Langouste à l’Armoricaine

Crayfish à l’Armoricaine

“À l’Armoricaine” must not be confused with the appellation “à l’Américaine”, given to the famous lobster dish. Armorique was the name of Brittany until the influx of Celts from Britain, when Brittany was an important province and duchy. The copper-coloured crawfish or langouste is much more popular in France than in England; it is usually larger than a lobster, and has no pincers or claws. The meat is more delicate and tender than that of a lobster.


  • 1 langouste
  • 2 small crabs, (and, when obtainable 1 thorn-back or spider-crab)
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 glass of white wine, mixed herbs
  • 2 shallots, butter, salt, pepper and cayenne


Melt ¼ lb. of butter in an earthenware casserole, cut the pieces of langouste in round pieces about 1 inch thick, and cook on a quick fire for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the pieces of langouste from the casserole, and add to the butter in which they were cooked a paste made by pounding in a mortar the shells and meat of the crabs and rubbing through a sieve. Stir this into the butter till perfectly smooth. Then add the finely chopped shallots, the herbs, the tomatoes, peeled and quartered, and the wine, and season with salt, pepper and cayenne. Simmer for 30 minutes and place the pieces of langouste in the sauce, and cook for a few minutes longer.