The Weekend Gourmet: Cookbook Spotlight: Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine...Featuring New Orleans-Style Barbecue Shrimp F

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cookbook Spotlight: Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine...Featuring New Orleans-Style Barbecue Shrimp

I grew up less than an hour from Galveston on the Texas Gulf Coast, so fresh seafood is something that I learned to appreciate from a very young age. My Grandpa Wofford was also an avid fisherman, and my Grandma Wofford would often fry up the fish that he brought home! To this day, seafood is among my favorite foods…I especially love shrimp and fish cooked just about any way.  I was very excited to receive a copy of Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine cookbook recently to read and share a recipe with you! The cookbook is written by Forth Worth Chef Jon Bonnell, and it features a wide range of seafood cooked in a variety of methods. Chapters in the book include Chilled and Raw and Sautéed or Pan Seared. 

Chef Bonnell pairs his native Texas heritage with classic culinary training to create inventive, delicious dishes that have a definite Texas accent! Distinguished as one of the foremost experts on fine wild game and Texas Cuisine, he’s now turning his attention to seafood.  With a passion for sharing knowledge with others, there’s never a technique or recipe he won’t share. Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine contains so many mouth-watering recipes, and the photographs are gorgeous. What I especially appreciate about this cookbook is that the recipes are very approachable. Chef Bonnell’s writing style makes every recipe seem totally doable for the home chef of all skill levels. Recipes that caught my eye include decadent Lobster Mac and Cheese, Crawpuppies (i.e., crawfish hushpuppies), and the recipe I’m sharing today: New Orleans-Style Barbequed Shrimp. What I really love about this dish is that it packs a ton of robust flavor using ingredients that I have in my kitchen at all times…and it’s so quick to make. Once the shrimp are peeled, the dish can be cooked and on the table in about 15 minutes! This recipe features sweet jumbo Gulf shrimp cooked in a buttery spicy-tangy sauce. It can be served as a starter…or doubled for a complete meal for two. Hint: don’t forget to pair these shrimp with lots of crusty bread for dipping into the flavorful sauce…trust me! We had a big pot of seafood and andouille gumbo for dinner earlier this week, and these shrimp made a fabulous starter paired with bowls of steaming gumbo.

New Orleans-Style Barbecued Shrimp
Recipe from  Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine
Photo provided by Chef Jon Bonnell
Per Chef Bonnell: In Texas, we tend to associate the word barbecue with grills and smoke. In this dish, however, it’s all done right on the stovetop. This classic New Orleans-style dish is as much about the sauce as it is the shrimp. It can be done with whole, head-on shrimp if you prefer to get some hands dirty, but I tend to use shrimp with only the tail on to make it easier to navigate. Either way, plenty of bread is a mustas the dark, peppery butter sauce is likely to be the most memorable part of the dish. 

Ingredients: 
  • 8 jumbo wild Gulf shrimp (10-15 count)
  • 12 tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) butter
  • 1 tsp. chopped garlic
  • 4 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tbs. water
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp. Cajun/Creole seasoning [NOTE: Chef Bonnell’s Texas Red Dirt Rub Creole Blend is available at waterstexas.com]
  • 1 lemon
  • Bread
Directions:
Step 1: Remove shells from shrimp; rinse and devein, leaving only the tail portion (optional). Cut the butter into 6-8 cubes. In a large nonstick pan, heat the chopped garlic with 1 of the butter cubes over medium heat just until it begins to bubble, then add all liquids and seasonings. Once the pan comes to a simmer, add the shrimp. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into the pan, then add the lemon halves to the pan as well. 
Step 2: Simmer the mixture until the shrimp are cooked, roughly 2-3 minutes. Turn the shrimp over once as they cook. Swirl the pan while adding in the remaining butter and continue swirling until the butter has been emulsified into the sauce.
Step 3: Remove the lemon halves and discard. Transfer the shrimp to a large bowl and pour the sauce over the top. Serve with plenty of bread for soppingNote: I placed my shrimp into individual serving dishes, along with warm crusty French bread.
Wowza, was this dish ever good…it was bursting with the Big Flavor that Michael and I love. The buttery sauce is tangy from the lemon and Worcestershire…and spicy from the Creole seasoning! Because the shrimp cook in the sauce, they soak in its goodness.  The sauce is lick-the-plate good, so lots of crusty French bread is really a must for this dish. I can’t wait to make this dish again and again this Spring and Summer…and Michael concurs. 

I hope you’ll take a moment to visit Chef Bonnell’s websites: www.bonnellstexas.com and www.waterstexas.com to learn more about his cookbooks and product lines. If you find yourself in the DFW Metroplex, make sure to visit his restaurants Bonnell’s Fine Texas Cuisine and Waters - Bonnell’s Coastal Cuisine in Fort Worth. We can’t wait to try his restaurants next time we’re up for a weekend getaway! Waters Fine Coastal Cuisine cookbook is available for purchase at www.waterstexas.com, throughout Texas at Central Market locations, and nationwide at Barnes and Noble (in store and online) and other fine retailers. Suggested retail price is for the book is $35. 

Disclosure: I received a review copy of Waters Final Coastal Cuisine to facilitate this article. All opinions expressed are my own.

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