While live crawfish is available for only a few months every year, cooked crawfish is available all year round. Reheating crawfish is fairly simple and doesn't take too long.
Read more: How to Cook Frozen Tilapia on the Stove
Crawfish, a Louisiana Specialty
The Texas A&M University notes that crawfish is a freshwater crustacean that has been a part of Louisiana's culture for centuries. Crawfish boils, a popular type of Cajun cookout, are social get-togethers among families, friends or neighbors.
Crawfish boils are usually hosted during crawfish season, which runs from late winter to early summer, and they typically feature sacks of live crawfish boiled in a flavored broth. Potatoes, corn and sausages are some of the sides served with the crawfish, along with a tangy cocktail sauce.
As lovely as that sounds, you have to make do with frozen crawfish if it's not the right time of year. Crawfish is often fully cooked or partially cooked before it is frozen, so you just need to reheat it.
A rich source of high-quality protein, crawfish has a fairly low calorie, fat and saturated fat content. According to the USDA, 1 cup of cooked crawfish has 113 calories, 23.3 grams of protein, 1.67 grams of fat and 0 grams of carbs. It also contains other nutrients like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, vitamin A and B vitamins.
While crawfish does contain cholesterol, a June 2018 study published in the journal Nutrients found that foods that contain cholesterol are not necessarily bad for heart health; it's the combination of cholesterol and saturated fat that harms your heart. Since crawfish contains very little saturated fat, it can be a good addition to your diet.
In fact, crawfish is also easier on your digestive system than other types of meat. The University of Minnesota explains that crawfish is highly digestible because the muscle fibers are very short. While crawfish meat tastes similar to lobster, it is sweeter and more tender. The fact that it's less expensive doesn't hurt either.
According to the University of Minnesota, raw crawfish takes about 10 to 15 minutes to cook. Cooking it for too long or at a very high temperature can cause it to get overcooked. A December 2016 study published in the journal Foods notes that overcooked shellfish loses its flavor and becomes tough and dry. Therefore, you need to be careful while reheating crawfish that is already cooked; you want it to get heated through but you don't want it to cook much more, since that will cause it to get tough.
Most companies list cooking times and instructions on the packaging. Apart from the shorter cooking time, the cooking method for whole, cooked crawfish is similar to that for raw, live crawfish. These are the instructions listed by Cajun Crawfish for their Whole-Cooked Crawfish product:
- Thaw the crawfish: Take off the outer packaging and place the entire bag of crawfish in a sink of water. Let it defrost for three to four hours.
- Boil the crawfish: Bring a pot of water to boil. Add the seasoning mix to the water. Drain the liquid from the crawfish and add it to the pot. Let the water come to a simmer and then switch off the heat. Let the crawfish soak in the pot for five to eight minutes.
- Serve immediately: You can adjust the amount of seasoning you add to the crawfish, depending on how spicy you like it.
Read more: How to Cook Fish Without Oil
- Texas A&M University: “Enjoying Louisiana Crawfish”
- Texas A&M University: “Boiled Crawfish”
- USDA: “Crayfish, Boiled or Steamed”
- University of Minnesota: “A Craving for Crayfish: Minnesota Discovers a Louisiana Tradition”
- Nutrients: “Dietary Cholesterol and the Lack of Evidence in Cardiovascular Disease”
- Foods: “Seafood Safety and Quality: The Consumer’s Role”
- Cajun Crawfish: “Whole-Cooked Crawfish”