Being from Louisiana originally, I grew strong teeth and bones on all sorts of great Cajun food. My mother would cook up red beads and rice, gumbo, and etouffe's on a regular basis. She would even pester me to go out and catch her a big snapping turtle to make a gumbo or soup out of.
Since moving from her home and into central Indiana the authentic Cajun meals have been pretty slim. Lucky for me a family by the name of LaBlanc decided to open Mudbugs Cajun Café within a couple miles of my house. They make the best red beans and rice I have had in years. Literally, I was dancing in my seat the first time I had it. My wife and kids just about laughed themselves out of their seats watching me eat. The gumbo, etouffee, Po'boy's, Jambalaya and catfish are fantastic. All the items on the menu are fantastic and authentic Cajun.
Mudbugs is located in the heart of the Art and Design district in Carmel (Indiana). They have specials going on all the time and their lunch specials can't be beat. Where they really shine is when they have their crawfish boils and Alligator nights. Fresh Crawfish are flown up and batch after batch is cooked up. The Alligator Po'boy nights are a major deal and the restaurant is packed all night long with a continual dose of Swamp People and fresh alligator throughout the evening.
I have had the pleasure of getting to know Roy LaBlanc this past year. He and Cecil are good friends and Roy has been a big help with the Annual Crawdad RoundUp at FlyMasters of Indianapolis. Unfortunately, Roy has not been able to attend but he has always let us borrow a pot and/or cooking equipment for the event. I even had the pleasure of getting out fishing with Cecil and Roy this past summer. We floated the Tippie and had a blast catching Smallies, Largemouth Bass, panfish and Roy even brought in a nice catfish (as it should be).
You can get the full 411 on Mudbugs website, including a listing of their menu. You should read the article done by the Indianapolis Business Journal as well. There is a nice video of Roy, his wife Belinda and their daughter Kelly all talking about how Mudbugs got started. To keep up with the latest happenings at Mudbugs, and you should, you can sign up for their newsletter. If Facebook is what you are into you can friend them there. they always post what is happening at the restaurant.
Do yourself a favor and head out to Mudbugs soon. Break away from the normal Midwest fare and try something new. But be careful… you might find yourself acquiring a French twang when you talk.