Showing posts with label Key West pink shrimp. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Key West pink shrimp. Show all posts

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Hayley Snow's Easy Shrimp Salad #recipe @LucyBurdette

LUCY BURDETTE: One of the great joys of writing the Key West mysteries is imagining what the characters would really do, and that includes what they would really eat. They are characters in a book, but they honestly begin to feel like real people. I can picture Hayley Snow and Miss Gloria on their houseboat wondering what to have for dinner. And then I can imagine them remembering that--oh joy!--there are shrimp left over from the night before.

Then Hayley goes to work. She looks in the fridge again and finds celery and onions and capers. And Miss Gloria goes out to the back deck and picks some fresh dill and a few beautiful ripe tomatoes. And then they whip up a quick but delicious shrimp salad served over greens and sliced tomatoes, with maybe a delicious leek biscuit on the side. Can't you just see it? And my husband says, where did this recipe come from? And I say...Hayley made it, of course...


1/2 pound Key West or Stonington pink shrimp
1 small, mild onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 tablespoon capers
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

Boil the shrimp until just pink. Drain, then shell and clean out the vein. Cut these into bite-sized pieces. Add the onion, celery, capers, and dill, then mix the mayonnaise in. Serve over crisp salad greens or a sliced tomato.


FATAL RESERVATIONS is on bookshelves now! And you can follow Lucy on Facebook,  



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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Key West Boiled #Dinner #Recipe @LucyBurdette

LUCY BURDETTE: One of the nice things about living in Key West is that good friends visit us, escaping from the dreariness of winter. We spent Valentine's Day with our friends Jane and Jack Novick, and it was lovely to remember how we all met, and what kind of food we made for each other's wedding receptions!

Of course we did go out one night, but we cooked in too. We wanted something not too fussy, but utterly delicious. I remembered a dish that Jane made for us some years ago, and we adapted it for this occasion. It's delish, but very little trouble! (It would be even better with fresh corn on the cob, but the frozen was not bad...and I promise I will make something besides shrimp next week.)

Ingredients for Key West Boiled Dinner
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 5 tablespoons Creole seasoning (like Tony Chachere's)
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled but left whole
  • 1/2 to 1 pound fingerling potatoes (we used multicolored)
  • 1 package sausage of your choice, cut into 2-3 inch lengths
  • 1 package frozen corn on the cob
  • 1 1/2 pounds large Key West pink shrimp in shell

Bring a gallon of water to boil in a big pot. Squeeze the lemon into this, and drop in the lemon pieces, the garlic, the bay leaves, and the Creole seasoning. 

Simmer this together for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, wash the potatoes and rinse the shrimp. Add the potatoes to the water, simmer until almost soft. (About 10 minutes, depending on the size.) Add the sausage and corn, simmer a few minutes. Finally, add the shrimp, simmer until they turn quite pink--another 2-3 minutes. 

Dump the whole pot into a colander, drain, and serve on a large platter. 

Serve cocktail sauce (2/3 ketchup to 1/3 horseradish) and Dijon mustard on the side, along with a green salad.  

Everyone takes as much as they want and peels their own shrimp as they go. 

Until you are left with...this!

Hang in there northerners--that horrible winter will pass! And July will come soon too, bringing the sixth Key West food critic mystery, FINAL RESERVATIONS. You can pre-order it here.

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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Shrimp Creole #Recipe @LucyBurdette

LUCY BURDETTE: Because the Key West pink shrimp are so outstanding down here, I am always looking for a chance to use them. Years ago, I used to make a version of shrimp creole, but that recipe is long gone. Here's a version that is not too time-consuming, can be made ahead, and serves 6-8 dinner guests happily. Or six, with leftovers for the next day.


2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined (we figured on about 6 per person)

1- 16 oz. can chopped tomatoes
1 32 oz can crushed tomatoes in sauce
2 medium onions, chopped

2 bell peppers, chopped (or 3 small as I used)
3 stalks celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, diced
2 bay leaves
Salt & pepper
2-3 tsp Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning
1 tsp. sugar
1 cup chicken stock 

3 tbsp. flour
4 tbsp. oil

Cooked white rice

In a large pot, heat the flour and oil and stir over low heat for 10-15 minutes. (This is called a roux--be patient and make sure you don't burn it or the dish will be  ruined.)

Add the onions and sauté for about 10 minutes. Add the bell pepper, celery, and creole seasoning and sauté for another 15 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic and bay leaves and simmer for 30 - 40 minutes, stirring frequently. 

Add the stock and sugar; bring to a boil stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to med-low, and simmer for another 20 minutes, continuing to stir.

Just before you are ready to serve, add the shrimp and simmer for about 2 to 5 minutes stirring frequently. The shrimp should be bright pink but not rubbery. 


Serve over rice with a green vegetable or salad.

As with most soups and stews, it helps the flavors to deepen if you make the sauce a day ahead and let it sit in the refrigerator. (Or even the morning you'll serve it.)

 (That is my brother-in-law's gorgeous home-grown bok choi on the side.)

And this is what I served for dessert: best ever Southern Caramel Cake. Mmmmmm.....

Lucy writes the Key West food critic mysteries:


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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Festive Coconut Shrimp for a Book Launch #recipe @LucyBurdette @penguincozies

LUCY BURDETTE: I am so excited about this new book hitting shelves this week! So of course, I spent a long time thinking about what recipe would be festive enough for the launch of DEATH WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS. 

First I looked at the recipes in the back of the book. But you'd already seen Chef Edel's cheesy polenta with spring vegetables and Parmesan crisps, as well as the decadent Key lime parfaits, and Hayley's mom's spaghetti Bolognese recipe. Obviously, a recipe for hot dog casserole was not up to the big day, LOL.  (Though I did get some fan mail last week in which a reader told me her husband had already made that dish and the whole family gave it a thumbs up!)

Then it hit me – coconut shrimp! In the fifth Key West mystery, Hayley's mom is working as a caterer at Small Chef at Large for the winter season. (Based on the real-life Jennifer Cornell.) During one of the scenes, they are preparing coconut shrimp for a wedding:

My mother, swathed in a white apron, stood before an eight-burner gas range, fishing shrimp out of boiling oil and placing them on paper towels to drain.
“It smells wonderful in here,” I said. “What’s on the docket tonight?”
“It’s a wedding at the Oldest House on Duval Street,” Mom said. “The bride is a woman after my own heart—after choosing her man, she’s focused her heart and pocketbook on the menu.” Mom clapped her hands. All business.
“Will you taste this sauce, honey?” she asked, clip-clopping across the kitchen in her green clogs to grab two bowls of dipping sauce. “Jennifer usually serves the coconut shrimp with mango chutney, but I was thinking something a little more spicy and Asian might be a fabulous contrast.”
She handed me a small plate containing a piping-hot shrimp coated in a crispy coconut crust.

So here's my attempt to replicate that recipe and celebrate the new book. 

Ingredients (dinner for two people, hors d'oeuvres for four) 

1/4 pound large Key West pink shrimp, peeled and deveined (You may leave the tails on for a little extra visual oomph)

1/2 cup flour

One egg, beaten

1/2 cup dried unsweetened coconut, with more as needed

Vegetable oil (I use canola)

Prepare the shrimp by washing and peeling and deveining, and then pat them dry. Prepare three shallow bowls, one for the flour, one for the beaten egg, and the third for the coconut. (If you notice in the photo with the raw shrimp, the ones on top are Argentine pinks, while on the bottom are the Key West local pinks. We preferred those!)

Dip the shrimp in flour, then egg, and finally coconut, and set them on a plate until you have prepared all of them.

Now heat the vegetable oil in a heavy bottomed skillet. When the oil is hot, fry them several at a time until they are crispy and brown. This will only take a few minutes.

I served the shrimp with two sauces, one simple mango chutney from a jar. 

The other, a combination of 2 tablespoons of Thai sweet chili sauce mixed with 2 tablespoons of orange marmalade. 

If you plan to serve these for dinner, add white rice and a green salad.

DEATH WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS can be found wherever books are sold.

And big congrats to my MLK sisters, Krista Davis for THE GHOST AND MRS. MEWER and Cleo Coyle for ONCE UPON A GRIND!

DON'T FORGET: Mysteries make great stocking stuffers!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Crab Stuffed Shrimp a la Joyce Russell @LucyBurdette

Jeff with his mom,  Joyce Russell

LUCY BURDETTE: Over the New Year's holiday, we were lucky enough to have our kids visit us in Key West. The group included our son-in-law, Jeff, whose birthday falls on New Year's Eve. I don't particularly like going out to dinner on big holidays--the prices often seem high and the food not quite what it should be. So we had a birthday/New Year's Eve celebration at home. I knew that if Jeff was celebrating with his family, his mom would prepare his favorite stuffed shrimp. 

So I retrieved her instructions and made the recipe (with just a few tweaks) as part of our dinner. These shrimp are rich and delicious--just right for a special celebration!

2 lb bag jumbo raw shrimp, Key West pinks if available
1 bag of Pepperidge Farm stuffing mix (bread crumb style)
1 lb can lump crabmeat
1 stick butter
2 cups chicken broth
1/2-1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1/2 tsp celery salt
salt & pepper to taste
cayenne or hot sauce to taste
2/3 can of cream of shrimp or lobster soup mix (Campbells usually has it)

Peel the shrimp and devein--this is usually the job that John takes, which I so appreciate! Refrigerate the shrimp while you prepare the stuffing. 
In a large pot, melt the butter and add the two cups chicken broth. Then add the seasonings and bring to boil.  

Remove the pot from heat and add the stuffing mix and crabmeat.  Adjust the seasoning to taste.  Stir in 3/4 of the cream of shrimp soup and  mix well--you want the mixture to hang together without being too wet. 

Place the shrimp on oiled cookie sheets and spoon about two tablespoons of stuffing mix on top of each shrimp.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until the shrimp are cooked and the stuffing slightly browned.  Serve immediately. 

Lucy Burdette is the author of the Key West food critic mysteries. MURDER WITH GANACHE will be out on February 4, but you can pre-order it now.

Follow Lucy on Facebook, or Twitter, or Pinterest! She loves it when you pin her stuff:) 

And don't forget to enter the Goodreads giveaway for Murder with Ganache.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Spicy Shrimp and Avocado Stir-Fry

LUCY BURDETTE: I love Chinese and Japanese food but somehow I'm never able to replicate what they do in a restaurant. This dish approximates something I had years ago in a Japanese restaurant--the spicy shrimp pairs so well with the sweetness of the avocado. And of course, you can vary the hotness and the vegetables to your taste. (I found the beans, peas, and pepper in our garden.)

When I asked my husband if the dinner was blog-worthy, he said "definitely." 

But then looked down in dismay at our empty plates. 

"I hope you already took a picture!"

Stir-fried Spicy Shrimp with Avocado


3/4 cup long grain brown rice
1 and 1/2 cups water

6-8 shrimp, depending on size, peeled and deveined (If I was in Key West, I would use Key West pinks. But these I found in the frozen food section at the Stop and Shop and they were pretty darned good.)

1 tsp spicy chili sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
dash of soy sauce

Marinate the shrimp in the above mixture while you chop the veggies and cook the rice. (The rice takes about 1/2 an hour.)


a handful of green beans or snow peas 
1 small zucchini
1 small red onion
1 green pepper
1/2 ripe avocado

Sauce: mix 1/2 cup chicken broth with 1 more tsp chili sauce and 1 tsp cornstarch

Flash fry the vegetables in a hot pan with canola or peanut oil until partly tender. Set them aside while you fry the shrimp for a minute over high heat until beginning to turn pink. 


Return the vegetables to the pan with the shrimp and cook another minute. Then add the sauce, stir until thickened. Finally add the avocado chunks and heat through. Serve over brown rice.

Lucy is the author of the Key West food critic mysteries, available wherever books are sold! You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Topped Chef's Shrimp and Grits

LUCY BURDETTETopped Chef (coming next week!) involves a reality TV cooking contest in Key West. The prize is a big deal--a shot at starring in a cooking show. (Hayley Snow is a reluctant judge.) One of the contestants, Randy Thompson, is a proponent of homey Southern cooking. When the three contestants have to present their "signature" seafood dishes, Randy makes shrimp and grits. So I knew I had to make them for you!

Most southern cooks worth their collards have a recipe for shrimp and grits. The difference comes in several ways. First, the grits can be cooked in water, chicken broth, or milk, and then when cooked, cheese and or butter are mixed in. Then the shrimp are cooked with, all or some of these ingredients: bacon, tasso ham, onions, scallions, peppers, garlic, lemon, parsley, worcestershire sauce, more butter. 

I used Bob's Red Mill corn grits and even my non-grits-loving husband loved them. I also cut back on cheese and butter so these were not as intensely rich as I've had in restaurants.



5-7 shrimp per person, depending on size, peeled and deveined (Randy uses Key West pinks and so did I)
6 slices bacon, chopped
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1/2 green pepper, finely chopped
1 cup cheddar cheese
3-4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/2 lemon
1 cup cornmeal grits
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
Bring three cups of water and broth to a boil, and slowly add the grits. Reduce to low heat and simmer about 1/2 hour, whisking often to keep lumps from forming, and so it doesn't stick to the pan. (Take care because the grits will "pop" and can burn.) Mix in the cheese and 2 tablespoons butter, and set aside. 

While the grits are cooking (or even earlier,) fry the chopped bacon until crisp. Set this aside and empty most of the grease from the pan. 

Add the scallions and the pepper and cook several minutes, adding a little olive oil if needed. Scrape this out and set aside. Saute the shrimp in the same pan with a little olive oil or butter until barely pink (about 3 minutes.)  Squeeze in half the lemon and add a tablespoon butter. Scrape the vegetables back into the pan and heat it all together.

Arrange the shrimp over the grits, and garnish with parsley and bacon.Serve with green salad, or steamed spinach or asparagus. And biscuits if you need them:). This recipe served three people nicely--if you have 5 or 6 shrimp per person and a side vegetable, I think you could serve 4.


Here's Randy Thompson making his signature shrimp and grits in TOPPED CHEF which is finally, finally OUT NEXT WEEK (Oops, did I already say that?):

"He measured cornmeal into a pan of simmering chicken broth, shucked the shells off a pile of pink shrimp, and grated a mound of white cheddar cheese, all while chattering amiably about cooking and entertaining and interspersing his comments with snatches of song. And most appealing of all, half a pound of bacon spat in his frying pan, perfuming the air. The audience laughed and cheered at his antics: I couldn’t imagine that the other two would be able to match this performance.

“Every Southern chef worth his or her salt has a variation on the classic recipe for shrimp and grits,” said Randy. “And they will argue about whether the necessary secret ingredient is the bacon, the tasso ham, the green peppers, the heavy cream versus the cheese. But Key West has a supersecret weapon.” He winked and grinned. “We are so lucky on this island to have access to gorgeous local shrimp—Key West pinks, they’re called, for those of you who aren’t local.”

Hope you enjoy the dinner! We sure did. 

And don't forget to order your copy of TOPPED CHEF

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