Friday, August 1, 2008

New Orleans BBQ shrimp

This shrimp recipe is oddly named since it includes nothing resembling bbq sauce. As a matter of fact I have only actually cooked it on a bbq grill once. So I don't know where the name comes from but it sure doesn't matter because it's freakin delicious.

We first had it at place called Oddfellows in Hoboken, NJ. Perfect for a quick happy hour meal on a weeknight after a crappy day at work. We always chased it with a bottle of Abita Purple Haze (try it - you must). Strangely we did not eat this shrimp dish when we were actually in New Orleans so I cannot confirm it's authenticity. Rachel??

So this recipe also calls for Abita beer but that can be hard to find (Whole Foods carries it but I think it's a regional thing) so just use whatever good beer you have on hand and a PBR would certainly do in a pinch. Though I definitely would not use any of those fruity beers for this because I doubt it would work well here.

Here's what you'll need:
1 lb. raw shrimp with tails on (we buy the bag of frozen shrimp from Trader Joe's)
3 tbls unsalted butter
1 tbls olive oil
½ onion or 1 shallot chopped finely
2 Cloves Garlic minced
2 tbls Worcestershire Sauce1 half Bottle Abita Beer - Amber or TurboDog (or whatever else you have)Juice of one lemon
dash of cayenne
1 tbls old bay seasoning (or other ground dry crab boil seasoning)salt

Thaw the shrimp if they are frozen. Leave the tails on.

Preheat your broiler or grill on the high setting (~500°)

Place a large and deep (also broiler or grill safe) skillet over medium/high heat. Add the olive oil.
Add the chopped onion or shallot to the hot oil and sautee until transulucent
Add the minced garlic. Cook until fragrant.

Add the butter to the mixture and cook until it is melted. Stir in the worcestershire, crab seasoning, cayenne. Stir to incorporate.

Add the entire bottle or can of beer. Cook until the foam disappears. Add the lemon juice, stir to incooperate and remove the mixture from the heat.

Pat the shrimp dry to remove any excess moisture. Add the raw shrimp to the sauce (you may need to transfer the mixture into a broiler or grill safe pan at this point). Stir to coat the shrimp with the sauce and arrange them in a single layer in the pan.

Place the pan of shrimp into the oven or into a covered bbq grill. Cook for 5 minutes (watch these closely so that they do not get over cooked). Flip the shrimp to cook on the other side. Remove from heat when the shrimp are just cooked (they will be opaque and pink).

Serve with crusty pieces of baguette and grilled veggies (we like asparagus or zucchini).

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