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Spicy Fried Gator Nuggets with Remoulade

Updated on March 3, 2015
julescorriere profile image

Jules Corriere is a playwright and theater director, having written over 40 plays, one of them performing at the Kennedy Center in D.C.

Bite the Gator

Even though I was born in Opelousas, Louisiana, hometown of the American Alligator as well as Tony Chachere, I'd never combined the two until one of my projects, Swamp Gravy, took me to extreme southwest Georgia. At a county fair, I was able to try Gator-on-a-Stick. I admit that I probably would not have tried the gator if it had not been on a stick. Face it, all food on a stick is fun. But there is only one thing I could think of that would make alligator even more fun to eat: nuggets. Everyone loves nuggets. Kids, grown-ups, circus clowns. The other thing I thought the Gator-on-a-Stick needed was some bite. What's Gator without teeth, anyway? So I went home and created this spicy recipe, using the ultimate spice from my hometown, Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning. To give it even more bite, I have also included my mom's trusty remoulade recipe.

Spicy Gator Nuggets with Remoulade
Spicy Gator Nuggets with Remoulade

Spicy Fried Gator Nuggets

Ingredients

1 1/2 pound alligator meat, cut into nuggets

2 egg whites

2 Tbs. Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp lemon pepper

2 tsp McIlhenny Tobasco sauce

1 tsp Calumet baking powder

2 tsp cornstarch

½ Bottle fresh beer

(you know what to do with the other ½)

2 cups Pillsbury All-Purpose flour

1 cup yellow cornmeal

Lemon Wedges for Garnish

1 quart Crisco oil (Mom always used Crisco and nothing else)

Explaining the food chain to the alligator
Explaining the food chain to the alligator

Prep Work

Step One: Get one good size gator tail. Now this can pose a problem, as you first have to go out and find the gator and explain to him his position in the food chain. This may pose a problem, as he may not agree.

Step Two: Once the two of you have come to a sound understanding, there's the part about lugging the gator back to the kitchen. This could be a big job, depending on how many people you're feeding. For a normal size Southern family, a three footer is fine. But if you've got a wedding reception or a baby shower, you're gonna need at least an 8 footer, which makes Step One a little more interesting.

Step One Alternative: In the Southern states (that being places where you order Iced Tea and it comes sweet) you'll be able to purchase a pound of Gator Meat at your local Winn Dixie or IGA in the deli section. It's pretty economical and can be found near the hog jowls. If you are up North or out west, check out your local Trader Joe's or Fresh Market meat counter. It will be between the Sushi Tuna and Filet Mignon, and it will cost you the arm or leg you may otherwise have lost in the original Step One.

Step Three: Prepare the tail. You only want to use good tail meat. The white meat is the best. Unless you like the taste of swamp water, you'll want to stick to the tail meat. Those with a more exotic taste can go for some rib meat. Cut the tail meat into nugget size pieces. Call the grandkids to help. They love nuggets. Make it a family event. Besides, you'll need the help.

Step Four: Assemble the ingredients:

In a bowl, add egg whites, Tony Chachere's seasoning, cayenne pepper, lemon pepper, McIlhenny Tobasco sauce, baking powder and beer. Beat together until well mixed. Dissolve 2 tsp. cornstarch in a small amount of cold water and add to the liquid. Beat all ingredients until well mixed. Place a handful of nuggets in the egg solution. Coat well.

In a separate bowl with lid, mix all-purpose flour and yellow corn meal. Coat the nuggets in this mixture after dunking them in the egg solution, and prior to frying.

Heat oil to 375°F and fry for about 7 minutes or until they float to the top. Eat them as is, or try dipping them in a good old remoulade sauce. It's the tarter sauce of South Central LA. (Louisiana, that is.) Remoulade recipe follows.

Helpful Cooking Hints

When oil gets too hot, it may affect the taste of the nuggets. Keep the oil around 375 degrees.

Don't attempt to fry too many nuggets at one time. No mattter how tempting it may be to cook them all up at once and start eating them, resist the urge. If you put too many in at once, they will stick together. This could lead to uneven cooking, and will make gator blobs instead of gator nuggets.

Take a Bite Out of Gator?

Gator On A Stick
Gator On A Stick

Would You Ever Try Eating Gator?

See results
Remoulade Sauce
Remoulade Sauce

Remoulade

There's as many different ways to make remoulade as there are to say it. But this is the one I learned from my mom, who is from Opelousas, Louisiana, the hometown of Tony Chachere. (And also where I was born.) The sauce starts, of course, with the Holy Trinity of Creole Cooking: Onion, Celery, and Bell Pepper.

INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 cups Duke's Mayonnaise

1/4 cup diced celery

1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

1/2 cup very thinly sliced green onion

2 TBS finely minced garlic

1/2 cup Gulden's spicy mustard

1/2 cup Heinz Ketchup

1/4 cup parsley plus 1 TBS for garnish (Fresh is best)

1 tsp Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning

1 TBS lemon juice

1 TBS Worscester Sauce

2 TBS Horseradish

2 tsp McIlhenny Tobasco Sauce

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Holy Trinity of Creole Cooking
Holy Trinity of Creole Cooking

Remoulade Prep

PREPARATION

In a glass bowl, combine all ingredients. Cover and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least four hours for the flavors to combine.

Helpful Hints:

The finer you slice your celery and onion, the tastier the recipe will be. My grandpa used to be able to slice his veggies so thin you could read through them.

If you make the Remoulade a day ahead, you will have a tasty sauce with full bodied flavor.

Handy Short Cut

Sauce

If you don't have the time to go out and get your own Gator, or if your local grocery is all out, you can purchase both Alligator Meat and Remoulade Sauce online. Of course, nothing beats fresh, but Zatarain's makes a good Commercial sauce.

Alligator Meat you can order

Delivered straight to your door

Order it directly, keep it in the freezer until you are ready to use it. Have it on hand for family gatherings. Everyone loves Gator Nuggets.

Please Let Me Know What You Think

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      This stuff was sooooooo good that I think I am going back to Mississippi just to pick up more gator meat. My entire family loved it!!!

    • Musicalcroc LM profile image

      Musicalcroc LM 5 years ago

      Wow, alligator meat. I've never tried it but crispy nuggets must be nice. I also like the humour in how you present the recipe :)

    • profile image

      myamya 5 years ago

      Very interesting lens, great job!

    • profile image

      miaponzo 5 years ago

      Ew .. I don't know about this.. but it's certainly interesting!!! Blessed!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Stopping back to add a little angel dust to your very unique spicy fried gator chunks.

    • TolovajWordsmith profile image

      Tolovaj Publishing House 5 years ago from Ljubljana

      I bet they taste like chicken:)

      Thanks!

    • Einar A profile image

      Einar A 5 years ago

      This sounds so very good! Too bad I don't have any gators around here where I live...

    • Nightcat profile image

      Nightcat 5 years ago

      I've eaten gator before and this sounds much better than what I had. I don't think gator meat is supposed to crumble if you make it into a patty. Let's say I had one bite of that gator burger and that was it. But this sounds super! Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image

      Annamadagan 5 years ago

      Hmm... interesting. I don't know if I would like to try this. lol, nice lens though!

    • profile image

      reasonablerobby 5 years ago

      Amazing, something we don't have locally here in the UK, our biggest dangerous reptile is the Viper. I'd love to try some Alligator.

    • profile image

      seopintar 5 years ago

      It's looks delicious, but it's very difficult to find gator meat in my country. Crocodile meat is easier to find :xD

    • AnnaMKB profile image

      AnnaMKB 5 years ago

      Fantastic lens! *L*

      Up here in Edmonton, we do have a restaurant that sometimes has gator on the menu. They'd changed out their menu the last time we were there, and we missed it. Ah, well. The butcher shop we buy our tourtiere meat carries gator (as well as snake, camel, muskox...), and one of these days, I WILL get some and try it! :-D

    • ViJuvenate profile image

      ViJuvenate 5 years ago

      I love it. I have only eaten it once, but it was very juicy and delicious. It was gator on a stick at a festival.

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 5 years ago from Virginia

      I'm Baaaaaack! Had to fly over this lens again and agree that indeed I would try gator nuggets! Gosh, this lens has gotten better with time! Blessed by the COUNTRYLUTHER this day!

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 5 years ago from New Zealand

      I have never eaten gator, thank goodness we do not have them in New Zealand.

      But it's an interesting thought I do not know that I would eat it. It's a bit like eating possum in NZ, I would not eat that. Thanks for a interesting lens. Blessed

    • Commandrix profile image

      Heidi 5 years ago from Benson, IL

      I actually tried gator once at the Illinois state fair. It tastes like chicken! Might try this sometime if I ever get into a wrestling match with a gator, and win. LOL.

    • gypsyman27 lm profile image

      gypsyman27 lm 5 years ago

      I have tried alligator and I thought it was good. I didn't have nuggets, but I think that would be good as well. Good work on this page. See you around the galaxy...

    • JEMArtistry profile image

      JEMArtistry 5 years ago

      Sounds yummy! I had gator when I was in florida and it is very tasty. I love your instructions too! Thanks for sharing this. :)

    • RandomChuck profile image

      RandomChuck 5 years ago

      Willing to try anything once. Thanks for sharing.

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 5 years ago

      I wouldn't mind trying alligator meat, hopefully I will one day!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I cannot say that I would try it, but it looks delicious.

    • Faye Rutledge profile image

      Faye Rutledge 5 years ago from Concord VA

      I doubt I'll ever eat gator nuggets, but might try that Remoulade! Yum!

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 5 years ago

      I must admit that the ex was a little shaky about trying gator nuggets since he graduated from UF, home of the Gators. Me, on the other hand ... bring it on! The spicier the better.

    • Anthony Altorenna profile image

      Anthony Altorenna 5 years ago from Connecticut

      Wow, this is an interesting recipe and I would love to try your Spicy Fried Gator Nuggets. Can you send a batch up north?

    • fugeecat lm profile image

      fugeecat lm 5 years ago

      Sounds tasty. But only if i can pick the gator meat up at the local grocery. Don't want to have to hunt it down.

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 5 years ago

      Well... hummm I cannot say that I would try it.. ewe.. BUT I will say that you did a GREAT job at presenting it and if I were not such a chicken ... I would try it. Angel blessed lens! Yay for that huh? Smile.. YOU ROCK

    • Herman IV profile image

      Herman IV 5 years ago

      This just sounds delicious! I've had gator tail before so I might have to try that Remoulade prep.

    • kateclough lm profile image

      kateclough lm 5 years ago

      This is just absolutely priceless! :)

    • DeannaDiaz profile image

      DeannaDiaz 5 years ago

      Yummy!

    • darciefrench lm profile image

      darciefrench lm 5 years ago

      Came back to refresh the blessing on this cool spciy gator nuggets lens :)

    • BFunivcom profile image

      Allan R. Wallace 5 years ago from Wherever Human Rights Reign

      I treated my kids to 'gator pizza when we were traveling. That was fun.

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      Sounds quite delicious - I haven't had gator in over a year, and now I have a craving. Thanks for sharing! Blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      great topic, would love to see more food photo's some weird and some traditional but other then that, gave you a 'thumbs up'.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      How inventive of you, your gator chunks could become famous and I sure would be willing to give them a try!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Never tried a gator before and after reading through looks like it is a 'must have' at least once! :)