Cajun cuisine in NYC is not too popular. There are just a handful of restaurants that serve this fare. Well, last night, after consuming that artichoke and spinach slice of pizza from Artichoke Pizza, I decided I needed more to eat, (that's the type of diet the NYC FOODIE follows) so I stopped into Mara's Homemade, a Cajun/Southern restaurant, my younger sister and her boyfriend had raved about.
This kitschy little spot on East 6th street stands out for a bunch of reasons. For one, East 6th street is "Little India" here in NYC, and this joint surely ain't Indian! Secondly, the food here (at least what I tried) is really good, and they do wonders for one of the most underutilized (not including New Orleans) species in food, the crawfish.
I started with a dozen Gulf oysters for $6. Not only were these oysters fresh and great, but for what comes out to 50 cents an oyster is just an amazing bang for your buck! Slurping and smiling makes the NYC FOODIE very happy! Also, a sweet, freshly squeezed lemonade was a nice chaser for these tasty mollusks.
My pleasant waitress recommended those oysters and the lemonade, as well as the crawfish stuffed bread ($16), a homemade crawfish tail and cheese stuffing, baked in a hollowed out French baguette, crisp and gooey. This is the only way to diet friends. My first reaction to this dish was, as in the words of Emril Lagasse, "BAM!". Wow, this dish was amazing. The flavor was both powerful and delicious at the same time. A beautiful kick of spiciness, a touch of sweetness, and a truly wonderful Cajun experience!
So, for those times when you crave some Cajun fixins, Mara's Homemade is the perfect spot. Get whisked away to New Orleans in "Little India", in the East Village of NYC, have some crawfish, a drink, and smile.
342 E. 6th Street (bet. 1st and 2nd)
New York, NY 10003