Cajun-style food has its roots in Louisiana, but its increasing popularity has caused Cajun restaurants to pop up in many states across the U.S. If you’re far from the south or simply in a landlocked state, you might not know what dishes truly embody Cajun cuisine (not to be confused with the New Orleans’ Creole). Here are three great dishes that will start you out on the right foot, though there are plenty more to be tried.
A true classic of the south, gumbo recipes come from a blend of Cajun and Creole styles. This stew includes the Cajun “Holy Trinity,” a mix of diced bell pepper, onion and celery that are frequently used as a flavorful base to many Cajun dishes. Gumbo frequently contains shrimp and sausage for its meat and is thickened by a flour and fat mixture called roux. With spices to top it off, gumbo is usually served over white rice.
Whether it’s crab, shrimp, crawfish, or mussels, you’ll be sure to find plenty of shellfish options in Cajun cooking. The seafood boil is the epitome of this, usually revolving around crab or shrimp and flavored with a zesty Cajun seasoning. Add some corn and potatoes and you’ll have one heck of a party on your plate. If you’re a seafood lover, it’s not hard to find a Cajun restaurant that serves a fantastic boil. Just searching for your location, like plano tx seafood restaurants, can bring great options within reach of your watering mouth.
Like gumbo in that it generally uses sausage and shellfish, jambalaya is a fantastic mixture of sautéed meat and vegetables, the “Holy Trinity” and a plethora of spices to give it a tangy kick. Instead of being prepared separately, the rice is added to the pot and cooked with the other ingredients, forming one giant pot of wholesome stew.
If you love spice and seafood mixed with hearty vegetables, you can’t go without trying these dishes. If you’re not sure, give it a shot anyway; your taste buds might surprise you.