Chef John Folse's Seafood Sauce Piquant St. James

Prep Time: 1½ Hours

Yields: 10 Servings


Seafood sauce piquant is a great example of the combination of different influences in Creole cooking. The sauce piquant, meaning hot or spicy, gets its flavor from the hot Spanish peppers that came to Louisiana from South America. The French brown roux adds color and enhances flavor in the dish. Five to six pounds of turtle or other domestic meat may be substituted for the seafood.


6 fresh fish fillets, cubed

1 pound crawfish tails

6 crabs, cleaned and halved

3 pounds (50-60 count) shrimp

1½ cups vegetable oil

1½ cups flour

3 cups diced onions

2 cups diced celery

1 cup diced bell peppers

½ cup minced garlic

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

2 (10-ounce) cans Rotel® tomatoes

1 gallon hot water or seafood stock (see recipe)

salt and black pepper to taste

Louisiana hot sauce to taste

2 cups sliced green onions

1 cup chopped parsley


In a 12-quart Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Whisk in flour, stirring constantly until a dark brown roux is achieved (see roux recipes). Add onions, celery and bell peppers. Cook 3-5 minutes or until vegetables are wilted. Stir in garlic and tomato sauce. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally then add tomatoes. Pour in hot stock, 1 cup at a time, until it a stew-like consistency is achieved. Do not use all of stock. Bring to a rolling boil then reduce to simmer and add ¼ of each seafood. Cook 30-40 minutes, adding stock as necessary to maintain consistency. Season to taste with salt, pepper and hot sauce. Add remaining seafood, green onions and parsley. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce to simmer and cook 3-5 minutes or until seafood is done but not overcooked. Stew should be consistency of a heavy whipping cream. Adjust seasonings if necessary and serve over steamed white rice.