Seafood Gumbo

image Poppy Tooker’s Seafood Gumbo Scott and I stopped by the Crescent City Farmers Market at the American Can Company last week but because we didn’t get there till 6pm, most of the vendors were closing up shop. As we were walking out, a woman with a bunch of zip lock bags asked if we wanted gumbo crabs…for free. I felt the universe was challenging me to revisit a dish I had so poorly executed in the past. I thanked her and took a bag of crabs. With the help of Poppy Tooker’s recipe, this yankee made right with the gumbo gods. Thanks Poppy!


1/2 cup oil 1 cup flour 4 gumbo crabs 16 ounces crab claw meat 2 pounds shrimp 1 onion, chopped 1 bell pepper, chopped 3 stalks celery, chopped 2 pounds okra, sliced 1/4 inch oil for frying okra 1 1-pound can crushed tomatoes 1 gallon shrimp stock 1 clove garlic 2 teaspoon thyme 1 bay leaf 1 bunch green onions Crystal Hot Sauce to taste

Method of Preparation:

  1. Peel shrimp and combine peels, onion skins and tops in a stock pot. Cover with water and boil for 20 minutes.
  2. Strain and reserve.
  3. Fry okra in very hot oil until lightly browned (or roast).
  4. Make a dark roux with the flour and oil, cooking to the color of milk chocolate brown. Add onions, stirring together until the roux darkens to a bittersweet chocolate brown. Add celery and bell pepper. Sauté for five minutes, then add the gumbo crabs, tomatoes, okra, herbs and shrimp stock. Add garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer 45 minutes or longer.
  5. Ten minutes before serving add shrimp, crab meat, and green onions. Add Crystal Hot Sauce and salt as needed. Serve on top of cooked rice.

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Margarita Marinated BBQ Shrimp Caesar Salad


Margarita Marinated BBQ Shrimp Caesar Salad

After riding our bikes from Midcity to Greek Fest, Scott and I were sun-burned and tired from our canoe ride on Bayou St. John. We had riden along Lake Ponchatrain and I started craving Gulf shrimp.  We luckily had some in the freezer so when we got home, Scott threw them in the marinade and I made Caesar dressing for this perfect dish on a HOT New Orleans Sunday.


Shrimp marinade

24 large head on shrimp
1/4 cup of margarita mix
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp of salt
2 ounces of tequila

One head of romaine lettuce

1/2 Packet of Cajun King BBQ Shrimp Seasoning


Directions for Shrimp

Skewer and grill marinated shrimp about 10 minutes (depends on heat of grill). Remove from skewers and finish on stove top with 2 tbsp of butter and 1/2 packet of bbq shrimp seasoning mix.

Caesar Dressing
1 egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 anchovies
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup shredded parmesan


Add salt and pepper to the salad bowl. Using the back of a soup spoon, grind the garlic against the wall of the bowl until it becomes a paste. Then add the anchovies, and grind them into a paste. Follow the same procedure, adding the Dijon, egg yolk, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce, 1 at a time. Toss with a couple of chopped heads of romaine. Place grilled shrimp on top of greens.

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Shrimp Creole Spinach Cannelloni


Delicious solution for leftover Shrimp Creole! 

Shrimp Creole Spinach Cannelloni


Leftover Shrimp Creole
Cannelloni Shells
Half diced onion
4 oz Ricotta Cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
1/2 Can Spinach, drained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook cannelloni shells per box directions. Spoon shrimp, peppers, and onions from leftover shrimp creole and put in bowl. Mix with spinach, diced onion, ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, dash of hot sauce, salt and pepper to season.

Fill cannelloni shells with mixture. Place in baking dish. Cover with sauce from shrimp creole leftovers. Sprinkle with more parmesan. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

Shrimp Creole


Shrimp Creole


2 lbs. Peeled and Deveined Shrimp
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Large Onion, finely chopped
2 Ribs Celery, finely chopped
1 small Green Pepper, finely Chopped
2 Tbsp Creole Seasoning
2 Tbsp Tomato Paste
28 oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
2 Cups Shrimp Stock (can)
2 Tbsp Garlic, minced
2 Bay leaves
Cayenne to taste
Kosher Salt to taste
1 tsp Black Pepper
1 bunch Fresh Thyme
2 Tbsp Tabasco
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1/8 Cup Flat Leaf Parsley, minced
Brown Rice


Melt the butter in a large sauce pan over medium high heat. When the butter begins to froth add 1/2 cup of the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden brown. Add the remaining onions, celery, and bell pepper, reduce the heat to medium and season with 1 Tbsp Creole Seasoning and a healthy pinch of salt. Sweat the vegetables until soft.

Add the tomato paste mixing well, and cook, stirring constantly, until the paste begins to brown, then add tomatoes.  Stir well.

Add the white wine, and turn the heat to high until most of the alcohol burns off. Add the Shrimp Stock, remaining Creole seasoning, garlic, bay leaves, black pepper, white pepper, cayenne (to taste), and Thyme. Bring to a boil then reduce to a low simmer. Simmer for 30-45 minutes.

Add the hot sauce, Worcestershire, and season to taste with Kosher salt. Last chance to re-season your sauce, remember that good cooking is all about proper seasoning. Make your Boiled Rice, and season your shrimp with 1 Tbsp Kosher salt and a pinch of Cayenne.

Bring the sauce to a boil, reduce the heat to low and add the shrimp. The key is to not overcook your shrimp. Let them slowly simmer in the sauce until just cooked through.

Serve with boiled rice and garnish with the remaining parsley.

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