Gamberi di fiume (crayfish) alla Busara


The meaning of the word busara is open to much debate in food historian circles. Was it a cooking pot used by the original dalmatian creators? Or is it dialect meaning stomach? Whatever it is, I did my own interpretation when the crawfish were ready to serve. With grand flourish like a magician’s Abracadabra! I presented this dish with a hungry alla busara! and it disappeared in no time at all.

Crawfish alla Busara (serves 2)

10-12 large, crawfish or shrimp [or calculate for 2 servings]
Olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup white wine
1 can (14-15 oz.) whole tomatoes
a small handful of fresh breadcrumbs (run a thick slice through a food processor)
Fresh herbs: about 1 Tbsp. each of marjoram and thyme and 2 Tbsps. of italian parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt lightly and add the crawfish. Cook until they turn a bright orange, about 3-5 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Saute the garlic and onions in a couple tablespoons of olive oil until fragrant. Add the wine and simmer for a few minutes. Stir in the tomatoes (along with their liquid) and continue to cook over low heat for about 10 minutes, smashing them with the back of a wooden spoon. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Lastly, add the breadcrumbs and herbs, stir to combine then add the crawfish. Allow them to heat through and serve immediately with fresh bread to mop up the sauce.


See also: Shrimp alla buzara by Lidia Bastianich


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