Cooking Louisiana  -  Stuffed Shrimp
Stuffed Shrimp

You'll find stuffed shrimp on your seafood platter all around south Louisiana. You will be frying these stuffed shrimp at the end. This takes some time to prepare so early prep is good.

1 lb. 21-25 count or larger fresh shrimp peeled and deveined. Leave the very tail shell part on and soak as indicated below (1)
2 eggs beaten (to soak bread)
1 stick margarine or butter
1 cup chopped onions
3/4 cup chopped celery (Step One)

1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup celery chopped fine (Step Two)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped bell pepper.
3 slices stale bread (crust removed)
1/2 - 3/4 lb. boiled shrimp chopped extra fine or ground (salad shrimp would work)... and, this is optional.
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire
Salt, black pepper and hot sauce to taste.

If you're going to do this for supper, leave the 3 slices of bread out in the open air on your counter that morning. Or, very lightly toast it just to dry it out, not brown it.

(1) Take the fresh shrimp and deep butterfly them then soak in hot sauce and Creole seasoning in the fridge for at least an hour. A zip lock works good for this - move around a little every so often..

In a large sauce pan sauté onions and (Step One) celery in margarine until soft.
Put bread to soak in egg and set aside.
Add boiled shrimp and continue to cook for 10 minutes. Add soaked bread to the pot and mix very well. Add green onions, parsley, bell pepper, (Step Two) celery and seasonings, bread crumbs and Worcestershire and mix well (you'll have to break the soaked bread up). Keep the eggs to use later. Continue to cook on low for about 5 minutes stirring well. Taste and add seasonings as needed. Turn off fire to let cool so you can handle it.

Hint: If you only want 1/2 stuffed and half regular fried shrimp just do half of them stuffed and freeze the remaining stuffing for later in a zip-lock.

Once the main mix is cooled take a handful of mixture and make a ball around each fresh shrimp. If the mixture is too loose add some milk to the pot to thicken, if it's too thick add some bread crumbs; it's a feel and sticking thing.

You want about 3/8" of stuffing around the shrimp. If it doesn't stick too good lightly coat the shrimp with flour. This is a hand technique thing; it won't be perfect.

Put oil to heat to 365ºF for frying.

Take the eggs you soaked the bread in and add one egg and 1/4 cup of milk and beat well; add some seasoning.

Put some flour in a bowl; about a cup.

Dredge the shrimp one at a time in the flour, then in the egg, then back in the flour. Let them sit for a few minutes. Don't be afraid to re-shape them as you go.

Fry for about 5 minutes. Be careful not to fry too many at a time or oil will cool too much.