Tuesday, April 26, 2016

New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp

I have to admit, being a Missouri girl, I have certain expectations when I see the word "BBQ".  Here in the Midwest, "Kansas City Style" is king--meaning slow smoked and then glazed in a thick, sticky, sweet and spicy tomato-and-molasses based sauce.  So imagine my surprise the first time I ordered BBQ shrimp in New Orleans, and got what looked like a giant bowl of shrimp scampi.

Didn't taste like shrimp scampi though.

In NOLA, "BBQ Shrimp" is typically served as an appetizer--which makes sense, given that it's jumbo shrimp swimming in a Lake Pontchartrain of orange butter (and who wants to hog a giant bowl of butter?).  This butter has been loaded down with garlic, Worcestershire, paprika, cayenne, green onions...but it's still a SEA OF BUTTER.  And what better to serve with a metric ton of butter?  FRENCH BREAD TO SOAK THAT STUFF UP.  Can't waste delicious butter, son!

I think the thing I like most about this recipe is that it is actually a SUPER fast meal to make. I mean, shrimp cook fast.  The most intensive part of this recipe is making the BBQ butter, and you can do that the night before if you like.  If you make the butter ahead of time, this dish can be ready to serve in under 15 minutes.  It feels soooooo fancy...but it's so easy!

1 lb Gulf jumbo shrimp (21-30 ct), peeled (tails on is okay, though if you remove them it's easier to eat with a fork--this dish can be messy if you eat with your hands)
1 cup BBQ butter: (mix the following ingredients together ahead of time and then let cool in the fridge)

  • 1 cup spreadable butter (if you use regular butter, you'll need to soften it to room temp so you can blend everything into it)
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1/8 cup minced garlic
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce 
  • 1 tsp Cajun Power garlic sauce
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup diced green onion
1/2 cup dry white wine
juice of 1/2 lemon
Sliced French Bread for dipping

Make BBQ Butter ahead of time and put in fridge until you're ready for it.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet, then add the shrimp, cooking on one side for about 1-2 minutes.
Then flip, add the white wine, lemon, and green onions, and reduce heat to medium.  Cook until the wine has reduced by half.  Then add the BBQ butter and reduce heat to low, stirring until the butter is fully melted, the sauce is warm, and the shrimp are cooked through.

Serve hot with the French bread for dipping, garnish with extra green onions.

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