Etouffée means "smothered," as any fan of Cajun cooking knows, and Joshua Marks didn't skip any of the classic vegetables in the sauce that smothered his shrimp. This is a finely honed version of the traditional preparation, and even though a stick of butter may seem generous for a pound of shrimp… well, the dish would miss it if you used less. To get the roux to a medium golden color and cook it properly, you need this volume of butter and flour. And it's true to the spirit of generations of generous, open-handed Cajun cooks, who aren't known for starting a dish with merely a tablespoon or two of butter!
Once the wine and stock have gone in, the sauce simmers until it's thick and smooth. At this point, your étouffée is pretty much ready, so don't add the shrimp until the rice is cooked and your guests are seated at the table. It doesn't take long to smother the shrimp once they go in.
- 1/2 Cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 Cup all-purpose flour
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 Vidalia onion, diced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 Cup white wine
- 4 Cups chicken stock
- 1 Tablespoon Cajun seasoning
- 1 Pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 3 1/4 Cups water
- 2 Cups jasmine rice
- Chopped cilantro, for garnish
Melt the butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the flour and whisk to combine. Constantly whisk the roux, being careful not to let it burn, until a medium brown color is reached, 12-15 minutes.
Add the celery, bell peppers, onion, jalapeño, and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the wine and cook for 1-2 more minutes. Add the stock and Cajun seasoning. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the shrimp and cook until it is cooked through, 4-5 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring the water to a boil in a medium-sized pot. Add the rice and stir. Cover, reduce the heat, and cook until the rice is done, 15 minutes. Mound the rice in the center of a plate, and pour the shrimp mixture all around, garnishing with the cilantro.