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Ernest's-style Orleans Fried Shrimp and Sauce

Ingredients:

  • Jumbo shrimp, butterflied (instructions below)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Yellow corn flour
  • Salt and pepper
  • Vegetable oil

Sauce Ingredients:

  • Hellmann's or homemade mayonnaise
  • Louisiana mustard (such as Zatarain's)
  • Freshly prepared horseradish
  • Fresh celery with leaves, finely chopped
  • Fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • Fresh garlic, finely chopped

Preparation:

To butterfly shrimp: Peel off shell, leaving tail on. With a small sharp knife, make a shallow cut down the center of the back, devein and wash. Place shrimp, cut-side up on a chopping block and deepen cut to split shrimp but not cutting completely through, leaving the tail intact. Shrimp should now open almost flat. Dry between paper towels.

To fry shrimp: Heat a good grade of oil (Kraft's, etc.) to 350°s; F, using a deep fat fryer or heavy bottomed, fairly deep sauté pan with a frying thermometer. Dip shrimp in beaten egg, then in corn flour. (Corn flour may be purchased at our local fish markets.) Shake off excess flour. Shrimp may be prepared for frying earlier in the day and refrigerated if desired.

When the oil has reached 350°s; F, drop in the shrimp, a few at a time. As soon as the shrimp come to the top of the oil, remove immediately from pan. "Do not let them dance on the top," is Ernest's prime admonition. "The secret of good seafood is not to overcook." Place on paper toweling and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Serve immediately with Ernest's famous sauce.

To make sauce: Mix equal amounts of Hellmann's mayonnaise or homemade mayonnaise, Louisiana mustard and freshly prepared horseradish. With a French chef's knife, chop the celery, parsley and garlic. Add to mayonnaise mixture, stir well and refrigerate.

Makes 1

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