Similar to an étoufée, this saucy, Louisiana style shrimp dish is an adaptation of a recipe called Shrimp Delicate (see notes below).
The shrimp are simmered until tender in a sauce made with sautéed onion, bell pepper and celery (the holy trinity), a variety of spices and beef stock (a rather unusual pairing for shellfish).
The stock, along with a bit of tomato paste, adds great depth of flavor to the whole dish. Garnished with scallions and fresh parsley and served over rice, it makes a hearty meal with a distinctive Louisiana flair.Print
Louisiana Style Shrimp and Rice
Served over rice, the star of this easy shrimp recipe is a thick, flavorful sauce made with sautéed bell pepper, onion and celery, spices and a surprise ingredient that really makes the dish.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings
- 1-1/4 lbs large shrimp, peeled (tails left on) and deveined
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
- Pinch of cayenne
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 1 cup celery, diced
- 1 medium green bell pepper, cored and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-1/2 cups beef stock
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 3 to 4 scallions, sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 4 servings steamed white or brown rice
- Combine the flour, paprika, oregano, onion powder, celery seed and cayenne in a small bowl and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the celery and bell pepper and continue cooking for 2 minutes longer.
- Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute more, then sprinkle the seasoned flour mixture over the entire pan.
- Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the flour is lightly browned. Stir in the beef broth and tomato paste and simmmer, stirring constantly, until the mixture has thickened to a gravy consistency.
- Add the shrimp and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until they turn pink and opaque, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the scallions and parsley, reserving a bit of each for garnish if desired. Combine well and remove from the heat. Serve over steamed rice.
About the Shrimp Delicate recipe:
The recipe for Shrimp Delicate was sent to us by readers (thank you Pat and Melanie) who had it while on a trip to Baton Rouge. They enjoyed it so much they decided to share, and we’re very glad they did.
We did a little research and found what we think might be the original version on LousianaSeafood.com. That version calls for 2 lbs of shrimp and a beef stew seasoning packet to flavor the sauce.
Because most of our every day recipes are made to serve 4, our adaptation cuts back the quantity to 1-1/4 lbs of shrimp and replaces the primary flavors of the beef stew seasoning packet with a combination of spices, beef stock and bit of tomato paste.
What’s the Difference Between Étouffée, Gumbo and Jambalaya?
There are a lot of differing opinions when it comes to defining these classic Cajun and Creole dishes but here’s a brief summary that can help you sort out the details when you’re looking to give one a try.
Étouffée: Loosely translated, the word étouffée means smothered in French. Generally this dish will be made with some type of seafood (usually crayfish) that’s been simmered in a roux-thickened sauce flavored with bell pepper, onion and celery and served over rice.
Gumbo: A gumbo derives it’s distinctive flavor from a dark roux and can be made with a variety of meats, seafood and vegetables, but most gumbo recipes include okra, tomatoes and onions as well as some type of sausage or ham.
For a good example, check out our recipe for Easy Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo.
Jambalaya: This classic dish is similar to a Spanish paella as it combines cooked rice with a variety of meats and vegetables. Tomatoes, onions and green peppers are common ingredients, but the dish is very versatile and varies from cook to cook.