My husband has been working out of town for a couple of weeks and, when he came home this weekend burned out on fast food and take-out, I knew that my kitchen was going to get steamy. He needed homecooked food and started listing all the dishes he wanted to fit in over the weekend. Of course, there had to be Saturday Night Steak Night. Cave man wants red meat!! Cave boy does, too! But, another dish on his wish list was Shrimp Creole. He loves it although we don't make it often. So, I pulled out one of my favorite cookbooks, Johnnie Gabriel's Second Helpings, and found a recipe that I thought would please a hungry man. And, he chopped all of the veggies himself which pleased this tired woman.
6 slices bacon
1-1/2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups chopped onion
4 green onions, divided into green and white parts
3/4 cup bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 29-oz. can tomato sauce
6 oz. water
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 lbs. cooked and peeled shrimp
3 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
White rice, prepared according to package directions
In a large saucepan, cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Set aside to drain. Discard all but 3 tbsp. of the grease.
Return the pan to the stovetop and stir in the flour over low heat to make a thin roux, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the onion, the white part of the green onions, bell pepper, celery, and garlic, and saute for 3 to 4 minutes or until softened. The mixture should be dry.
Add the tomato sauce, water, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper and simmer over low to medium heat for 25 minutes. Add the shrimp, parsley, crumbled bacon, and green onion tops to the sauce and continue cooking for 10 minutes. Serve over rice.
So, I think when you start off with frying bacon for a recipe, you're off to a good start.
While I fried the bacon, Eric chopped the garlic and onions.
And these green onions...
And these bell peppers...
And this celery, too.
While cooking, Eric sampled the dish and decided we needed to add a few drops of hot sauce. I also added a sprinkle of dried thyme, a couple of tablespoons of white wine, and a pinch of baking soda (one of my little cooking secrets) to cut the acidity of the tomato sauce. These additions just enhanced the flavors.
And, it was delicious! The man was satisfied with the results. I think you will be, too.