Comfort Food / Entrees / Healthy Choices / Low Fat / Quick and Easy / Rice / See Hatsie Cook / Spicy / Vegetables / Weeknight Meals

Cook: Shrimp and Rice with Andouille Creole Gravy

This andouille creole gravy is what dreams are made of.  I want it on all things, always.
K and I have a running joke about andouille sausage that consists of nothing more than laughing at how silly the word andouille sounds when you say it as a gold-rush-era prospector would.  That’s about all the explanation I can give you because, well, it’s just not that funny.
We went to Erie, PA for the weekend back in May.  We went to dinner the first night and one of the specials was a seafood dish with a creole gravy that was studded with andouille.  As the waiter was explaining this, he said the word andouille and we immediately looked at each other and laughed.  He stopped and kind of smiled, then said something about it not being that spicy, and then he pawned us off on one of his colleagues.  I felt terrible, because he clearly thought we were laughing at him, but how do you explain to someone that you’re not laughing at him, but at a word that really isn’t that funny?  You don’t.  You just move on.  Get in and get out.

Later that night I stepped on some rogue salad dressing in the middle of the dining room, slipped violently, all flailing arms, frizzy hair, and bruised knees, so if he thought we were laughing at him, the scores were definitely evened.  I’ll never be cool, will I?
I recently saw andouille sausage in my grocery store and I remembered that waiter, the bruised knees, and how absolutely delicious the special was that night.  I brought it home, thawed some shrimp, and made dinner.  It was incredible.  Slightly spicy, smoky, and deceptively light–this dinner absolutely blew my mind.
No rogue salad dressing or violent falls, either.  So, that’s a success.
The gravy coats the shrimp and soaks into the rice and gives the whole plate this smoky, vibrant flavor.
The shrimp and gravy are incredibly satisfying yet actually pretty light.  The gravy isn’t thickened with cream and relies heavily on the andouille sausage for flavor, and a little goes a long way.
This is so simple and so humble (shrimp, rice, vegetables–pretty basic!) but completely blew my mind. That little bit of sausage packs a punch.
It’s pretty, it’s tasty, and it comes with a story.  (Story optional).
Here’s the recipe.
Shrimp and Rice with Andouille Creole Gravy
  • 1/4 pound andouille sausage, diced
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 3 ribs celery, diced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Cooked rice
  1. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat.  Add andouille sausage and let it crisp and render, about 5 minutes.  Stir occasionally so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom.  Once it is crisp, add the vegetables and let them cook for 5 minutes more, until soft but not brown.  Season with cayenne, mustard powder, and paprika and a little bit of salt and pepper.  (Andouille is very salty so go easy!).
  2. Add flour and stir to coat all of the vegetables and andouille.  Pour in chicken stock, scraping the bottom of the pot as you pour.  Stir so that there aren’t any lumps and then bring mixture to a boil.  Reduce heat to a simmer and let simmer for 10-20 minutes, until thick.  If it gets too thick, add some stock to thin it out.
  3. Season shrimp with salt, pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice.  Heat remaining olive oil over medium heat in a skillet and cook the shrimp on each side for about 2 minutes, or until pink.  Be careful to not overcook the shrimp.
  4. Assemble the dish by adding about 1/2 cup of cooked rice to a plate and topping with shrimp.  Ladle the gravy over the top.  Serve immediately.

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