As either a cup-sized portion or a hearty bowl, this recipe will serve a hungry group of fishermen.
Recipe by: George Graham - AcadianaTable.com
Serves: 6 to 8
4 pounds large fresh Gulf shrimp, head-on
1 gallon water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup diced yellow onions
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced mild smoked pork sausage
1 tablespoon minced garlic
½ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1½ cups diced green onion tops, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ cup dry white wine
2 cups whole milk
2 cups cooked red potatoes
1 cup yellow corn
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Dash of hot sauce
2 pounds (6 fillets) fresh speckled trout, cut into chunks
Peel the shrimp and refrigerate. Add the heads and shells to a large pot. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Strain the shrimp stock and reserve.
In a medium pot over medium heat, add the butter. When the butter is sizzling, add the onions, celery, and diced sausage. Cook until the onions turn translucent and then add the garlic, parsley, and 1 cup of green onions. Stir for 5 minutes to combine.
Add the flour to the vegetables and stir continuously until the flour cooks slightly to make a blond roux. Add the wine and 4 cups of reserved shrimp stock. Continue stirring on low heat until the mixture thickens.
Add the milk along with the cooked potatoes and corn. Continue cooking on low heat for 30 minutes until it reaches a thick chowder consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Add hot sauce to taste.
Add the shrimp and speckled trout. Stir until all the seafood is submerged and let simmer for 15 minutes or until the seafood is cooked.
Ladle the chowder into bowls and sprinkle with the remaining green onion tops. Serve with hot French bread and extra hot sauce on the side.
At the fishing camp, I use live shrimp from my bait well and parboil them to make them easier to peel. But in this recipe, I am using fresh shell-on Gulf shrimp. You can use already peeled shrimp, but the shells and heads are the keys to a good stock - crucial to the flavor of this recipe. Smoked sausage adds a depth of unexpected flavor to this dish, but it can be eliminated if you are not a sausage fan.