Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Crayfish and Potatoes Salad

When I used to work in Paris, I was traveling to England a lot. I always loved to travel (some) for work as it gave me an extra opportunity to discover places I had never been before (but who on earth want to do tourism in Basingstoke, dites-moi?). On some occasions, I could also meet up with friends living in London and that was always a plus. One thing I came across while in London was the Prêt à Manger delis. They had the best fancy sandwiches ever (back then) and it was a compulsory stop for me. I would particularly love their crayfish (écrevisses in French) sandwich with fresh arugula. I would get it often and would enjoy every bite of it!
When I moved to the US, I was happy to discover that they were actually opening locations in New York City. Not that we lived close to New York City (Upstate New York feels VERY far from New York City). But somehow, it made me feel better. Unfortunately for me, they did not offer my favorite sandwich.  I do remember reading that one of their main challenges was to make New Yorkers love crayfish!
The other one was to succeed as an "healthy alternative to fast-food" with McDonald's owning about 33% stake in the company. Apparently, from reading their US menu, they have not succeeded in making Americans eat more crayfish sandwiches yet... As for the healthy alternative, McDonald's sold their share in 2008...
To follow up with business data (I can't help, it's my background coming back), more than 80% of the worldwide production of crayfish comes from Louisiana and about 70% is eaten locally. Voilà, maybe that's the reason! Were Prêt à Manger open a location in Louisiana, for sure they'll have crayfish sandwiches on their menu!! Not that it would really make much of a difference to me considering where I live today! But somehow, New York City felt further away from Upstate New York than Louisiana is from Philadelphia!

Instead of having a sandwich, here is a simple recipe for a crayfish salad to make at home on a Sunday evening instead of pizza/pasta/rice/take-out. No matter how you eat your crayfish, it's best to take the eatable part out of the crayfish before dinner so that it does not get too messy everybody is eating at the same pace. For once, I used mayonnaise for the dressing and since I had not started to make my own mayonnaise yet, it was store-bought. Personne n'est parfait! Bon Appétit!

Serves 4

- Crawfish (about 2 pounds), tail meat out.
- 2 celery stalks, cut in small pieces
- 1 tomato, diced
- 4 potatoes, cut in cubes
- Dill
- Mayonnaise
- Salt and black pepper to taste

  • Boil the potatoes and let them cool down.
  • Mix potatoes, celery, tomato, dill and mayonnaise
  • Add crawfish, salt and pepper to taste
  • Serve cold with a green salad
My Personal Comments:
  • You could add pieces of radishes for extra crunchiness
  • Don't underestimate how much you purchase; crayfish is really deceptive.

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