Friday, March 18, 2011

Crawfish to Go-Go

On Sunday night we had the master plan to get our own Crawfish boil goin on in Amy's house, minus the boil and plus a take-out seafood restaurant called Don's Seafood Hut in Metairie, LA.  We tried to grab the crawfish at Big Fisherman Seafood on Magazine St., but by 6pm on Sunday night they were out of the little mud-bugs, as I've heard them so affectionately called.  Big Fisherman did, however, have quite the selection of alligator and turtle meat sausages, which I was quite tempted to try.  (Not the turtle meat of course.   Little Turt, my pet turtle, will forever be in my heart.)

We called in to Don's Seafood Hut for 10 pounds of crawfish to go for Amy, her roommate Chelsea, and me to feast on.  They came pre-seasoned and boiled, and ready to eat.  After a quick peeling lesson we were off for about an hour of eating the little suckers, and they were delicious.  We were told to dip them in a mixture of ketchup and mayo to take away from a bit of the spicy-ness, and we washed them down with a beer called Abita Strawberry, which is a seasonal beer made right here in Mandeville, Louisiana.  I was worried this beer would remind me of sweet, European strawberry beers that I have had and that it would be weird to drink strawberry beer with seafood, however I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the subtle strawberry taste.  

Crawfish 101:  I know some people who don't like to eat crustaceans like lobster and crab because they are too much work to peel, but I think the peeling is half of the fun.  To peel a crawfish, first you gently squeeze the tail part of the shell and pull it loose from the rest of the little body.  Then crack the tail shell from the middle of the underside by placing your thumbs on the top middle of the shell and pulling the sides up.  (Is this confusing to read, because it's confusing to write.)  After the little tail shell is cracked you can loosen the tail meat and eat it.  I think after doing around 100 of them in about an hour, it becomes therapeutic.

I was so full after we finally got to the end of the two 5 pound bags.  I'm told that crawfish are eaten in all of the gulf-bordering states, but that they are the best tasting by far in Louisiana.  They are also very engulfed into the southern way of life, and are often dumped on huge tables of newspaper and shared at backyard parties all over the region.  From my experience and from what I heard from LA locals, it does not seem like fresh seafood is less available down there after the BP crisis but I'm sure the effects of that disaster are ever present in many ways.

Dons Seafood Hut: 4801 Veterans Memorial Boulevard, Metairie, LA  (504) 889-1550


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