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It's Really HOT at
in Southern Louisiana!
Frogging is a blast!
by Mike Lane
All you need is a
sack, a multimillion candle power searchlight, a lease with freshwater ponds and
a $14,000 mudboat... or
Hire an experienced frogging guide. Then
all you have to do is bring an ice chest, some old clothes, a Louisiana fresh
water fishing license and have a ball!
The two types of frogs that are widely available
here in Southern Louisiana are Pigfrogs and Bullfrogs.
Frogs (Rana catesbeiana) are
generally 3-7" long, They are olive to grayish-green to
dark brown, with numerous dark spots and distinct band on thighs, large
eardrums, and fully webbed hind feet their belly cream coloerd, often with heavy
These frogs emit a short, explosive pig like grunt, from which it gets
its common name. These frogs are nocturnal. The Pig Frog
spends most of its time floating among water hyacinth, cattails, or
emergent sedges. It is territorial
and feeds primarily on crawfish, but eats minnows, snakes, and smaller
North American Bullfrog (Rana grylio) is the largest
frog in North America. they are commonly 5-15 inches long. The
adult females average 10.7 inches and the males 9.2 inches. Green
to yellow above with random mottling of darker gray. Large external
eardrum; hind feet fully webbed except for last joint of longest toe.
Belly cream to white, may be mottled with gray. These frogs are
nocturnal. Less aquatic than the Pig Frog, it is usually found on
the bank at water's edge. They prefers ponds, lakes, and slow-moving
streams large enough to avoid crowding and with sufficient vegetation to
provide easy cover. Large bullfrogs have been known to catch and
swallow small birds and young snakes; their usual diet includes insects,
crawfish, other frogs, and minnows.
Frogs are in season in Southern Louisiana ever
month except April and May. Now is a great time to get out and do
it. It is not unusual to get 25 - 50 frogs in a few hours of frogging and
it is fun. Everyone can do it kids and adults, girls and boys. Some
people like to catch the frogs by hand. That's the way I like to do it,
other people use a paddle to stun the frog and then just pick him from the
We have a person laying low on the front side
of the boat, a person with a bright searchlight. The person driving the
boat slowly glides up to the frog while the light person holds the light on the
frog. The "catcher" lays very still and when the frog is less
than a foot a way he/she reaches out with the speed of a cobra and grabs the
frog. Many are caught and many get away. Lot's of laughter and
screaming. You hear... "you missed another
one"... "he's in the boat, don't
let him get away"... "about
six of them just got out of the sack, get them"!!!
What a way to spend a hot summer night, it
really is a blast. You will see and hear hundreds of frogs and see (don't
catch) probably 50 alligators. The fun does not stop when the trip is over.
These frogs are some of the best eating any where.
Frog Legs Recipe
|Fried Frog Legs is a
very popular dish in South Louisiana. Oh I know "those poor little
frogs", well.... "those poor little shrimp!" I've heard
people say " try them, they taste like chicken", hey, they
taste like frog legs to me.... whatever... This is a "tight
crust" recipe so greasiness is at a minimum! This recipe will fry
about 2 doz. small Frog Legs. Frog Leg preparation: Wash the legs,
season them and keep them cool. That's it.
2/3 cup of milk
1 tbs. Creole Seasoning (your choice)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp. hot sauce
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
Salt and fresh ground black pepper.
Put legs in wet mix.
Mix it all up and marinade it for 30 or more minutes in the ice box.
2 cups corn flour (see
note 1) or fish fry, or just plain flour.
3/4 cup cornstarch (makes it stick better)
2 Tbs. Creole Seasoning
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
1/2 tsp. Cayenne
1 tsp lemon and pepper seasoning
Don't hesitate to
adjust any of the above to your liking...
Cooking: Dredge the
legs in the dry mix and let sit a minute or so moving them around just a
little. Using a paper bag works good for this too. Just drop the legs in
and shake it up a few times. Use peanut oil, about 2" in the pan
depending upon the pan depth. Heat to 365ºF (hot oil will burn you
badly, be careful). Place legs in the oil a few at a time leaving at
least a 1/2" space between pieces. Why? If you pack the pan with
too much meat the oil cools too much and that equals soggy legs (not
good). Stir them around every 10 seconds or so.
them about 5 minutes. I watch the bubbling to judge the doneness, I
don't time it. Let them fry until they bubble lightly. If they quit
bubbling completely they're overcooked. With practice you can get each
piece done perfectly. You cannot tell how done the legs are by the outer
color, it's all in the bubbles!
Remove the legs and
place on paper towels. Move them around so the grease is soaked up.
Taste one once they're cooled a little to see if you need to add any
seasoning. Transfer them to another pan with more paper towels and cover
with paper towels.
Let the oil come back
to 350ºF for the next batch! Remember, the oil cools as you cook. If
you don't have a frying thermometer get one, guessing just don't get it!
If the oil gets too hot turn the fire off, or lower, and let it cool to
the right temperature. If the oil smokes you've probably ruined it. A
thermometer prevents all of this trouble.
Note 1: I am
lucky enough to be able to get corn flour from a wholesale distributor.
A 20lb. sack costs about $5.00. You can also use a commercially sold
fish fry mix which uses the same basic ingredients. It's mostly corn
flour (read the ingredients), and comes seasoned and unseasoned. You can
also mix corn meal and flour and that works okay too. Corn meal is
coarser than corn flour, hence the name, "corn flour". Corn
flour is pulverized corn meal.
Note 2: To keep
the food warm put the oven on 200°F (or as low as it will go) and let
it warm up about 15 minutes. Cover the legs with paper towels (not
plastic wrap) or loosely with foil, turn the oven off, and put the pan
in the oven. If you seal the pan with plastic wrap or foil the legs will
become soggy. If you leave the oven on they will dry out too much. This
only works for so long. After a few re-heats the legs will dry out
Warning: This is
nothin' but good!
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