What is Cajun Food?

What is Cajun Food?

Cajun food is a style of cooking that originated from the Cajun-Acadians. They were deported by the British from Acadia, a colony of New France that is now Canada, in the 18th century during the French and Indian War. When the Cajun-Acadians were deported, many of them ended up in Southern Louisiana near New Orleans. 

Because the climate change between the northern part of the continent and the more southern part of the continent was so drastic, their ways of cooking had to change. They lost many of their culinary traditions and had to develop new meals and cooking styles, thus Cajun cooking was born.

Cajun-style food finds its influence from West African, French and Spanish cooking techniques. One of the most well-known features of Cajun cooking is “the trinity”, which comes from the French influence of “mirepoix”. While the classic mirepoix is made up of onions, celery and carrots, the trinity includes onion, celery and bell pepper. It’s said that no dish is truly Cajun without these three. Often the trinity will be accompanied by garlic, parsley and scallions. 

Some of the most popular Cajun foods include Boudin: a sausage made from pork, liver, rice, garlic and green onions, Gumbo: a type of soup and Jambalaya: a dish containing rice, meat, seafood and a mix of vegetables often including green pepper, onion, celery, tomato and hot peppers. Other popular dishes are blackened salmon, alligator, crawfish, catfish and dirty rice.

Cajun food is heavily rooted in seafood, a nod to the former Acadian lifestyle of using what the land around you provides. This means you will see fish, shrimp and other seafood abundant on a Cajun menu.  

When people have never tried Cajun food, they sometimes have misconceptions about it. They may think that all Cajun food is spicy, but the spice level depends on the dish and on the chef. Another misconception is that Cajun food is the same thing as Creole food. While they can both be found all across New Orleans, and both usually include the trinity, the two are not the same. In some places, like at Boudreaux’s you will find Cajun/Creole fusion for the best of both worlds. Both foods are rich in depth of flavor and vibrant culture that is absolutely worth a try.

Visit our website at www.boudreauxscajungrill.com to view our menu that is full of flavor with choices of Creole, Cajun and Acadian-inspired dishes.