When we visited the Walt Disney World Food and Wine Festival last October, the non-vegetarians in the family devoured escargot from the French pavilion and crawfish etouffee from Louisiana. (I enjoyed some yummy veggies.) The good folks from the Louisiana tourism board handed out beads and more importantly, recipe cards. And thus, a new family favorite was born.
A word on the crawfish: I’m pretty sure they are vermin, but my husband and kids love them, so I’m cool with it. I buy lump crawfish meat (frozen) from Whole Foods. I hear you can get it cheaper elsewhere, but the cheaper varieties come from China. Caveat emptor.
This is our tweaked version of the recipe we were given at WDW.
1 ½ sticks unsalted butter
1 cup flour
1 large green pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can of diced tomatoes with green chilies
Kosher salt, to taste
about 1 t. of cayenne pepper
1 t. paprika (Hungarian is terrific.) (I probably put 2 teaspoons.)
11/2 cups of water (or a little more if needed)
1 lb. crawfish meat
4 cups cooked white rice
Melt butter and stir in flour to make a roux. Stir constantly over medium heat until roux browns to a lovely shade of copper. Add veggies and spices. Continue stirring. Add water a little at a time and stir until smooth. Reduce heat to low and stir often until thickened. Add crawfish. Simmer until crawfish is heated thoroughly but do not boil. Season to taste. Serve over rice.
Since the critters go in last, I do get to taste this for seasoning. It is a hearty dish and not low fat, obviously. The finished dish seems like it is harder to make than it actually is, so be sure to point out that you spent hours making it.