Shrimp & Sausage Étouffée

Here’s another NOLA staple that I’ve come to love through the years, since my last visit. It’s pretty intimidating when you riffle through étouffée recipes for the first time. But you simply must give it a try. It’s not that difficult, really, and your sophisticated palate will definitely be rewarded.

My version here may not be as rich and decadent as what they would normally serve in the bayou, but if you don’t mind living longer either, you’d be happy to know this one doesn’t skimp on flavor one bit, nonetheless!

Oh, and one last thing… just like many other dishes, this one will develop a much better flavor the night after.

I say… Laissez les bons temps rouler!

Ingredients (serves 6):
1 lb. Raw Large Shrimp, peeled and seasoned
1 lb. Turkey Sausage, sliced
EVOO
2 tbs. Unsalted Butter
1/2 cup Unbleached Flour
1 Onion, finely diced
3 Celery Ribs, finely diced
1 Green Bell Pepper, finely diced
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
4 cups low-sodium Chicken Stock
Salt & Pepper
Parsley, finely chopped
Scallions, finely chopped
Cajun Seasoning Mix (2 Bay Leaves and 1 tsp. each Natural Sea Salt, Paprika, Cayenne, Dried Thyme, Dried Basil and Fresh Black Pepper)

Directions:
Prep everything beforehand. Mix seasonings, dice the trinity (onion, celery, bell pepper), mince garlic, season shrimp, etc.

In a medium-heated heavy pot or dutch oven, fry sliced sausage with a little EVOO and set aside. In the same pot, add butter and about 1/4 cup of EVOO. When butter melts, quickly whisk in flour until fully incorporated. Using a wooden spatula, stir continuously (to prevent flour from scorching) until roux is brown, about 10 minutes. Add trinity and garlic to the mix and cook for another 5 minutes or so. Make sure the roux doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan, so add more EVOO if you need to.

Now, add the stock to deglaze the pot for a couple of minutes. Then, sprinkle in the Cajun seasoning mix and bring to a boil. Let reduce uncovered, still in medium heat, for about 40 minutes or until liquid reaches a gravy-like consistency. In the end, stir in the sausage slices and raw shrimp for a couple more minutes. When it returns to boil, turn off heat and re-season accordingly. Let simmer for another 5 minutes before serving.

To serve, plate a bed of rice and smother with étouffée. Garnish liberally with parsley and scallions.

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