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Food & Drink Blog

Monday Meal: Cajun-Creole Crawfish Pasta

by Ted Scheffler
- Posted // 2013-07-15 -

My best buddy from college lives in the French Quarter of New Orleans, and years ago he suggested we eat at K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen, chef Paul Prudhomme's original restaurant. I'd always thought the place was a bit of a tourist trap, and resisted. But Jamie, my buddy who knows food, insisted. Well, I'm sure glad he did, because our meal at K-Paul's was one of the most memorable I've ever had. 

In particular, I recall a rich, decadent pasta dish -- sort of like fettuccine Alfredo, but made with crawfish. It was otherworldly.

So, here is my approximation of that dish, as best as I can remember it. My recipe calls for crawfish tails. If you can't find them, you could substitute shrimp and/or crab meat.

Ingredients:

3/4 pound dried pasta, such as fettuccine or pappardelle. I like a hearty, thick pasta for this thick, hearty sauce.

6 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. Chef Paul Prudhomme's Seafood Magic or Blackened Redfish Magic

3 scallions, finely chopped

a handful of chive sprigs, minced 

2 cups heavy cream

12 oz. cooked, peeled and deveined crawfish tails

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Method:

First, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

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Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. When the better has melted, add the Seafood Magic, chives and the chopped scallions and saute for a couple of minutes, stirring occasionally.

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Pour in the heavy cream, bring to a boil and stir well. When you first begin stirring the mixture, you'll get a cool tie-dye pattern!

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Simmer the sauce for 3-4 minutes, stirring or shaking the pan, until it thickens a bit.

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Add the crawfish, stir and bring back to a boil.  

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Add the cooked pasta to the pan and toss to coat well, until the pasta is heated through -- a couple of minutes or so.

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Serve immediately on warm plates, garnished with chive sprigs and freshly ground black pepper (optional).

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If you want to make this dish even more decadent, serve with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. 

The Cajun-Creole pasta is delicious with a chilled bottle of Ruffino Moscato D'Asti alongside.

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Photos by Ted Scheffler

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