This rich, decadent New Orleans-inspired Smothered Shrimp and Andouille Sausage with Creamy Parmesan Peppercorn Grits is perfect for your Fat Tuesday!
This classic Southern comfort food actually originated in the coastal low country of South Carolina as a fisherman’s breakfast. After Craig Claiborne of The New York Times visited a popular restaurant there in 1985 that served it and subsequently wrote about it, this once humble regional dish gained national notoriety.
It has now evolved into an iconic dish that appears on restaurant menus all across the South and practically every Southern home cook also has their own version.
My version was inspired by a recipe from Emeril Lagasse, so it has a distinct New Orleans flair.
The Cajun seasoning, fire-roasted tomatoes and Andouille sausage give this smothered shrimp dish an amazing depth of flavor without having to make a time-consuming roux. Make the Cajun seasoning yourself, or try to find a good salt-free blend such as Penzeys so you can control the salt level. As with any spicy seasoning, adjust it to YOUR taste. What’s hot for one person can taste barely seasoned to another.
If you want to make this ahead of time, prepare to the point of adding the shrimp. Cool thoroughly and refrigerate. To serve, bring to a simmer in a saucepan, then add the shrimp and cook through.
While we’re on the subject, please try to always use wild-caught American shrimp. I don’t want to make you lose your appetite by telling you in detail about imported farm-raised shrimp, so just let me tell you that wild-caught American shrimp is safer and has a superior texture. It’s all I will eat and the only shrimp I use for my customers.
The grits are also best prepared shortly before serving. Quick (not instant) grits are fine to use and are readily available in the cereal aisle. If yo mama taught you to always use stone-ground, then, by all means, you’d better do it.
Laissez les bon temps roulez!
20 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
50 minTotal Time
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
3 links (7 ounces) cooked Andouille sausage links, halved lengthwise and sliced
1 can (14.5-ounce) chicken broth
1 can (15-ounce) diced fire-roasted tomatoes, undrained
12 ounces large wild-caught American shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail removed
1/3 cup heavy cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons chopped parsley plus more for garnish
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup quick grits
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
Heat butter and oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, reduce heat to medium-low and cook 3 to 4 minutes or until beginning to soften. Add the green bell pepper and celery. Cook 7 to 8 minutes or until very soft.
Stir in garlic, flour, Cajun seasoning and cayenne and cook briefly (15 seconds).
Add sausage, chicken broth and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes or until reduced slightly and thickened.
Stir in shrimp and cook 2 to 3 minutes or until just firm. Stir in heavy cream and heat through. Serve with grits.
Bring chicken broth to a boil. Add salt to taste. Slowly stir in quick grits and cook per package directions. Stir in cheese, cream and black pepper. Serve with shrimp.
MAKE AHEAD; Can be prepared up to two days ahead WITHOUT the shrimp. Heat on the stovetop and add shrimp before serving. The grits are best prepared shortly before serving.