For as long as I can remember enjoying barbequed shrimp I have, like most folks, been confused on the real Pascal's Manale recipe. The more I research it, the more confuse I become as it seems everyone including those who work there are very rigid in their opinions on the correct method and the right ingredients. Many won't say and those who do talk babble endless about what amounts to much about nothing.
Now for those of you not familiar with BBQ shrimp, it has nothing to do what so ever with barbeque as you know it. That's just a misnomer that somehow stuck. Pascale's Manale is the oldest Italian restaurant still in operation in New Orleans, uptown area on Napoleon Ave, opened in 1913
and still has one of the finest oyster bars anywhere. Opened by Frank Manale, it later fell into the hands of his nephew Pascal Radosta thus the two's name. Now, as the story goes, a customer back in 1955 asked for a shrimp dish he remembered from Chicago and Pascal whipped up what would become one of the most famous food dishes coming from New Orleans, Barbecued Shrimp.
Getting back to the recipe, as said, there are as many versions of the real recipe as there are shrimp in the ocean, well almost. Filtering through the multitude of folks giving their two-cents-worth, I have come to one conclusion; that it don't matter. You see, many critics agree better barbeque shrimp can be had than the ones claiming to be Pascal's Manale own version and any good Creole cook worth a toot can fix a good pan of barbeque shrimp.
|Pascal's Manale BBQ Shrimp|
I have made many versions of barbeque shrimp and will continue to do other ways than this one but after finally tweaking this one, by golly it is my favorite thus far. Let me say I am a firm believer in cooking shrimp with head and shell left on. It gives a much deeper flavor. However, this time I did not for I served this as an appetizer to my dinner guest, see note. The recipe is with shells on. Enjoy!
My Version of Pascal's Manale BBQ Shrimp
1 1/2 pounds (21-25 count) shrimp
5 teaspoons Manale Spice, recipe below
2 bay leaves
5 toes of garlic, pressed
1 stick of butter, melted
1/2 stick margarine, melted
2 good tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
juice of 2 lemons (5 to 6 tablespoons)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper hot sauce
1/2 cup white wine or beer
1 bu green scallions or1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
1 lemon thinly sliced for garnishment
( from Chef Mark DeFelice)
4 tablespoons black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon rosemary, optional
Combine all spice ingredients thoroughly and store in a dry, airtight container.
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
Wash the shrimp and pat dry. Place unpeeled shrimp in a large skillet or heavy roaster over medium high heat. Cook shrimp tossing occasionally until shrimp turn pink. Remove from heat and sprinkle the Manale Spice. Toss to coat and add the bay leaves.
In a bowl, mix the garlic into the melted butter and margarine. Stir in the Worcestershire, lemon juice, pepper sauce and wine. Pour over the shrimp and mix in the onions. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to medium heat and cook for about 3 minutes stirring occasionally. Cover with foil. Turn off heat in the oven and place skillet in oven for 1 hour or more to let the shrimp absorb the flavors of the sauce. Remove from the oven when you just can't stand it any longer. Lay the lemon slices over the top for garnishment.
Serve in bowls with crusty French bread on the side to soak of the sauce. I like to serve this with a salad, corn and potatoes.
Note: For appetizers, I used 51-60 count shrimp gulf white shrimp, peeled and deveined. I added the butter mixture to the pan and brought it to a boil, then added the shrimp cooking until they turned pink. Added the onions and let rest in the oven for an hour. Add the lemons right before serving as they will make the sauce bitter if cooked into it. Guest enjoyed about a cup serving portion.