12/22/21

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice)

An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice. 

A few months ago, a reader from Louisiana named Raul commented on my recipe for Carolina Chicken Bog to commend me for distinguishing between Cajun and Creole jambalaya in my write-up (the chicken bog is similar to Cajun jambalaya). Which made me feel good since it’s a major pet peeve of mine for folks to glance at a regional recipe and call it something it isn’t.

Raul circled back and asked if I’d ever heard of something called Shrimp Delicate. He said, “There is an official Louisiana recipe from the State web site that I have never seen anyone duplicate in their food blogs. My wife and I had it in a diner in Baton Rouge about 7-8 years ago. It's called Shrimp Delicate and it's made with an envelope of dry pot roast or beef stew seasoning. Have you ever tried it or even heard of it? We make it all the time since being exposed to the recipe.”

Well, I was intrigued! And if this guy knew enough about Cajun/Creole cooking to know Cajun Jambalaya doesn’t have tomatoes in it, then I kinda felt like he knew a thing or two about the cuisine!

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

I googled the recipe and landed on the Louisiana website where, sure enough, there was a recipe like he described. I knew it had to be same because of the beef stew packet.

Speaking of… OK, I legit did not know they made seasoning packets for beef stew. At first I thought he was talking about Lipton Beefy Onion soup mix which is what I use to make pot roast but upon closer inspection I learned it’s actual Beef Stew Seasoning Mix (which will thicken because it has cornstarch in it).

Since the recipe uses a thickening stew packet, I was surprised that there’s a little roux action in it too. I thought it would be one or the other or that the beef stew packet was just a cheater way to make an étouffée without a roux.

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

Because here’s the thing… making a dark roux can be verrrrry tricky since it’s so prone to burning in the 20-30 minutes it takes to get the dark color you’re after. With this recipe, you still have a light roux (all easy-peasy when you add flour to the sautéing veggies) AND you get that deep dark color and glossy finish from the stew packet. 

This recipe is very much like Shrimp Étouffée but way easier and much quicker to make! Once you’ve chopped your veggies and prepped your shrimp, the whole shebang is done in less than 45 minutes!

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

I really liked the base. Like, really liked it. It’s not quite a gravy because it’s thinner than gravy and not too heavy. It’s not quite a sauce because it’s richer than sauce and super glossy. It’s its own thing! It’s a DELICATE!

Also, in my mind, I pronounce delicate like delegate for this dish. I imagine some Uncle Jessie looking fella looking over the back forty, hollering through the kitchen window, “Sugah, that shrimp delahCATE sure does smell good, yessum it surely does!”. I’m kinda crossing my fingers that someone from Louisiana is going to comment and say, YES! That’s actually how we pronounce it!! 

We loved this recipe. WE LOVED IT. And it’s so beautiful!! It was super easy and I’d say, dang near fool-proof. If you’re wanting a taste of the Bayou without working all day at it, this is the recipe for you!!

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

Since I’d never had the dish before, I tried to keep to the recipe but I did change a few things. The only things I did different was to…

  • Add garlic (the original just has a “dash” of garlic powder)
  • Use beef broth instead of water then reduced the salt by half (I may try chicken or vegetable broth next time just to experiment)
  • Use a little less oil
  • Add the green onions at the end so they didn’t cook to oblivion

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

I am so thankful Raul told me about this recipe! It really is simple and easy to make. Don't look at the list of ingredients and pass this one by. It's just:

  • Vegetable oil
  • Onion, bell pepper and celery (the Holy Trinity)
  • Flour
  • Beef or chicken broth
  • Beef stew seasoning mix
  • Herbs & Spices
  • Green onions
  • Shrimp and
  • Cooked white rice

If I were still hitting an office 40+ hours a week, I would chop the veggies and prep the shrimp before I left for work (or if you’re not a morning person like me, do it the night before) then throw it all together when I got home from work.

The whole meal is ready in under 45 minutes AND it’s a one-pan meal (other than the rice) so there won’t be a ton of dishes to clean. It’s the Big Easy-Peasy! [somewhere one of my kids is rolling their eyes at that]

Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.

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Shrimp Delicate (Cajun Shrimp & Rice) - An easy cajun recipe from Louisiana with shrimp cooked in a silky, flavor-packed sauce or gravy (much like an easy étouffée) served over rice.


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INGREDIENTS
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups beef or chicken broth
  • 1 1.5-oz packet beef stew seasoning mix
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 green onions, diced
  • 2 lbs shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Cooked white rice
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Sauté onion, bell pepper and celery in vegetable oil in a deep skillet or wide saucepan over medium heat for 8-10 minutes (or until onions are starting to caramelize). Add garlic then continue cooking 2 minutes.
  2. If you haven’t already, get your rice cooking.
  3. Add flour to veggies then cook and gently stir for 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in broth, beef stew seasoning mix, pepper, salt, cayenne and parsley then cook until simmering. Reduce heat to low then continue cooking, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
  5. Gently stir in green onions and shrimp. Cover and continue cooking over low heat for about 10 minutes or until shrimp are cooked though.
  6. Serve over rice and garnish with additional parsley and green onions if desired.


12 comments:

  1. Wow, Mandy...this looks fantastic!! I can't wait to try this. Happy Holidays!!

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  2. I have some Royal Reds that are crying to be put in this dish! Thanks for introducing us to Shrimp Delicate. Merry Christmas!

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  3. what seasonings could you use instead of the Beef Stew seasoning mix?

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    Replies
    1. You can substitute pot roast dry seasoning mix. I have done both and they are great with either. But either one is the Key ingredient so don't leave it out.

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  4. Regarding whether or not you can use other rices: since the rice is not an ingredient in the cooking, yes- use whatever rice you want, just make sure that it's ready in time to serve the dish on top of it. :)
    My personal preference is Thai jasmine rice regardless of what it's going with because it's subtle yet delicious flavour adds a great dimension to whatever is on top of it. Plain white rice is BORING.

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    Replies
    1. I fully agree...jasmine rice is our favorite!! I buy the HUGE bag at Sam's Club because we go through so much of it! The flavor is so much better than regular white rice :)

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  5. Can this be made with frozen cooked shrimp ?

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    Replies
    1. Just thaw them and add them at the end since they are already cooked and only need heated through.

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  6. Made this last night, it was DELICIOUS! Surprisingly easy (although the prep takes longer than 10 mins). Love the one-pot meal, easy to clean. Made no changes, and it was perfect as-is. To the skeptical, try the Beef Stew Mix, it really adds an interesting and different flavor profile than the usual.

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  7. I used the good plates for this one ( as opposed to the everyday paper plates)
    That sauce is��.

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  8. We just call it shrimp stew TBH

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  9. Thank you Mandy for your recipes. I have tried several recipes all with excellent results. Could you please repost your perfect rice every time post again. I depended on it because, yes it did make perfect rice every time. I failed to write it down, and although simple I can’t remember the details other than putting the lid on cockeyed

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Hi there! While I’m not able to respond to every comment, I try hard to answer any questions that haven’t been addressed in the post, recipe or in other comments.

I can tell you now 1) I have no idea if you can substitute Minute Rice or brown rice in my recipes because I’ve never used them and 2) If I know how to convert a recipe to a Crock Pot version, I will make a note about it (otherwise, I don’t know).

And though I may not respond to them all, I do read each and every comment and I LOVE to hear from you guys! Thanks, y’all! - Mandy