Crawfish season is here and the mudbugs are starting to get nice and big.
You can smell the neighborhood Crawfish boils all over town and hear the propane tanks powering up for the most popular season in New Orleans….Crawfish Season.
What is a Crawfish?
Crawfish are freshwater crustaceans resembling small lobsters. These little mudbugs are called all sorts of names from crayfish to yabbies to small lobsters. But, in Louisiana they will always be Crawfish. So, what do they look like? If you compare a Maine lobster to a crawfish, the only major difference most people would notice is the size. Crawfish look like baby lobsters and are about 2 to 6 inches in length compared to a lobster’s 20 or more inches.
So, how do you cook them?
Everyone has their own special way to boil, but they all begin with a huge pot, propane tank, some sides, and lots of crawfish. All crawfish chefs will tell you to begin with rinsing your crawfish off with plain water before cooking them until the draining water is clear. Next, some people go straight for the pre-made seasonings and others mix their own for their boiling seasoning. Then, most people add garlic, potatoes, celery, lemons, onions, and corn, and others even include mushrooms, carrots, brussels sprouts, hot dogs, and deer sausage. Everyone boils their crawfish at different cooking levels and for different times with different soaking times. It is up to you and your boiling Krewe to determine the best way.
Now, that the cooking is finished and the crawfish and sides are spread out on the table, it is time to eat. But, the most important question still remains…To Eat or Not To Eat a Straight Tail Crawfish? The short answer is yes. The myth states that cooked crawfish with straight tails were dead before cooking and it is best to avoid consuming them. But, according to research by the LSU College of Agriculture, “dead crawfish, even after five days in a cooler, exhibited about the same degree of curl as live crawfish when cooked.” (If you want to read more about the research surrounding straight tail crawfish consumption, click here to read the LSU College of Agriculture’s research).
Now that you know the answer, does it change your opinion of straight tailed crawfish?