Lafayette, LA (KPEL News) - The phrase "Cajun Caviar" or "Louisiana Caviar" may conjure up images of a bean medley tossed in a wine and lemon juice dressing. Scoop it up with your favorite chip, and bon appetit!

You may be surprised to discover that Cajun Caviar really is, well, caviar, as in fish eggs.

The Louisiana Caviar Company introduced the delicacy in 1986. The black roe, or fish eggs, are from the Choupique. We Cajuns may recognize the name spelled phonetically: Shoe-Pick.

I was surprised to learn, through the Cajun Caviar company website, that the choupique or bowfin:

is one of only three true caviar producing species found in the USA.

The other two are sturgeon and paddlefish.

The choupique roe is harvested in the fresh waters of the Atchafalaya Basin from December through February.

The company packages it without artificial additives, colors, or preservatives. It tastes lightly salted without an overtly fishy flavor.

Cajun Caviar is sold at Rouses locations in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, as well as other locations in Florida and Texas. The New Orleans-area based company makes the product available at stores in the southeast Louisiana area. It's also available online.

For folks (and by folks, I mean me) who are used to popping the tail off their seafood delicacy, the little balls in a glass bowl may be confusing. Do you grab a spoon and dig in?

Thankfully, Caviar Lover shared the proper way to eat caviar.

  1. Serve it cold, in a glass bowl set on ice to keep it cold.
  2. You can eat it alone with the right utensil, preferably a non-metal spoon.
  3. You can eat it with a piece of toasted bread or cracker with a little butter. You'll notice, thought, that Cajun Caviar has several suggestions on their Facebook page about what to eat it with.
  4. Eat only a small portion, about 2-3 teaspoons.
  5. Like when you eat oysters, you shouldn't chew them.
  6. Caviar pairs well with vodka.

The word "caviar" also brings to mind Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. You don't need to be famous to enjoy the delicacy born of Cajun waters, but you will certainly need to have more than a bit of discretionary income.

Two ounces of Cajun Caviar costs $85-90.

Definitely a delicacy and, if you'd like to try it, a treat.

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