This dish has nothing to do with a barbecue pit or barbecuing. Why is it called "barbecued" shrimp? Beats the hell out of me. If you're really curious, ask someone at Pascal's Manale Restaurant on Napoleon Avenue in New Orleans; it's where the dish was created. Me, I don't care. This dish is so good you can call it whatever you want. Just, um, don't have it every day. You'll know why immediately when you see the first ingredient listed:
[This feeds 8-10 people, BTW ... cut it in half if you need to.]
- 2 pounds butter (Yes, you read right. Two pounds. Eight sticks. Don't whine. DO NOT use margarine! Real butter only.)
- 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning, to taste; OR
- 2 - 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper and 3 - 4 teaspoons black pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary leaves
- 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 6 ounces good beer (microbrewery is preferable to mainstream swill)
- 5 - 10 cloves garlic, finely minced (or as much as you like)
- 1 medium onion, very finely minced
- 3 ribs celery, very finely minced
- 3 - 4 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 2 teaspoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- 4 pounds shrimp, heads and shells on
Melt a stick of the butter in a skillet. Saute the garlic, onions, celery, parsley, rosemary and seasoning blend for about 2 - 3 minutes.
Melt the rest of the butter. Add the beer (drink the rest of the bottle). Add the sauteed stuff, Worcestershire and lemon juice.
Drown the shrimp in the seasoned butter, using as many baking dishes as you need. Make sure the shrimp are more or less submerged. If they're not ... melt more butter and add to the sauce. (Aah, what the hell ... what's another stick or two when you're already up to these butterfat levels?) Bake in a 350 degree oven until the shrimp turn pink, about 15 minutes.
Serve in big bowls. Put in a handful of shrimp and ladle lots of the spicy butter sauce over it. Roll up your sleeves and wear a bib (DO NOT wear nice clothes when eating this!) Serve with plenty of French bread to sop up da sauce!
Try to avoid going to have your cholesterol and triglycerides taken for a few weeks afterward. Remember that this is a special treat. Don't eat this all the time if you want to live. But hey, every now and again ... LIVE!
As with lots of New Orleans cooking, there are a zillion ways to do this. Here are some other BBQ shrimp recipes provided by some of the kind folks on the old NEW-ORLEANS mailing list:
From: Marc LoCascio <email@example.com>
i've never had BBQ Shrimp at a Brennan's restaraunt, but i assume it's the same idea as BBQ Shrimp every where else in New Orleans. i have two recipes. i'm not sure where the first one's from, but the second is from "Recipes and Reminiscences of New Orleans" (vol 1, Ursuline Academy Parents' Club, 1971). i'll list both sets of ingredients, but the cooking instructions are the same for either:
BBQ Shrimp #1:
- 8-10 lbs shrimp
- 1 lb butter
- 1 lb margarine
- 6 oz Worcestershire sauce
- 8 tbs black pepper
- 1 teaspoon rosemary
- 4 lemons (sliced)
- 1 teaspoon Tabasco
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 2-4 cloves garlic
BBQ Shrimp #2:
"Wash shrimp. Spread out in shallow pan. Combine ingredients in sauce pan over low heat and pour over shrimp. Refrigerate. Baste and turn shrimp every 30 minutes while refrigerated for several hours. Bake at 300 degree for 30 minutes, turning shrimp at 10 minute intervals. Serve in soup bowl with French bread to dip in sauce."
- 8 lbs whole shrimp
- 1/2 lb butter
- 1 cup olive oil
- 8 once chili sauce
- 3 tbs Worcestershire sauce
- 2 lemons, sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 3 tbs lemon juice
- 1 tbs parsley
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 2 teaspoons red pepper
- 1 teaspoon Tabasco
- 3 tbs liquid smoke
- salt and pepper to taste
when i cook it, i mix and match ingredients and add seasoning of my own, but i'd pretty much start with the second version. i did mention that those Ursuline Parents' Club cookbooks (vols 1 and 2) are great, and every fan of N.O. cooking should have them, right? ;-)
BTW, there's also a recipe for BBQ Shrimp in Paul Prudhomme's first cookbook, but the second one above is close to definitive, IM(NS)HO.
bar-b-cued shrimp #3
in a saucepan melt butter and margerine. add worcestershire, pepper, rosemary, lemon slices, tabasco, salt, garlic and mix thoroughly. divide shrimp between two large shallow pans and pour heated sauce over each. Stir well. Cook in a 400 degree oven about 15-20 minutes, turning once. Shells should be pink, the meat white and not translucent.
- 8-10 pounds jumbo shrimp, heads and shells on (20 shrimp/pound)
- 1 pound butter
- 1 teaspoon ground rosemary
- 1 pound margerine
- 4 lemons sliced
- 6 oz. Lea and Perrins 1 teaspoon tabasco
- 8 tablespoons finely ground black pepper
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 2-4 cloves garlic (optional, but not with me)
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Chuck Taggart (e-mail chuck)