1 lb. cleaned crawfish tails, commercial kind
crawfish fat and water to make 3/4 cup
1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
1 stick margarine or butter
1 medium onion, chopped fine
1 heaping teaspoon all purpose flour
1 tablespoon parsley
1 teaspoon salt
2 very thin slices lemon
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon green onion
Use a saucepan with a tight fitting lid to etouffee, (French for smother). Season crawfish tails with salt and pepper, set aside. Melt butter, add onion, cook over medium heat until tender. Stir in the flour, blend well. Add water, crawfish fat, lemon, tomato and garlic. Cook slowly, about 20 minutes, and add a little more water occasionally.
When sauce is done, add crawfish tails, cover with lid. Cook 8 minutes. Season again, to taste. Add green onion and parsley, cook 2 minutes longer.
Serve on steamed rice. Garlic bread and green salad is a good companion to crawfish etouffee.
COOKING TIP: Commercial crawfish are pasteurized and practically cooked. If you are using live crawfish, wash, then scald in boiling water. Clean them, picking off the shells, leaving tails whole. Save crawfish fat.
When tails and fat from live crawfish are added to cooked mixture, it should be cooked 10 or 15 minutes longer.