Vol-Au-Vent of Louisiana Seafood

This is a delectable combination of fresh local shellfish in a rich, slightly spicy sauce. The vol-au-vent (a large version of what Orleanians call a “patty shell”) can be bought fresh from a French baker.

Vol-au-vent of various Louisiana seafoods.

  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 Tbs. chopped French shallots
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Pinch saffron threads
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper
  • Pinch cayenne
  • Pinch ground ginger
  • 3 lbs. crawfish tails
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh tarragon, chopped (or 1/2 tsp. dried)
  • 6 large vol-au-vents (puff pastry shells)

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the green onions and shallots until they’re limp.

2. Add the wine and bring it to a boil. Reduce until most of the liquid is gone. Add the cream, saffron, salt, pepper, cayenne and ginger, and bring to a light boil. (Also add tarragon at this point if using dried.)

3. Add crawfish tail meat. Cook for two more minutes, agitating the pan, until the heat is distributed equally throughout the now-steaming crawfish.

4. Put the vol-au-vents into the preheated oven for about two minutes. Remove from the oven, and spoon the crawfish into a puff pastry shell, until crawfish and sauce run over the top and onto the plate.

Serves six.

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