Cajun and Creole are two different ethnic groups with a spectacular history and culture of their own. One commonality between the two groups is their enormous contribution to the State of Louisiana and New Orleans.
There are subtle and significant differences between them. An average American tends to use the terms interchangeably, and after reading the differences, it will change their perception.
But Cajun and Creole must be respected for their differences. On the surface, Creole is known as city food, and Cajun is known as country food. We will break the misconception for you.
What is “Cajun”?
Cajun does not signify a cuisine. It refers to a group of people and cultures. They are French colonists from Canada. When the British took over their country in 1713, Cajuns, known as Acadians, started making their way to the Louisiana territories. Here, they were called Cajuns and developed a distinct culture.
What is “Creole”?
Creole is complex to define. It refers to a group of individuals born in Louisiana with a mix of Spanish, Africa, French and Caribbean heritage. Their culture includes its own language, culture and cuisine.
Spot the difference
You will not be able to tell the differences between Creole and Cajun unless you are intimately acquainted with their communities. One way to spot them is by the Creole gumbo. This gumbo has tomato, okra and a platter of meats and seafood. The gumbo of Cajun never mixes meat and seafood, and okra is usually not a part of this preparation. The other unique difference between these two is that Creole food uses tomato-based sauces in their recipes a lot and Cajun food does not.
Cajun food combines both French and Southern cuisines. It comprises a lot of smoked meats, one-pot dishes or spicy pork sausage. Although Cajun food can be found all over New Orleans, the authentic Cajun lies northwest of the city in areas like Breaux Bridge.
This cuisine contains strong French influences. Rich sauces, local herbs, ripe tomatoes, and prominent local caught seafood dominate Creole cuisine.
Similarities between Cajun and Creole cuisines
Both cuisines use green peppers, onions and celery liberally. Though not spicy, the Cajun and the Creole cuisines have a depth of flavour.
If you are determined to try authentic Cajun and Creole dishes, Louisiana is one place you won’t regret. It still adheres to its rich heritage and reputation by being true to its tradition.
The new generation is still holding onto its culture dearly, which is the secret to its sustenance in the current times. When you are there, the phenomenal tastes of both these cuisines will make you forget the debate of Cajun Vs Creole.