Cajun French: la chevrette (la shuv-ret) – shrimp
New Orleans BBQ Shrimp does not have BBQ sauce or anything related to BBQ. In fact, no one is sure how the name came about. What is sure, the original BBQ Shrimp was developed at Pascal’s Manale Restaurant in New Orleans in the 1950s. The recipe was based on a dish had by Vincent Sutro, a regular at Pascal’s, while visiting Chicago. Unfortunately Sutro could not remember the exact ingredients; something about shrimp, butter and pepper. So chef Jake Radosta went into the kitchen, came out with a dish and served Sutro. Sutro said it was not the dish he had in Chicago, but it was better than the dish he had. BBQ Shrimp was born and has been on the menu ever since. Today many restaurants and home cooks prepare BBQ Shrimp, each having their own twist.
Being Cajun, we add our own twist to the recipe. To be honest, it is the way it was prepared in Laurie’s family. The Cajun Trinity is smothered down in olive oil before adding anything else. We like it this way because the trinity gives the gravy some substance, especially when dipping bread.
We admit there is an enormous amount of butter. But then that is what makes the gravy so good. Don’t shortchange on the butter. It is not an everyday dish, so make it and savor every bite.
Mais C’est Bon!