Cooking Cajun Food
Cooking in the Cajun Country of lower Louisiana is almost considered a art form. Cajun Cooking has been imitated all over the USA and the rest of the world but there are lots of pretenders and very few people who have truly mastered the real art form of Cajun cooking. In order to duplicate Cajun cooking you have to be able to duplicate the Cajun recipes and make them the Cajun way.
Roux is a big part of Cajun Cooking and you really have to know how to make a delicious roux the right way in order for your Cajun dishes to turn out delicious and authentic. In order to make a roux and make it right you need to start out with equal amounts of plain all purpose flour and shortening like Crisco. In order to make a roux and have it turn out authentic you also need a cast iron pan or dutch oven to cook your roux in. You also really need a wire whisk because you need to keep that roux stirred and you need to stir it often. Place your cast iron pan on a burner on medium heat and to that pan add 2 cups of shortening and as soon as that shortening melts immediately start to work the plain all purpose flour into the liquefied shortening. Its very important that it be two cups of flour and you need to work that flour into your shortening a bit at a time. Resist the urge to turn up the heat to try to hurry your roux. Hurried roux will burn or not turn out right.
As you add the flour keep stirring the flour into the shortening with the wire whisk until you have all the flour whisked into the shortening and keep stirring the mixture of flour and shortening often. Now here comes the important part. You want to keep cooking and stirring that roux until you have it the same color of an old copper penny. Once it reaches that color you can rake your roux out into a dish or container to cool. Caution if you rake it out into a plastic container it may melt through the container because it will be very hot. You can store your roux in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks before you use it in a Cajun dish you are making. If your roux ever burns during the cooking process throw it out and start over. And if you followed along carefully you now know how to make a authentic Cajun roux. You could then go to the above link and make delicious Cajun Gumbo.
Okra is the heart and soul of Cajun Cooking.
Okra should always go in Gumbo and most Cajun dishes as Okra is the heart and soul of a good Cajun recipe. I bet you didn't know that Gumbo is the word for Okra in many parts of the world. And yes okra belongs in Gumbo. I just simply love okra and I put it in all my Gumbo. I also put it in other Cajun dishes and I like it deep fried and pan fried. If you don't put Okra in your Gumbo then your leaving out part of the heart and soul of most Cajun dishes. Plus okra goes a long way towards thickening your Gumbo and other Cajun dishes. And if I don't have it in the dish I have it on the table either pan fried or deep fried.
Cajun Cooking is so fascinating because no recipe is written in stone. If you think an item would taste great in your Gumbo give it a try. You really need to cook to taste with most Cajun recipes. I always cook to taste and I taste as I'm cooking. If I think it needs a bit more of this or that I add it and most of the time my Cajun recipes turn out wonderful. And keep in mind that you need to put your heart and soul into Cajun cooking. I really believe that the knowledge and the mood of the person doing the cooking has a lot to do with how your Cajun recipes will turn out. And in case you missed it above always know that being able to make a great roux and having it turn out right is a big part of any Cajun cooking. Your roux must be right or your Cajun dish will never turn out right.
If your going to be doing a lot of Cajun Cooking search around at your local supermarkets and find the right ingredients for your Cajun Cooking. You can now find a lot of ingredients like crayfish and andouille sausage in your local supermarkets. Check out the spice section for great Cajun spices.
I guarantee you that Cajun Cooking can try your patience but once you get the roux recipe down and your able to make a great roux the rest will fall into place. And if you ever have questions about Cajun Cooking feel free to ask your questions in the comments section below. And thanks for reading my Hub Page on Cajun Cooking.