Cajun Shrimp

Cajun Shrimp

Cajun Shrimp
From Emeril Lagasse

Time for an official John recipe.  If it has the word “Cajun” in the name, you can be darn sure it was hand selected by him, and this one is no exception.  In fact, we just booked a hotel for our first trip to the creole mecca itself, New Orleans.  Unfortunately the trip isn’t until next May, which means we’ve got to fend for ourselves for the time being.  We usually stick with our classics, shrimp and grits and etouffee, but I’m definitely glad John took the time to find something new for our repertoire.  The sauce these shrimp are swimming in is nothing short of heaven.  You can serve it with whatever starch you want, just make sure you have something to soak up the goodness.


  • 3 lb shrimp, in their shell
  • 2 Tbsp Creole seasoning, divided
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 cup white onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp garlic, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 lemons, peeled and sectioned (like you would an orange)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (we used pinot grigio)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • chives, for garnish
  • grits, rice, biscuits or anything else starchy, for serving


  1. Peel the shrimp and remove tails, reserving shells and tails.
  2. Sprinkle shrimp with 1 tablespoon of the Creole seasoning and pepper, to taste.  Rub seasoning into the shrimp.  Refrigerate shrimp while you make the sauce base.
  3. To make sauce base, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot over high heat.  When the oil is hot add onions and garlic and saute, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.  Add the reserved shrimp shells and tails, remaining Creole seasoning, bay leaves, lemons, water, Worcestershire sauce, wine, salt and pepper, to taste.  Stir well and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes.
  4. Strain into a small saucepan.  Place over high heat, bring to a boil, and cook until thick, syrupy and dark brown, for about 15 minutes.  Set sauce base aside.
  5. Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over high heat.  When the oil is hot, add the shrimp and saute, shaking the pan occasionally, for 2 minutes.  Add the cream and all of the sauce base.  Simmer, stirring, for 3 minutes.
  6. Use tongs to remove shrimp from the pan and place on plates with starch base.  Add butter to the sauce and whisk until melted and combined.  Pour over shrimp.

Serves 4.

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One Response to Cajun Shrimp

  1. Doreen Dodero says:

    First, I would use raw shrimp with just the tails on. You did not mention deveining the shrimp when you removed the shells, but that would have to be done when purchased that way. I have done it and was not thrilled about it. I was also surprised about the amount of Worcestershire Sauce, but I guess that would add a lot of flavor.

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