Tomatoe, tomatoh. Potatoe, potatoh. Crayfish, crawfish. No matter what you call these small lobster lookalikes, they’re good to go in a big soup pot. And you know what? They’re even better with bacon. They were selling them alive in Chinatown but they were left out in the cold–that made it easy enough to pull their heads from their bodies. I put all the heads in a soup pot to make broth while I chopped up some vegetables for this recipe. Peeling the tails was another story. It’s a lot of work with so little yield; I should have gotten more than two pounds. But in the end, my rice was delicious and it was even better with some barbequed pork.
2 pounds crayfish, washed
4 ribs of celery, 2 finely chopped, 2 cut in smaller pieces
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 red onions, 1 finely chopped, 1 halved
3 cups rice
salt, pepper, oil
1. Make crayfish broth. Separate the crayfish heads from the tails. Put the heads in a big soup pot with some water and let it boil. Add the halved onion and the big celery ribs with some salt. Simmer until ready to use. Peel tails and devein. Chop in smaller pieces.
2. In a skillet, render fat off bacon until crisp. Remove to a plate lined with paper towel. When cool enough to handle, finely chop bacon. Set aside.
3. Using some of the bacon fat, sautÃ© garlic and onions. Add crayfish, celery and pepper and sautÃ© until tender. Season with salt and pepper. Add rice and 3 cups of the crayfish broth. Cover and cook the rice in medium fire. Check often and add more broth to keep it from drying. When rice is almost done, fluff with a spatula and mix until combined well. Turn off the fire, cover the pot and let the remaining heat finish cooking the rice.
Crayfish Creamed Corn Soup