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From Alligator to Zydeco: A Cajun Dictionary (contributions welcome!)
BuybyMail:Cajun Dictionary ^

Posted on 12/17/2005 8:36:15 AM PST by yankeedame


Alligator A large reptile, Alligator mississipiensis of the southeast United States A good white meat with a pork like texture.

Alligator Pear Merliton

Allons (ah lahn) Let's go

Anyways "And then" or "And so"

Ax Ask


Bayou The outlet of a lake or one of the delta streams of a river.

Bahbin To pout

Beignets A square fried pastry, a cross between a cruller and a donut without the hole, served hot and sprinkled liberally with confectioners sugar.

Binhavin To have had something for a long time (been having)

Bobo A small wound or injury

Bon Appetite French phrase meaning literally "good appetite" or enjoy.

Boo A term of endearment

Boucherie (boo sher ee) A family or neighborhood gathering to help slaughter a hog. All share in the process and share in the proceeds.

Boudin A Cajun sausage with cook rice mixed into the stuffing.


Ca c'est bon (sa say bohn) That's good

Cafe Au Lait Coffee and Chichory blended with milk, usually a half and half mixture of hot coffee and hot milk.

Ca va (sa va) That's enough

C'est tout (say too) That's all

Cher (sha) Honey or dear when speaking to the opposite sex, buddy or pal when addressing the same sex.

Chicory An her, the roots of which are dried, ground and used to flavor coffee, chiefly in New Orleans

Chiren Infants or young ones, children

Cochon De Lait A Cajun tradition, in which a young pig is roasted over and open pit. Today, this describes a method of preparing pork.

Courtboullion (coo be ahn) A thick rich fish stew made with tomatoes, onions and sometimes mixed vegetables. Gasper goo is an excellent fish for this dish.

Chu Chut A general substitute for naming any small item or device.

Cooyon Stupid, dumb, also an educated fool.

Crawfish Resembling lobsters, but are much smaller and have sweeter meat, also called "mudbugs."

Crawfish Boil A party in a sack. Crawfish in a large pot with corn on the cob, potatoes, and seasoning in boiling water.

Creole A person of European Spanish descent of mixed African


DaDa the

Dat that

Dem them


Do-Do (Make Do-Do) To go to sleep, one of the first terms some Louisiana children learn.

Dressed Referring to a sandwich or Po-Boy, this means add mayonnaise, lettuce, and tomatoes.


Envie (Ohn vee) Your heart's desire or a very strong craving.

Esplande A walkway


Fais Do Do Party where a traditional Cajun dance is performed. [French phrase meaning literally "to make sleep."

Filé (fee lay) Ground sassafras leaves use to season gumbo and other dishes.


Garry Porch (probably a corruption of the garret)

Getting down Getting out of the car.

Gris Gris A (voodoo) spell


Hafass Low grade, half-hearted, inferior


Joie de vivre (jhwa de veev) Joy of living


King Cake A ring shaped oval pastry, decorated with colored sugar in the traditional Mardi Gras colors (purple, green and gold) which represent justice, faith and power. A small plastic baby is hidden inside the cake. The person who gets the baby in their piece is traditionally supposed to provide the next King Cake.


Lache pas la patate (losh pa la pa tot) Don't let go of the potato or don't give up. (A testament to the enduring spirit of the Cajun people.)

Lagniappe Cajun word for "something extra."

Laissez les bon temps roulez Literally means to "let the good times roll."


Macquechoux (Mock Shoe) A delicious Cajun dish made with corn

Mais Well (begins many French and English sentences.)

Make Groceries To go grocery shopping

Mardi Gras Commonly called Fat Tuesday - the day before Ash Wednesday, the first

Me Same as in English, but frequently used with I as in "Me, I went to make groceries."

Merci (mare see) Thanks

Moodee Cursed, foul, no good.

Mudbug Term for crawfish


Nannan (Na nan) Word meaning grandmother

Noonie A baby's pacifier

Nonc (Nonk) Uncle

Nort North

Nuttin Nothing


Parish A Louisiana state district. Analogous to the word "county."

Parrain Godfather

Pass a mop To mop the floor

Pauve ti bete (pove tee bet) Poor little thing.

Pirogue A small shallow boat that can hold no more that 2 people.

Po Boy A sandwich that is always made on French bread and can be filled with different fried seafood, roast beef and gravy, pork, meatballs, and more. Contraction of Poor Boy.

Praline A candy patty made


Red Beans and Rice Red beans cooked with ham or sausage and seasonings and served over rice.

Roday To run around, on the go

Roux (Rew) "First you make a roux." It is the base for many Louisiana dishes (a slow browning of oil and flour.) It is what makes a gumbo great.


Sauce Picante A spicy sauce containing tomatoes, read peppers, and seasonings.

Stoop The fronts steps of a house.


T Used in front of any name, "T" means petit (little); T'Sam etc.

Teet Teeth


Where you at? Where are you?

Who Dat A typical die hard New Orleans Saints Fan.


Y'all Short for you all.


Zinc A basin in the kitchen, sink. Chiefly New Orleans.

Zydeco Cajun dance music. A combination of traditional Cajun dance music and African blues.

TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Education; Miscellaneous; Reference
Came across this while looking on-line for a Hoppin' John mix -- a la Zatarain's Red Beans and Rice, etc. mixes -- to send a couple of boxes to our active duty Sons-of-the-South over there in Afganistan and Iraq. Anyway, saw this little dictionary and thought, "Ah, what the heck?"

By the by, does anyone know if they even have Hoppin' John in ready-made, just-add-water-and-oil, boxed mix? I've been to quite a few on-line Canjun groceries all ready but no luck so far.

1 posted on 12/17/2005 8:36:16 AM PST by yankeedame
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To: yankeedame
Double-barreled shot-gun Twice-barrel shoot gun.
2 posted on 12/17/2005 8:57:15 AM PST by johnny7 (“Check out the big brain on Brett!”)
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To: yankeedame
Suggest that you google "hush puppies" or "corn fritters"
3 posted on 12/17/2005 9:08:28 AM PST by LOC1
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To: yankeedame

Fanboat = "Basic Transportation"

4 posted on 12/17/2005 9:47:34 AM PST by martin_fierro (Famous Insomniac)
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To: yankeedame


No etoufee?

Crawfish Etouffee
Source: Chef Paul Prudhomme
8 servings

2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp dried sweet basil leaves
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves

1/4 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped green bell peppers
7 tb. vegetable oil
3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 lbs. peeled crawfish tails or medium shrimps
1 cup very finely chopped green onions
4 cups hot BASIC COOKED Rice

Combine seasoning mix ingredients in small bowl. Set aside. In separate bowl combine the onions, celery & bell peppers. In large heavy skillet heat the oil in high heat until it begins to smoke. With long handled metal whisk, gradually mix in the flour, stirring until smooth. Continue cooking whisking constantly, until ROUX is dark red brown (abt. 3-5 minutes). Remone from heat & immediately stir in the vegetables & 1 Tb. of the seasoning mix with a wooden spoon; continue stirring until cooled (abt. 5 minutes).

In a 2 qt. saucepan bring 2 cups of the stock to boil over high heat. Gradually add the roux & whisk until thoroughly dissolved. Reduce heat to low & cook until the flour taste is gone, about 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Remove from heat & set aside.

Heat the serving plates in a 250 oven.

In a 4 qt. saucepan melt 1 stick of the butter over medium heat. Stir in the crawfish & the green onions; sauté about 1 minute stirring constantly. Add the remaining stick of butter, the stock mixture & the remaining 1 cup of stock; cook until butter melts & is mixed into the sauce, about 4-6 minutes, constantly shaking the pan in a back & forth motion (versus stirring). Add the remaining seasoning mix; stir well & remove from heat (if sauce starts separating, add about 2 more TB of stock or water & shake pan until it combines). Serve immediately.

To serve, mound 1/2 cup of rice on each heated serving plate. Surround the rice with 3/4 cup of the etouffee.

5 posted on 12/17/2005 2:32:38 PM PST by dixiechick2000
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