I admit it – I have OCD. Obsessive Crawfish Disorder. I start dreaming about those little red mudbugs at the first of the year, and I try to have them as many times as possible before the end of the season (which is around May or June usually). The start of crawfish season has all of my favorite things really. It usually coincides with Mardi Gras, so there are king cakes everywhere to be had. Next season you will get to see me making a gorgeous king cake too, since I had practice making a few by scratch this time. It wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be, but I learned some things too. Anyway, obviously the best way to enjoy these delicious crustaceans is to have a crawfish boil with your friends. You all get together, boil crawfish and the fixings (usually potatoes, corn, and sausage) and everyone eats in a really communal way. This year the weather’s been so warm that the little buggers have been enormous! We have had a lot left over even after everyone’s had their fill. The first boil I used the leftovers to make gumbo. This time, I decided to alter a recipe I’d seen online.
This was originally served at Copeland’s, I believe. I’ve made fried ravioli on its own before so I knew I could do that. I just altered it a bit and added a few things I thought would be good. This is a really quick recipe if you are using already cooked crawfish (or shrimp) but if you’re using frozen tails or raw shrimp, it only adds a few more minutes onto it. I cooked the ravioli first and then the sauce, and the ravioli were still piping hot when I put the sauce on. Here you go, and enjoy!
Fried Ravioli with Crawfish (or Shrimp) Cream Sauce
1 package refrigerated cheese ravioli
1c. Italian seasoned bread crumbs
2 eggs, well beaten
Oil for cooking
1 tbsp + 1 tbsp Tony Chachere’s or other cajun seasoning
1 onion, finely chopped
3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp minced garlic
1 lb crawfish tails with fat (can substitute shrimp)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup shredded parmesan
I will show you first the crawfish product I am working with. I took the tails from the boil the previous day and shelled them all to get that glorious tail meat. You can use frozen if you aren’t blessed with fresh delicious crawfish, or you can use shrimp either pre-cooked or raw and peeled/de-veined.
First thing to do is to set up your dredging station and heat your oil. Put about an inch of oil into a deep skillet or dutch oven and heat it to 350. IF you have a deep fryer you could also use this. My deep fryer is ginormous and bulky so I opted to pan fry. in a small bowl put your two eggs (and beat well), then in another bowl put your bread crumbs and 1 tbsp of the tony’s seasoning. Mix it well! Now you’re ready to dredge.
Coat the ravioli piece in the egg, shake it off, then press both sides down into the crumbs and set somewhere until you are ready to fry. Make sure you get all the excess off or it’ll break off in the oil and get nasty. I also try to only use one hand for dredging as it makes your fingers pretty grody too.
Time for frying! When your oil is hot enough, drop them in batches into it, flipping after a minute or two. It doesn’t take long at all for these babies to get done and they will plump up a bit when they are ready. If you are using a deep fryer, they will float to the top. Put them on some paper towel to draw
When you are done, you will have these beautiful pillows.
Now it’s time to build this sauce. It really takes no time at all. Melt the butter in a frying pan on medium high heat and add the garlic and onion, cooking for 3 minutes.
Add the crawfish and the tony’s. If you are using raw product, you might want to add another tsp or so of seasoning since the meat will be unseasoned. Mine was seasoned from the boil and I used a bit more than this and it was a tad too much. If your meat is cooked already, you just want to warm it up and mingle with the rest. IF it’s uncooked, then make sure it gets done but it’ll only take a couple minutes. Add the cream and simmer for a minute or two, then add the cheese and let it melt and thicken the sauce. Plate the ravioli and drop that down on top, and prepare for a mind blowing experience!