Chef Dustie Latiolais

Crawfish Town USA in Henderson

Chef Dustie Latiolais at Crawfish Town USA

Tim Schooler Photograph

Dustie Latiolais, executive chef at Crawfish Town USA, started his culinary career at the age of 14 when he went to work as a fry cook at Pat’s Fisherman’s Wharf. While working his first stint at Crawfish Town USA, owner Johnny Hebert encouraged Latiolais to attend culinary school, and he hasn’t looked back since. After working in various prestigious restaurants around the state, he returned as executive chef to Crawfish Town USA in 2011 at the age of 24.

 Other competitive honors in 2008 include first place at the Baton Rouge Culinary Classic and third place in the Louisiana Alligator Soiree Competition Team, and in 2009 Latiolais garnered second place in the Baton Rouge Culinary Classic. In 2011 Latiolais took first place in the Seafood Category at the Opelousas Catholic School Tasting Event and also was a participant in the March of Dimes Fundraiser. In 2013 he was selected to participate in the Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off presented by Louisiana Seafood Marketing and Promotion Board. “Louisiana offers the most creativity opportunities in the nation,” he says.

Panko Encrusted Cypremort Point Soft-Shell Crabs with Tabasco Chipotle Aioli set atop Atchafalaya Crawfish Corn Maque Choux

Atchafalaya Crawfish Corn Maque Choux
• 4 fresh corn cobs, husk removed and cleaned
• 1/2 pound fresh crawfish tails
• 1/2 pound tasso, diced
• 1/2 cup red onion, small diced
• 1/2 cup green bell pepper, small diced
• 1 tomato, small diced
• 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
• 1/4 tablespoon cayenne pepper
• 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
• kosher salt, to taste
• 1/4 pound butter

Cut corn off the cob, reserve cobs for next step, using the back of the knife run the back down the cob to get corn juice/milk from the cob.
Place juice/milk and cut corn in a bowl and set aside.
Dice the onions, bell pepper and place in a container.
Dice tomatoes and place aside in a separate container.
Remove Tasso from package and dice them and place in a saucepan with butter.
Heat the burner on medium high.
Place saucepan with tasso and butter on burner. When butter melts add corn, onions and bell peppers.
Sauté for 2-3 minutes, then add crawfish tails and tomatoes.
Lower heat to medium and add Cajun seasoning, cayenne pepper, and salt to taste.
When salt is to your liking, add fresh thyme and turn heat off. Keep covered for later.

Tabasco Chipotle Aioli
• 4 garlic cloves
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt
• 3 medium egg yolks
• 1 pint vegetable oil
• 4 tablespoons Tabasco chipotle sauce
• 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Smash garlic cloves with side of knife and add salt.
Using the side of your knife, make a paste with garlic and salt.
Crack the eggs and separate the yolks and place them into a stainless steel mixing bowl.
Whisk the egg yolk and slowly add oil. Add a tablespoon at a time until using all the oil.
When done and aioli is a good consistency, add garlic paste, lemon juice and Tabasco chipotle sauce.
Set aside until service.

Soft-Shell Crabs
• 4 soft-shell crabs, cleaned (large/Whaler)
• 4 tablespoons Cajun seasoning

Season each crab with 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning.

Frying Soft-Shell Crabs
• 1/2 gallon vegetable oil
• 6-quart fry pan
• 1 fry basket
• 7 cups flour
• 7 cups Panko bread crumbs
• 6 eggs
• 1/2 gallon milk
• 2 tablespoons baking powder
• 1/4 cup Cajun seasoning

Mix egg, milk, baking powder and Cajun seasoning together in a bowl.
Set aside for later egg wash. Place oil in fry pan and place on stove on medium-high heat.
Maintain as close to 350 degrees as possible.
When heat is up to temperature start breading crabs: First pass crab in flour, then egg wash, then panko pressing firmly so breading stay on, then go straight to the grease.
Fry until crabs are golden-brown.
When done, place on pan with paper towels to soak up extra grease.

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