Crawfish might sound like a Cajun delicacy, but these delicious shellfish are also harvested here in North Carolina. And it’s ok if you prefer to call them crayfish or crawdads, we know what you mean.
This weekend the State Farmers Market in Raleigh will host its popular Crawfish Day, featuring live and cooked crawfish from North Carolina growers. The event, sponsored by the N.C. Crawfish Grower’s Association, draws hundreds of people to the market each year.
Crawfish will be sold for $6 per pound live or $8 per pound cooked with Cajun seasoning. Vendors will be accepting cash only. There is a 5-pound minimum purchase for live crawfish and a pound minimum for cooked crawfish. There also is a 25-pound limit per person. No pre-orders will be accepted. Shoppers should bring their own coolers and plan to arrive early.
The Robert G. Shaw Piedmont Triad Farmers Market will host its Crawfish Day on Saturday, June 23.
Here are three simple and delicious crawfish recipes to try:
- 1 onion, quartered
- 6 cups hot water
- 1 lemon, quartered
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 clove garlic, halved
- 2 teaspoons red pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 pounds whole crawfish
Tie onion, lemon, garlic and bay leaf in a cheesecloth bag. Place cheesecloth bag in a large Dutch oven, and add water, salt, and red pepper; bring to a boil, and boil for 5 minutes. Add crawfish, and cook 5 minutes. Drain crawfish; peel and serve warm or chilled.
Freshwater Crawfish Etouffee
- 1 pound of peeled crawfish tails
- ½ cup of green onions, finely chopped
- 1 cup of celery, finely chopped
- 1 cup of white onions, finely chopped
- ½ cup of chopped parsley
- 1 stick of butter
- Seasoning to taste
Cook onions and celery in the butter on medium heat until translucent, about 20 minutes . Add the green onions and parsley and cook 10 minutes more. Season to taste. Add the crawfish and cook 8 minutes or until the tails curl. Serve over hot rice.
Fried Crawfish Tails
- 1 pound of crawfish tail meat
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Hot pepper sauce
- 1½ cups of plain flour
- ½ lemon
- 1½ teaspoons of baking powder
Sprinkle meat lightly with pepper sauce. Stir several times. Squeeze ½ lemon on meat and season to taste. Mix flour and baking powder and coat the tail meat. Shake off excess flour. Fry at 385 degrees F. until done (about 3 to 4 minutes) in a smaller fryer
The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services operates four farmers markets. The locations of these markets are Raleigh, Asheville, Charlotte and Colfax. Check out these other events at the markets in June.
WNC Farmers Market, Asheville
State Farmers Market, Raleigh
Piedmont Triad Farmers Market, Greensboro