Excerpted with permission from Unexpected Cajun Kitchen by Leigh Ann Chatagnier. Copyright 2018 by Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
"The Unexpected Cajun Kitchen" is a cookbook that draws inspiration from classic recipes down in the bayou and transforms them into modern-day dishes for all to enjoy.
These recipes have a touch of nostalgia while using fresh, locally grown ingredients native to Louisiana—but can be found anywhere, if you know where to look.
The dishes are interesting and easy enough for anyone to make at home. Whether you are a beginner in the kitchen, or an old pro, you will love whipping up new takes on the Cajun tradition.
A fusion of deconstructed Cajun delicacies and traditional flavors, The Unexpected Cajun Kitchen is a necessity for any season.
Gather everyone around the table and celebrate food, life, and love with a fresh and unexpected home-cooked meal.
Recipe: Shrimp and Creamy Gouda Grits
4 slices bacon
10 cups water
1 tbsp. + 1 tsp. salt
2 cups old-fashioned grits
11/2 cups smoked gouda cheese, grated
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tsp. cracked black pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/4 tsp. red chili flakes
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 tbsp. butter
juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. parsley
4 green onions
1. Chop bacon into small pieces. Sauté bacon in a large pan until crispy. Remove from pan.
2. Bring 9 cups of water to a boil, and add 1 tablespoon of salt.
3. Whisk in grits to prevent lumps and reduce heat to simmer. Cover and let cook for 10 minutes or until grits are tender.
4. Add cheese and 2 tablespoons of butter to the grits, along with 1 teaspoon pepper, and stir until butter and cheese have melted. At this time, taste and add more salt and pepper if desired. Turn heat to low and cover.
5. Add minced garlic to bacon grease and cook for 1 minute.
6. Add shrimp in a single layer and season with salt, pepper, and red chili flakes, and cook for 2 minutes per side until shrimp are pink.
7. Remove shrimp. Add 1/4 cup of wine to deglaze pan and reduce for a couple of minutes.
8. Add shrimp and bacon to the pan again and add 1 tablespoon of butter, lemon juice, and parsley.
9. Toss the shrimp with the sauce, serve over grits, and top with green onions.