Cajun and Creole

Emeril's Muffuletta
Photo: © Brian Doben

From shrimp-and-crab gumbo to a crab and andouille sausage jambalaya, here are great Cajun and Creole recipes.

01 of 17

Shrimp Étouffée

Shrimp Étouffée

On the road one day in New Orleans, I spent some time in the Crescent City Farmers Market and got a lesson in étouffée-making from the doyenne of Louisiana home cooking, Poppy Tooker. Étouffée is a riff on the old French verb “to smother,” and while there are as many recipes for étouffée as there are cooks who make it, this one is so easy that it’s become an instant classic in our house. I can’t imagine a better meal than a pot of étouffée, some rice, a salad and a ripe piece of fruit for dessert. —Andrew Zimmern

02 of 17

Creole Shrimp with Garlic and Lemon

Creole Shrimp with Garlic and Lemon
© Quentin Bacon

Eco-minded chefs are cooking with wild American shrimp, but not just for ethical reasons. As New Orleans chef Tory McPhail says, “They taste cleaner and crisper, since they swim in the tides.”

03 of 17

Spicy Pork Po'Boys

Spicy Pork Po'Boys

In Louisiana, a po’boy is a soft baguette filled with either fried seafood or meat. Melissa Rubel makes her po’boys with juicy grilled pork patties, topped with lettuce, tomato and a crunchy-creamy pickle-and-shallot mayonnaise.

04 of 17

Summer Jambalaya with Chicken and Spicy Sausage

Summer Jambalaya with Chicken and Spicy Sausage

Katy Sparks doesn’t agree that nursing mothers shouldn’t eat spicy foods. But if you want to lower the heat level in this recipe, substitute sweet sausage for the andouille and skip the poblano.

05 of 17

Andouille-and-Sweet Potato Pie with Tangy Apple Salad

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This creamy sweet potato filling is actually fairly simple, but Donald Link opts to prepare the crust by hand; he also tosses the salad with mustard greens, which can be tricky to find. In the easy way, make the crust in a food processor and substitute watercress for the mustard greens in the salad.

06 of 17

Creole Chicken and Ham Fried Rice

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This fried rice, studded with sautéed chicken and smoky ham, is softer and moister than the Asian version. Any kind of long- or medium-grain white rice works nicely here.

07 of 17

Crab and Andouille Jambalaya

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To make this jambalaya stand out, use incredible lump crabmeat, great andouille sausage and a good hit of Old Bay seasoning.

08 of 17

New Orleans Red Beans and Rice with Pickled Peppers

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In New Orleans, red beans and rice are traditionally served on Mondays because the dish uses up leftover Sunday ham. Grace Parisi likes making the recipe any day of the week, and she replaces the ham with smoky bacon.

09 of 17

Shrimp-and-Crab Gumbo

Donald Link: Shrimp-and-Crab Gumbo
 

This gumbo from New Orleans chef Donald Link owes its flavor to the roux, a mix of flour and oil that’s cooked until it’s coffee-colored.

10 of 17

Catfish Po'Boys with Pickle Remoulade

Catfish Po'Boys with Pickle Remoulade

Chef Jay Foster does brisk business in these fried-fish sandwiches at San Francisco's Outside Lands music festival.

11 of 17

Andouille, Crab and Oyster Gumbo

Andouille, Crab and Oyster Gumbo
© Con Poulos

“Deep in the Louisiana bayou, Cajuns still live off the land—trapping, shrimping, crabbing and hunting,” says Andrew Zimmern. “Cooks make gumbo with nutria, a giant, water-dwelling rodent. It’s a dish of need, not want. I learned my gumbo techniques from a trapper’s wife, but I use oysters and crab; no rodent required.”

12 of 17

Snapper with Spicy Crab-and-Andouille Sauce

Snapper with Spicy Crab-and-Andouille Sauce
© Tina Rupp

This recipe calls for Louisiana Gold Pepper Sauce—its pure chile flavor isn’t masked by the addition of vinegar, which some purists think interferes with the subtle flavors of foods like the buttery crab and andouille sauce that tops the succulent sautéed snapper here.

13 of 17

Corn Bread Stuffing with Shrimp and Andouille

Corn Bread Stuffing with Shrimp and Andouille

The stuffing can be refrigerated for 1 day before baking. Bring to room temperature before baking.

14 of 17

Okra Gumbo with Blue Crabs and Shrimp

Okra Gumbo with Blue Crabs and Shrimp

In this recipe from The Dooky Chase Cookbook, chef Leah Chase uses okra (and lots of it) to thicken the dish.

15 of 17

Chicken and Smoked-Sausage Gumbo

Try a sturdy red wine from the Languedoc-Roussillon region in southern France with this hearty gumbo.

16 of 17

Dirty Rice with Shrimp

Dirty Rice with Shrimp

Typically, in this popular Acadian classic, it's chopped chicken livers and ground meat that make the rice look "dirty." For our special version, we've left out the livers and added shrimp but kept the rest of the usual lineup—onion, celery, bell pepper, and garlic.

17 of 17

Emeril's Muffuletta

Emeril's Muffuletta
© Brian Doben

The muffuletta is the quintessential New Orleans sandwich of cured meats, cheese and tangy olive salad piled onto a sturdy Italian loaf. Emeril Lagasse’s delicious muffuletta is packed with briny olives and pickled vegetables.

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