What is the difference between Creole and Cajun food?

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What is the difference between Creole and Cajun food?

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Cajuns where a subset of Creole, but modern times, Cajun are the White southerns, Creole are the blacks, mixed in New Orleans/north.

They use the same spices, but Creole food usually is tomato based or has tomatoes and Cajun does not. There is more too it, but that is the easy line.

From a cajun currently living in New Orleans: cajun food is creole food with less Spanish influence, and more an emphasis on the African American slaves’ diets and the settlement of poor French acadiens in southern Louisiana.

Lots of rich, saucy (often tomato based) dishes available at any restaurant in the city.

Lots of gumbo and boudin and rice & gravy at your grandma’s house in Vermilion Parish.

Cajun is Acadian, ie, displaced French from Nova Scotia, Canada.

Creole is derived from Caribbean areas.

“Creole” means, roughly, “born in the colony”. So languages, people, and customs that developed in new world colonies are in technical terms, “creoles”. Which has nothing to do with Louisiana Creole cuisine.

When Louisiana was settled by French and Spanish citizens, there was some kerfluffle over the rights of their descendants. They were termed “Creoles” as a legal term, giving them the legal rights of their ancestral nations. In Louisiana, MOSTLY, Creole refers to the people and culture of the early settlers. They’re mostly the upper class plantation society.

The Cajuns were Acadian refugees from Canada, expelled by the British. They traveled the whole east coast of America before the Creoles welcomed them. They settled in the areas not already controlled by plantations, so marshes and swamps.

TL;DR: Creole food is haute cuisine, plantation and restaurant cooking. Cajun food is the cuisine of a people doing their (amazing) best with what they could grow or catch. Similar to the haute cuisine vs peasant food of the French.

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