catering business that caters to private parties, businesses, and festivals. They will also wholesale Live Crawfish if orders are in advance. For more information on Memphis Mudbugs, visit www.memphismudbugs.com.