Crawfish College

 

 

 

The first class of the Crawfish College in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana has picked six journalists to evaluate the program and offer suggestions before opening to the general public. Crawfish is such a huge part of the culture, it is a wonder culinary opportunity.

Pont Breaux Restaurant with Host Randy LeBlanc & Son
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Pont Breaux Restaurant with Host Randy LeBlanc & Son

We officially started Tuesday night with a dinner reception with Cajun cuisine, music and dancing at Pont Breau Restaurant, where we were hosted by Randy LeBlanc and son.

The action started Wednesday after a country style breakfast at Bayou Bodin Cabins, Breaux Bridge. This is where the famous Hunter Hayes got started and they just had a homecoming party and concert for him on Sunday. They have a Hunter wall, as he got his start playing their as a child.

Hunter Hayes Wall at Bayou Boudin Cabins Photo: Maralyn D. Hill
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Hunter Hayes Wall at Bayou Boudin Cabins Photo: Maralyn D. Hill

After a quick stop to check out the beautiful Isabelle Inn (where I’d love to stay sometime in the future), we were off to do the crawfishing.

Clyde Dumping Crawfish Trap Photo: Maralyn D. Hill
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Clyde Dumping Crawfish Trap Photo: Maralyn D. Hill

We ventured out on a boat after some instructions from Michael Clay. The pond is only a few feet deep. We learned the baiting of the trips, as well as pulling them up and sorting. When it was my turn at pulling traps, it was a great deal of fun and a sense of accomplishment to keep up with the boat approaching them.

Once the traps were dumped, someone else was sorting to get the bait (a fish) thrown out. The purpose, only clean crawfish go into the bags. We gathered 3-1/2 bags and the other boat got four. Each bag is about 30 pounds.

Crawfish Being Picked for Race--Photo Maralyn D. Hill
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Crawfish Being Picked for Race–Photo Maralyn D. Hill

We made a quick stop at CJ’s Processing Plant in Breaux Bridge and Mike LeBlac explained their clean, safe processing approach. Hungry from the work, we stopped at Poche’s Cajun plate lunch.

This store has all sorts of delicious sauces, dishes, spices, and ready made dishes to take home. I got some garlic sauce that was too good to pass up and some pralines.

We squeezed in time for a stop at Acadiana’s premier micro-brewery, Bayou Teche Brewing, Arnaudville, owned by the Knott Family. The tasting room is so neat with all the graphic artwork and for those who enjoy beer, they loved it. This concern is a true success story.

Time for a shower and an excellent dinner of Cajun cuisine, music and dancing at Cafe Des Amis, Breau Bridge, hosted by Dickie Breaux.

Tomorrow is an early morning, as we are going to the basin to do more crawfishing and back to a camp to peel and stem, or however and whatever we are going to do.

Long day and time for bed, but it was fun sharing a new experience.

There is more to come. If you think you would be interested in something like this, let me know or you can write Dona Degatur Richard at ddr@cajuncountry.org.

 

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