I know there are a few folks out there who are going to more than enjoy this recipe. It’s got punch, so if you like punch, it’s for you. It’s a combination of cayenne pepper, hot sauce, lemon juice and India pale ale – all smothering some delicious and tender shrimp. When that’s combined with some toasted French bread, you know there’s a party going on.
Before I continue with this post, I’d like to thank Laura for, once again, coming to the rescue during the final stretch of the recipe preparation and photography. As I was taking pictures of what I had made, I quickly realized that I was running out of ideas for how to present this dish. I snapped a few shots and called it a night. I usually do these things during the evening and then write the post the next day. I wasn’t happy with my photography, but after my lady showed up in the kitchen and helped out, things took a turn for the better. She added some of the beer I used to the “set” and then made a few other changes. Before I knew it, the pictures of the dish started looking much more like something someone might arrange on their own table.
To be honest, I’m more of the make it and eat it type of a person. She’s got the creative flair. I can even take care of a lot of the photography, but when it comes to food styling, I fall short. It’s not in my blood. She’s got it though and I’m lucky to be so close to such talent.
This is one of those New Orleans recipes that you might find down on a bayou. Like I mentioned in the opening of this post, it’s got some zing. There’s lots of garlic and spices and some herbs to round things out. It’s meant to be a fun dish. When finished, you can toast up some French bread and dip it in the broth that comes with the shrimp. You can even make little shrimp sandwiches with the bread, or put the shrimp in wraps. That’s what we plan to do with the leftovers. Just to keep things interesting.
This dish only takes a few minutes to prepare. Shrimp cooks fast and there’s nothing to bake or roast. Even the prep is easy, so I would seriously consider this recipe for summertime barbecues or any time you want somethings that’s tasty and fast. But remember, it’s got garlic. You have to like garlic if you’re going to like this recipe.
I’d like to thank Curtis Stone and his cookbook called What’s For Dinner? for this recipe. He calls it New Orleans “Barbecued” Shrimp with Amber Ale, but after the changes I made, I felt my title was more appropriate.
Makes: 4 Servings
2 Pounds Frozen Large Shrimp, Peeled and Cleaned
4 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
8 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1/4 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
Regular Table Salt
Ground Black Pepper
1/2 Cup India Pale Ale
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce (Tabasco)
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
3 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
1 Teaspoon Dried Thyme
1/2 Teaspoon Dried and Crumbled Rosemary
8 Slices of French Bread, Toasted
I believe you can use any type of ale for this recipe. After all the other ingredients are included, it’s impossible to taste what type of beer has been included. I would, however, caution you to stay towards the richer beers and not something light and cheap. You’re likely to miss out on something good if you go light.
Thaw & Strain the Shrimp
Add the frozen shrimp to a large bowl and then fill the bowl with water that’s room temperature. Let the shrimp soak for about 10 minutes to thaw them out. Then, pour them into a colander and shake them up a bit. Try to get the shrimp as dry as possible.
Add Garlic & Shrimp to Skillet
Warm a large skillet over medium-high heat. I used my 12″ Lodge cast iron skillet for this because that’s the biggest one I have. Once the pan is hot, add the 4 tablespoons of olive oil and the minced garlic. Then, add the cayenne pepper and stir up a bit.
The goal with this step is to take some of the edge off the garlic by cooking it for about a minute or so. You don’t want to go so far as to actually brown the garlic because that’ll add a bitter taste to it. One minute is fine for this.
Next, add 1 teaspoon of regular table salt and 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper. Mix everything in the pan a bit and then pour in the shrimp. Stir the shrimp well for about 1 minute until it’s entirely covered with the oil.
After that, add the 1/2 cup of ale, the 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, the 1 tablespoon of hot sauce and the 1 tablespoon of worcestershire sauce. Cook for another 2 minutes while stirring well.
Add Remaining Herbs & Simmer
Add in the finely chopped parsley, the 1 teaspoon oregano, the 1 teaspoon thyme and the 1/2 teaspoon rosemary. Cook, while stirring, for another 1 minute. When the shrimp is visibly cooked through, remove the skillet from heat.
Toast French Bread & Serve
After the shrimp is finished, go ahead and toast up the 8 slices of French bread. I have to warn you here – the French bread is awesome when it’s dipped in the broth, so be sure to include a good amount of broth in each bowl. When the bread is ready, place 2 slices at the side of each bowl and add the shrimp and broth.
The Final Dish
Whenever I get to this part of the post, for some reason, I always think back to the dish. I go back and forth in my mind in an attempt to think of what was best about it. In this case, while the shrimp was spicy and delicious, I have to go with the bread and broth. The bread soaks that broth up and it turns something regular into something garlicky and wonderful. The moral of this story is: don’t forget the bread.
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