Indian summers and spicy shrimp.

I meant to show you this recipe before Labor Day but life, as it so frequently does, got in the way.  I went out with friends over the long weekend and got a little lot too hungover to write the post on Monday.

Then, since I work in public education, my summer was over and I went back to school on September 3rd.  The first couple of days were a whirlwind of getting things in order and seeing how much the kids have grown over the summer (some of them seem to be freakishly taller than they were last June) and I never got to post about the spicy, Creole shrimp boil that we had to honor my last weekend of Summer.

But this week, here in New Jersey, has been hotter than the entire month of August and making this summery dinner is still totally appropriate.  It’s the perfect dinner to eat outside with tons of napkins and a cold beer—a great way to languidly soak in every last bit of this hot Indian summer.

If you’ve never made spiced shrimp before, you may be surprised by how much spice goes into the pot—it’s a lot.  But don’t worry, not everything gets absorbed into the shrimp, most is left on the shells once you peel it.  The potatoes however, will be bursting with spiciness (or, to be frank, flaming hot).  If you don’t want them so spiced, you could cook the potatoes first and then add them to the pot later, but I thought they were pretty amazing, especially once they were slathered in the sweet-sour, creamy horseradish sauce.

Enjoy the last few days of this hot weather—and I hope you can stay dry if you’re on the east coast!

Shrimp Boil with Spicy Horseradish Sauce

makes one big pot//from Gourmet, August 2008

  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 5 tablespoons Creole or Cajun seasoning
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cayenne, divided
  • 2 Turkish bay leaves or 1 California
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 8 small boiling potatoes (about 2 inches)
  • 4 ears of corn, shucked and halved
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp in shell
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons bottled horseradish

Squeeze lemon juice into 4 qt water in a 6- to 8-quart pot, then stir in lemon quarters, Creole seasoning, 2 teaspoon cayenne, bay leaves, garlic, potatoes, and 2 tablespoons salt (omit salt if it is the first ingredient in seasoning).

Bring to a boil, then simmer, partially covered, until potatoes are almost tender, 10 to 12 minutes.

Increase heat to high, then add corn and simmer, partially covered, 4 minutes. Stir in shrimp and cook until just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, stir together ketchup, mayonnaise, horseradish, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cayenne.

Drain shrimp, potatoes, and corn and serve with sauce.

15 thoughts on “Indian summers and spicy shrimp.”

  1. I can’t believe that summer is essentially over. It makes me very very sad 😦

    Love the vibrancy of the shrimp and corn in this recipe. The dish you served it in looks like it has a cute pattern too.

  2. I know… boo. I want summer all over again.

    The pot that I’m using was Jim’s Russian grandma’s… and I’ve heard of other Russian grandmas having it as well, so maybe it’s a Russian design? 🙂

  3. Cool thing about being here in Atlanta is our summer will continue until Thanksgiving! Sometimes beyond.

    That’s a really good looking boil there. I think I’ll add some hot sausages for a little more spice! 🙂

  4. I love the sound of that horseradish sauce with the sweet corn and shrimps. What a lovely way to end the summer. I’m glad you found the time to post about it, how rude of life to get in the way… I hate it when that happens!

  5. I love dishes that have things in it you can’t eat entirely, such as cobs of corn. Reminds me of that Mexican soup, Cocido I think it’s called. Sounds great!

  6. This sounds delicious- spicy but delicious.

    We have been the opposite, weather wise here in the Midwest- September came and the cooler weather tagged right along. I would love a shot or two at Indian summer right about now!

  7. You’d rather worry about the kids than blog? Get your priorities straight!
    Sounds like my kind of dish and believe me when I say that pouring lots of spices into a pot is something I enjoy doing.

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