Creole-Style Bean Soup

You had me at ‘okra’. I love okra. Grilled, fried, sauteed, roasted… or tossed into this Creole-style bean soup. The okra helps thicken up the broth and adds such a great flavor. All the flavors of a gumbo, along with some hearty beans to boot. Easy to make and fantastic on a cold day.
Creole-Style Bean SoupI don’t add the shrimp to the entire pot of soup if I’m not going to eat the entire batch at once. Reheated shrimp are not my favorite thing. They get too tough. Instead, I transfer some of the soup (just enough for dinner) to a separate pot and then add the shrimp. It’s a bit more trouble but I think it’s worth it. I could leave out the shrimp entirely and still have a great soup, but it wouldn’t be the same, that’s for sure.

Also try my smoked turkey and file gumbo pie.

Creole-Style Bean Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 3 (15 ounce) cans beans, rinsed and drained (I used kidney, red and cannellini)
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 14 ounces smoked sausage, sliced thin, browned first if desired
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • A few shakes of hot sauce
  • A few pinches of dried red pepper flake
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 pound frozen sliced okra
  • 1 cup small medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients except the okra and shrimp into a large pot or Dutch oven.
  2. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and let simmer for 45 minutes.
  3. Add the okra and shrimp.
  4. Return to a boil and boil for 5 minutes then reduce again to a simmer and simmer until the shrimp are done.

Crab-Stuffed Shrimp

It was one of those days where I wanted to seriously up my game. I figured (correctly) that a stop at our local fish mongers, Caplinger’s, would inspire me even more. And so I set off to make crab-stuffed shrimp on the grill. Large shrimp are butterflied, the meat separated from the shells but still connected, and then stuffed with an absolutely delightful mixture of crab and seasonings that reminds me very much of crab cake. I cooked the shrimp over charcoal in a cast-iron skillet, giving the shrimp a light smoky flavor. The end result was out-of-this-world delicious.
For appetizer-sized crab-stuffed shrimp use smaller shrimp, like the 16 count shrimp I used. For main dishes, get some 6-8 count shrimp. The larger the shrimp the easier they are to butterfly and the easier it is to separate the meat from the shell, which is definitely the most difficult part of making these shrimp. The rest is easy peasy.

As I sit here and remember just how fantastic the crab stuffing was in these shrimp, I recall back to the best crabcakes I’ve ever had, at Timbuktu’s in Hanover, Maryland. Their crabcakes have the largest and most delicious chunks of crab in them… mmmmmm….

Also try my delicious Buffa-Que shrimp.

Crab-Stuffed Shrimp
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound jumbo (6-8 count) shrimp (I used smaller, 16 count shrimp)
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter (plus more for the skillet)
  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 sleeves Ritz crackers, crumbled
  • 2 slices white bread, crusts removed, cubed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • Fresh parsley, chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, plus more if needed
  • 1/2 pound lump crab
  • 1 lemon,halved
Instructions
  1. Fire up your grill for two zone (direct and indirect cooking). Alternatively, you can cook these shrimp in the oven at 350 F.
  2. Cut a slit down the backs of the shrimp. Do not cut all the way thru.
  3. Butterfly the shrimp and remove the vein.
  4. Separate the shell from the meat but do not remove it. The shell will still be attached at the tail, but the meat will not be attached to the shell.
  5. Lightly butter a 7" cast iron skillet. Add the shrimp, butterflied side up.
  6. Melt 1/2 pound of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  7. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes.
  8. Reduce the heat to low and add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat.
  9. Crumble the crackers into a large bowl. Add the bread, Old Bay seasoning, parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.
  10. Add most of the melted butter. Do not add any of the onion or garlic, you just want to add the liquid.
  11. Mix and add the mayonnaise. Try to squeeze the mixture together. If it holds together, it's ready. If it's too dry add more of the melted butter and a little bit of mayonnaise and mix and try again. Keep adding more butter/mayonnaise until the mixture holds together.
  12. Lightly chop the crab and fold into the cracker mixture.
  13. Working in batches, squeeze a tablespoon or two of the stuffing into a small log shape and place inside the butterflied shrimp. Don't be shy with the stuffing, you'll have plenty.
  14. Place over indirect heat or in the oven and cook 20 minutes or until the shrimp is done. The shrimp will be pink in color on the outside and the flesh is opaque. If cooking on the grill rotate your skillet once to achieve consistent cooking.
  15. Place the lemon halves over direct heat on the grill and grill until seared. If cooking in the oven, just use the halves as is - don't cook them.
  16. Remove skillet and serve with lemon wedges.

Cajun Shrimp-Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Wow, talk about amazingly good. The heck with the main dish, just load me up on some of these Cajun shrimp-stuffed poblano peppers. A slight kick of heat, perfect shrimp and creamy melted cheese. What’s not to love?
cajun-shrimp-stuffed-pobalno-peppersYou could use green bell peppers instead, if you want. I love poblanos because they are a little spicier than a bell pepper without just completely drowning out a dish in heat.

For extra kick, substitute shredded pepper jack cheese for the feta and mozzarella and add a few diced roasted jalapenos into the shrimp mixture. That’ll definitely liven up the party.

Also try my Cajun stuffed chicken breast and my bacon cheese-stuffed peppers!

Cajun Shrimp-Stuffed Poblano Peppers
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 2 large poblano peppers
  • 1/2 pound shrimp, raw or pre-cooked, 24-30 count, peeled, deveined
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil (if you are using raw shrimp)
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  • 1/4 cup ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil, crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • Cilantro, chopped, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Note: You can use pre-cooked shrimp if you desire. Just toss the shrimp with the Cajun seasoning and do not cook.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  3. Cut the peppers in half lengthwise. Remove any stems or seeds.
  4. If using cooked shrimp, toss the shrimp with the Cajun seasoning in a large bowl.
  5. If using raw shrimp, heat the oil over medium-high heat in a skillet. Add the shrimp, sprinkle with the seasoning, and cook, turning, until done, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  6. Add the cheeses, basil and hot sauce to the shrimp Stir.
  7. Transfer shrimp mixture to the poblanos and place on a baking dish.
  8. Place in oven and bake 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the peppers are softened.
  9. Serve garnished with chopped cilantro.

Cedar-Planked Shrimp and Grits

Anita and I both agreed that these cedar-planked shrimp and grits were truly something special. The shrimp had a nice little spiciness to them. The grits had a fantastic creamy cheesiness to them. And the sauce had that wonderful (but light) Worcestershire sauce-flavored creaminess. Any one of the star components would be absolutely fantastic on it’s own, but together, they made for the perfect dinner.
Cedar-Planked Shrimp and GritsThe shrimp do not take long to cook on the cedar plank, so keep an eye on them and don’t over cook them. If you don’t have a cedar plank you can cook the shrimp directly on the grill, or skewer them first.

I can’t recommend the grits and sauce enough, though I’d eat the shrimp off the grill by themselves any day of the week.

Cooking on cedar planks can really change the ordinary into something special, which is why I do it often. Check out my other cedar plank recipes: creamy mashed potatoes, Cajun mashed potatoes, Twinkies, beef sliders, chorizo portabellos, hot dogs, sausage sandwiches and spicy grilled shrimp.

Cedar-Planked Shrimp and Grits
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
For the shrimp
  • 1 cedar grilling plank
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter,
  • 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons your favorite BBQ sauce
  • 1 pound large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
For the grits
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup quick-cooking grits
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 1/2 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
For the sauce
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 clove garlic, mined
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
Instructions
For the shrimp
  1. Soak plank in water for at least an hour.
  2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan.
  3. Stir in the Creole seasoning and BBQ sauce.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  5. Add the shrimp and toss to coat.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  7. Fire up your grill for direct and indirect cooking.
  8. Place the plank over direct heat until it starts to smoke and char. Remove to indirect heat.
  9. Remove the shrimp from the container. Shake off any excess marinade and add to the plank.
  10. Cook until the shrimp are pink and done, 10-15 minutes.
For the grits
  1. Bring the broth and butter to a boil in a medium saucepan.
  2. Slowly whisk in the grits.
  3. Cook for 5 minutes, whisking constantly.
  4. Stir in the tomato paste, heavy cream, and the cheese.
  5. Keep stirring 2-3 minutes or until the grits are creamy. If they get too thick add more broth or cream.
  6. Remove from heat.
For the sauce
  1. Melt butter in a large skillet.
  2. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds.
  3. Whisk in the flour and continue whisking until the mixture is thick and has turned light tan in color, about 10 minutes.
  4. Slowly whisk in the chicken stock and cream. Cook for 2 more minutes.
  5. Add the Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. Stir. Remove from heat.
Serving
  1. Serve the shrimp over the grits with plenty of sauce.

Smoked Shrimp Cobb Salad

Farm-fresh vegetables and fruits scream Cobb salad to me. Add a few smoked shrimp and a great (spicy!) creamy dressing and I’m a happy guy. Any toppings will do, and the more variety, the better.

The spicy shrimp and cool, but still spicy dressing really go well with the coolness of the vegetables and the pop of the cherry tomatoes. There’s no point in having a boring salad.
Smoked Shrimp Cobb SaladI think artichoke hearts (and hearts of palm for that matter) should be a required ingredient in every Cobb salad. And shrimp. The shrimp don’t have to be smoked, of course, but that smoky flavor really changes up a salad.

My favorite salads when I eat out are the Buffalo chicken salad at Max and Erma’s and the tossed Cobb at The Ram, topped with Buffalo chicken. Yes, I like spicy salads.

Also try my grilled shrimp Cobb salad.

Smoked Shrimp Cobb Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Main or Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
Your favorite Cobb salad ingredients, I used
  • Green leaf lettuce
  • Chilled canned small artichoke hearts, drained, chopped
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Chopped radishes
  • Boiled eggs, halved
  • Diced avocado
Instructions
  1. Arrange ingredients on a platter and serve.

Bayou Fried Shrimp

These Bayou fried shrimp are absolutely incredible. I’m quite sure they are the best shrimp I’ve ever made or had. The coating is nice and light, with just a bit of crunch, and a bit of a spicy kick. The shrimp are tender, moist, and cooked perfectly. They are the perfect appetizer, but would be even more insanely good on a shrimp po boy sandwich. I served them up with Frog Bone Bayou Cajun cocktail and St. Elmo’s Spicy cocktail sauces.
Bayou Fried ShrimpThe marinade and coating mixture I used on this Bayou fried shrimp would also be fantastic on other fried seafood, from oysters to fish. It’s really great stuff.

Also try my copycat of Applebee’s Sriracha shrimp, coconut fried shrimp, southern fried shrimp, and my copycat of Bonefish Grill’s Bang Bang shrimp. Did I mention how much I love fried shrimp?

Bayou Fried Shrimp
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 pounds
 
Ingredients
  • 3 pounds large raw shrimp, shelled, deveined. Leave the tails on if desired, but remove the tails if using for po boys.
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • 1 (10 ounce) package Tony Cachere's Seasoned fish fry mix, or substitute 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  • Vegetable oil
Instructions
  1. Place shrimp into a resealable container or baggie.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together the buttermilk, egg, mustard and 1 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning.
  3. Pour mixture in with the shrimp, seal, and shake gently to coat.
  4. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Whisk together the fish fry mix and remaining Cajun seasoning.
  6. Heat 3" of oil in a Dutch oven to 325 F.
  7. Working in batches, remove shrimp from container. Shake off excess marinade then transfer to the fry mix. Roll and coat. Shake off an excess coating and place in hot oil.
  8. Fry shrimp 1 1/2 minutes per side then transfer to a wire rack or paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool.
  9. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce or on a po boy.

Slow Cooker Party Shrimp

I love shrimp. Boiled peel-and-eat shrimp loaded with Old Bay flavor are my favorite. All I need is a bit of spicy cocktail sauce and I’m ready to go. I thought I’d try something new this time instead of boiling shrimp in spices. I thought I’d try cooking the shrimp in a slow cooker. And wow! Perfectly cooked shrimp, tender and moist, about as hassle-free as you can possibly get. This is absolutely the easiest way to cook up a big batch of shrimp for a party.

Slow Cooker Party ShrimpYou can cook the shrimp ahead of time and chill them to serve them cold, or let your guests grab the shrimp right out of the slow cooker. Well, using tongs would probably be a good idea.

I used 20-24 count wild caught Gulf shrimp for this dish. I prefer Gulf shrimp, and I prefer wild and not farm-raised. I think the taste of Gulf shrimp that have been living in the wilds cannot be beat. That’s why I also use them in my shrimpin’ dippin’ broth.

Also make a batch of my refried bean dip in your slow cooker. It’s another great party dish.

Slow Cooker Party Shrimp
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 envelope crab boil spices (or use 2 tablespoons of Old Bay per pound of shrimp)
  • 1 (12 ounce) can beer
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 4 pounds large shrimp, frozen
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients into a slow cooker.
  2. Add enough water to cover the shrimp.
  3. Cook on high for 2 hours or until the shrimp are pink and done.
  4. Serve hot, warm or cold with cocktail sauce.

Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp on the Char-Broil Big Easy

I really should’ve listened to my inner voice. You know the one. The one that says “You should make a double batch of these bacon-wrapped shrimp”. But I didn’t listen. I fired up my Char-Broil Big Easy and made just one batch. One little ole batch. I knew as soon as the bacon started cooking that I was in a for a treat. In almost no time I was enjoying hot, tender, moist shrimp wrapped in tasty bacon, seasoned with my favorite Fire-Eater rub, dipped in a cool remoulade sauce. You can’t beat it.
Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp on the Char-Broil Big EasyDarn near anything wrapped in bacon and cooked on the Char-Broil Big Easy is good. Try my bacon-wrapped appetizer sausages. Or bacon-wrapped Brussels sprouts. And of course, bacon-wrapped tater tots.

Love your Big Easy as much I love mine? Check out my Big Easy Add-Ons page and my free Big Easy eCookbook!

Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp on the Char-Broil Big Easy
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • Thin-sliced bacon (1 slice for every 3 shrimp)
  • Large shrimp, shelled and deveined (I was able to cook 12 24-30 count shrimp at a time in the bottom of the Big Easy basket)
  • Your favorite seasoning (I used our Fire-Eater Rub)
  • Remoulade sauce, for dipping (try our spicy Creole remoulade)
Instructions
  1. Stick the bacon into the freezer for 15 minutes to make it easier to slice.
  2. Fire up your Big Easy.
  3. Slice the bacon into thirds and wrap around the shrimp.
  4. Sprinkle the shrimp with the seasoning and place into the Big Easy basket.
  5. Cook in the Big Easy for 20 minutes for large shrimp. Do not overcook or the shrimp will get tough.
  6. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes to help crisp up the bacon.
  7. Serve with remoulade sauce for dipping.