Shrimp Etouffee – A Special Guest Post from Kim at Rustic Garden Bistro

A ripe garden bell pepper from the RGB garden… perfect for dinner.

I am sooo excited to have this blog post today from Kim at Rustic Garden Bistro!  As you might remember from last week, this crazy gal beyond generous person offered to send Meyer Lemons all over the country from her own backyard!  Needless to say, if you announce something like this on Twitter…you give everything away and now have no more Meyer Lemons! 🙁

Those of us who were they very lucky recipients of these precious packages made such things as Preserved Meter Lemons, Meyer Lemon Curd (Smith Bites) and Frozen Meyer Lemon Curd Yogurt (Healthy Green Kitchen).  These are just a few of the delightful things that were made by those of us that Kim shipped lemons to.

Kim is one of the first people that I met when I first started blogging.  We connected before Camp Blogaway (a food blogger’s camp that took place in the San Bernadino Mountains in Southern California last May). She is one of several friends that I have stayed in touch with and I really appreciate her friendship.  We can’t wait until she and Barry come to the East Coast and bring some of their Meyer Lemons, herbs and wine to visit with us!

Speaking of herbs…Kim is offering some of her beautiful homegrown herbs for this special guest post!  She truly is amazing and if you haven’t visited her blog, I hope you will check out her garden and their approach to eating fresh, beautiful and healthy food at Rustic Garden Bistro.  Their recipe for Shrimp Ettouffe looks phenomenal and I can’t wait to try it!!

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Good day, friends! I’m Kim from Rustic Garden Bistro… filling in for Gwen today since she’s busy blogateering at Food Blog South. You may recognize the RGB as the crazy kiddos who recently gifted the blogosphere with boxes and boxes… and boxes of Meyer lemons… because we were growing too many.

Gwen and I formally met at Camp Blogaway last spring. We instantly bonded over a few bottles of wine (snuck into camp by yours truly), traded travel stories and promised to stay in touch. Good news – we’ve been chummy ever since!

If you’re unfamiliar with the RGB, our blog is similar to Bunkycooks: we’re both fans of fresh, local food. We enjoy our communities and travel when we can. And in our worlds, it’s always “5 o-clock somewhere.” On Wednesdays, the RGB showcases garden edibles. Later in the week, we write about what we’re making, which usually highlights the same garden edible. And on Sundays, we send shout-outs to our community (restaurants, bloggers, chefs, etc.).

Today, with the help of Emeril Lagasse, we’re offering our adaptation of a shrimp etouffée; perfectly fitting since its origins are between Bunkycooks in Georgia and the RGB in Southern California. As an aside, it also helped to have some green bell peppers, oregano, parsley and thyme in the garden. Spicy, bold and rustic, I hope it’s one both Bunkycooks readers and RGB readers can enjoy.

A few notes and recommendations: Buy shrimp with the shells attached; save the shells to make stock. At the RGB, we actually reserve in the freezer both shrimp and lobster shells from other recipes. Also, we realize that a true etouffée smothers the shrimp into the stew; but for presentation purposes, we didn’t do that below. We also elected to cut up the shrimp in order to coat it with as much of the seasonings as possible. Bam!

[K]

At the RGB, there’s always something to give away. While we’re almost out of Meyer lemons, we do have plenty of herbs. At the moment, we’re drying oregano, parsley and thyme; would anyone care for some? Tell us: what would you do if you were gifted some jars? Leave us your response, and when Gwen gets back, she’ll pick one of you for me to send a box to!

***THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED***

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Good luck and enjoy the recipe!

 

Shrimp Etouffée

Nutrition content per serving: 278 calories, 22g carbs, 25g protein, 10g fat, 2.5g fiber

Cost per serving: $1.76- $2.27

Source: Emeril Lagasse via The Food Network. Contextually modified as noted by the Rustic Garden Bistro.

Serves 5.


Ingredients:

3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil (recommended by Cajun chef Paul Prudhomme) or unsalted butter (what the RGB uses)

¼ cup all-purpose flour

2 cups chopped brown onions (1 large onion)

1 cup chopped green bell pepper (1 whole pepper)

1 cup chopped celery (about 3 stalks)

2 tablespoons 3 whole garlic cloves, minced

Optional: ½ 14.4-ounce can 8 ounces diced tomatoes

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon Essence, recipe follows

2 cups 1 quart shrimp stock, recipe follows

1 pound medium shrimp (21 to 25 count per pound), peeled and deveined shells-on and deveined

2 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves

Steamed white rice, for serving

¼-½ cup thinly sliced green onion tops, for garnish


For Essence:

2 ½ tablespoons paprika

2 tablespoons salt

2 tablespoons garlic powder

1 tablespoon black pepper

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried thyme


For Stock:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup coarsely chopped yellow onions

½ cup coarsely chopped celery

½ cup coarsely chopped carrots

1 pound (about 1 quart) shrimp shells and heads 1 ½ pounds cooked shrimp shells and lobster shells

3 smashed garlic cloves

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoon black peppercorns

1 teaspoon dried thyme

2 teaspoons salt


Directions:

Shrimp Stock:

Place the shrimp shells and heads in a large colander and rinse under cold running water for several minutes. Combine the shrimp shells and remaining ingredients in a heavy 6-quart stockpot, add 4 quarts water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Sweat the onions, celery and carrots in the oil until softened. Add remaining ingredients, then fill with cold water until fully immersed. Bring to boil.


Skim to remove any foam that rises to the surface. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes, skimming occasionally.


Remove the stock from the heat and strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean container; let cool completely. Refrigerate the stock for up to 3 days or freeze in airtight containers for up to 2 months.


Spice Mix:

Combine all ingredients thoroughly.


Etouffée:

In a 2-quart saucepan, gently simmer 1 quart shrimp stock.


Melt the vegetable oil or butter in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the flour and stir continuously with a balloon whisk to make a roux. Stir the roux over medium heat until the color of peanut butter, 5 to 7 minutes. As the roux bubbles, slowly ladle in ¼ cup of stock at a time (up to 1 cup stock total) to keep the the roux spread across the bottom of the pan.


Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic to the roux, and cook, stirring often with a wooden spoon, for 10 minutes. If using, add the tomatoes to the pot, and season with the bay leaf, salt, cayenne, and ½ tablespoon of the Essence. Cook the tomatoes for 2 to 3 minutes and then whisk in the shrimp stock.


Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook the etouffée, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes. Season the shrimp with the remaining tablespoon of Essence and add them to the pot, stirring to evenly distribute. Cook the shrimp for 5 to 7 minutes, or until they are cooked through. Peel and chop shrimp. Save shells. Toss shrimp in remaining ½ tablespoon of Essence. In a 10” nonstick skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat and sauté shrimp until pink, about 1 minute.


Just before serving, add the chopped parsley to the stew and stir to combine.


Serve stew, then shrimp immediately over steamed white rice and garnish with sliced green onion tops.