I have a certain ritual reserved for Football Day, that magical day each week in the fall when I get to watch Virginia Tech or another favored team play the noble game of Football. The ritual involves, usually, a beer or three, chips and salsa, hummus and rice crackers and most important of all: buffalo wings.
I’ve gotten wings down to a science, fried just so long in peanut oil, not vegetable oil, for that extra crispness. Sauced using a special blend of off the shelf sauces I keep in a secret location. Dipped in a nice, chunky bleu cheese dressing… Mmmm, delicious!
And today would have been the same, were it not for a chance encounter at Bella Donna Pizzaria the other night when Dana and I went out for some delicious Italian. Turns out that Al, the Shrimp Guy, was in town with another load of massive Gulf shrimp, fresh from the docks.
As we were headed out, Al and Donna offered some shrimp that Al had cooked up on the fly in a manner I’d not tried before. It’s called Barbecue shrimp, and as Al pointed out, has nothing to do with Barbecues as we think of them. His version was so good that when Football Day came this week, I decided to try some for myself instead. So here’s the recipe I made up based on some Googling and learning that there is no actual recipe, everyone has their own.
- 2 pounds jumbo or large shrimp, fresh, shell on, not frozen
- 1 stick of real, salted butter, not that margarine crap
- 1/2 bottle of beer (I used a Chimay Trappiste Ale)
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 teaspoons Cayenne pepper
- 3 teaspoons basil leaves
- 2 teaspoons Old Bay
- Tobasco to taste
- Rinse off shrimp and pat dry
- Melt butter in a large skillet on medium high heat
- Add rest of ingredients and mix well
- Stir constantly until mix starts to boil
- Add shrimp to mix
- Cook shirmp until good and pink, about 4 – 5 minutes per side.
- Remove shrimp and place in a large, wide bowl (think Pasta bowl)
- Continue stirring mix until about half the liquid remains
- Pour mix over shrimp, let them cool just a bit, peel, eat and enjoy!
And that’s just one of literally thousands of variations, and it was delicious 🙂
Safety Note: I strongly advise that, when eating, you be careful when peeling shrimp. I accidentally squirted some of the mix into my eye while peeling one particularly fat shrimp, and given the amount of lemon and hot pepper in the juice, that’s a rather uncomfortable experience, to say the least..