Authentic Cajun Shrimp Recipe

If you are making a Cajun shrimp recipe, the flavor of the shrimp should outshine all other ingredients, even the spice. When making any Cajun shrimp dish, make sure to purchase the freshest shrimp on the market and use homemade stock.

Shrimp Etouffee
Etouffee literally means "smothered." These Cajun recipes are generally shellfish dishes that are covered with a sauce, such as a roux, that has been cooked down until it morphs into something completely new and utterly divine when poured over rice.

Ingredients You Will Need:
½ cup butter
1 pound shrimp
2 cups water
1 medium onion
1 cup celery, chopped (with leaves)
1 cup bell peppers, chopped
½ tablespoon crushed thyme
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon crushed oregano
1 teaspoon crushed basil
½ teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons warm water
3 cups rice, boiled

Heat the butter in a cast iron skillet. Peel the shrimp, dump the shells into two cups of water and bring the saucepan to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes to make stock.

Meanwhile, dump the shrimp into the skillet with the butter, and cook them until they turn a nice pink. When the shrimp are cooked throughout-about three minutes-remove them and add the vegetables to the skillet. Deglaze the skillet with the shrimp stock, stirring quickly to loosen bits that have become hard and cooked to the bottom of the pan.

Cook the vegetables until they become tender. Return the shrimp to the skillet, and sprinkle the thyme, garlic, paprika, oregano, basil and pepper over them. Mix the shrimp into the vegetables to get an even blend. To thicken the stock, add the cornstarch to the water, and mix until smooth. Slowly add the cornstarch mix to the etouffee, stirring constantly.

Pour several large scoops of shrimp etouffee over hot rice and enjoy hot.

Note: If you prefer salt on your food, add the salt to the recipe in the last five minutes of cooking, or add salt to the rice when you boil it. Additionally, cooking the rice in homemade stock will keep the flavors going throughout the entire dish.

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