A smooth, light brown roux provides a hearty, delicious base for the thick, Creole-style tomato sauce that is the essence of this dish. Flavored with onion, garlic, green bell pepper and a unique blend of spices, the sauce is a perfect match for jumbo shrimp and served over rice it makes a wonderful meal.
- 1 lb jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined (tails left on)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 green pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 can, 15 ounces diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1 bay leaf
- Pinch cayenne, or more to taste
- 4 scallions, chopped
- Steamed rice
- Make the roux by melting the butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Whisk in the flour until smooth. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the mixture is the color of peanut butter, 8 to 10 minutes. You want the color (and flavor) to develop gradually, so if the mixture appears to be darkening too quickly, lower the heat.
- Add the onion, garlic and green pepper and season with salt and pepper. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the onions are transparent, 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, Worcestershire, paprika, cumin and cayenne. Add the bay leaf, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning if desired.
- Remove the bay leaf, raise the heat to medium and stir in the shrimp. Cook just long enough for the shrimp to turn pink and opaque, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the scallions and remove from the heat. Adjust the seasoning if needed and let stand for 2 minutes. Serve over steamed rice.