Any chef worth his salt will tell you ingredients are best when they are fresh – and shrimp don’t get any fresher than when they’re bought straight from fishermen themselves at the dock.
Buyers visiting the boats docked on the Atchafalaya River in Morgan City and Berwick can buy by the pound. Bring your own ice chest to transport them home.
With Louisiana’s fall shrimp seasons opening this month (conveniently the season will be open during the Louisiana Shrimp & Petroleum Festival over Labor Day weekend) it’s time to start thinking about recipes for those fantastic Gulf shrimp.
Our friends at Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning know a thing or two about cooking and they’ve offered up a few ideas for shrimp dishes:
Cajun Shrimp Pastalaya
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 pound Andouille sausage, diced
1/2 cup onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup red & yellow bell peppers, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes, not drained
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil
2 teaspoons Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning, or to taste
1 tablespoon butter
1 green onion, sliced
Salt, to taste
2 cups dry medium pasta shells, cooked
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Place shrimp in the pot and sprinkle with Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning. Cook them about 5 minutes or until pink, then remove them and set aside. Add the sausage and brown it on all sides and then remove it from pot and set aside. Add the onion and bell peppers and cook for about 5 minutes, or until tender and wilted. Add the minced garlic.
Stir in the diced tomatoes and 1/4 cup water; bring to a boil. Once boiling, add the sausage, thyme, basil and Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning; return to boil, then reduce to medium low and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in your cooked shrimp. Cook another 5 minutes to blend in the flavors. Stir in the butter and green onion. Taste, add salt and adjust Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning as needed. Serve over your cooked pasta shells. You can top this with Parmesan cheese!
Shrimp & Okra Gumbo
1 pound fresh sliced okra or 2 boxes of frozen sliced okra
1 tablespoon oil to sauté okra
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups seasoning blend (onions, bell pepper and celery)
2 pounds of fresh shrimp, peeled & deveined
2 – 3 cups water
1 bay leaf
2-3 teaspoons Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning
Pinch or two of salt
Optional – 1 can of Rotel (some add this for a kick)
You can either pan sauté your okra in a little oil or bake it to keep it from making your gumbo slimy and stringy. If you choose to bake your okra… spread them out on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with Pam. Spray them with a little olive oil spray and sprinkle Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning on the okra. Place in a pre-heated oven (350 degrees) for approximately 20 minutes or until turning crisp. If you sauté them… place about a tablespoon of oil in a skillet, put heat to about medium-high. Sauté until stringy texture is gone and okra should be a light brown.
Slowly stir the flour into heated oil in a heavy cast iron skillet. Continue to stir until the roux is dark brown. Add the onions, bell peppers and celery. Cook down until the onions are clear. Add your water, bay leaf, Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning and stir well. Once this is mixed, add your cooked okra. Cook slowly for about 45 minutes on very low, stirring often. Add water if necessary. Add your shrimp and cook another 25 – 30 minutes, still on low. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste. Add a pinch or two of salt if necessary.
Beazell’s Signature BBQ Shrimp
15 large Gulf shrimp
1 stick butter
1/2 ounce white wine
2 tablespoons Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning
In a medium/large skillet, melt butter on medium/high heat. Stir in the white wine and Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning. Once combined (about a minute), add the shrimp, stir and flip shrimp until done (approximately 2-3 minutes). Plate and ENJOY!!