Cooking Club: Hayley Goes It Alone

My sister’s friend Hayley is a Texan trapped in the oblong prison that is Long Island. I don’t know why she landed there. My best guess that she got drunk and woke up there one morning (they do everything bigger in Texas, or so I’m told). Anyhow, Hayley emailed me the other day with news that she struck out on her own during her latest cooking endeavor:

So I cooked dinner solo tonight, and this is my second time making this exact meal. The first time I forgot to take pictures, so I made up for it this time. I think if you are looking for something to blog about, this would be a great candidate. Extremely spicy, cajun style shrimp with linguine. I don’t have Emeril‘s essence seasoning, so I mixed all the ingredients myself. Drank water (I have a cold, and was hoping this would open up my sinuses).

Emeril’s Essence seasoning line is okay. The primary seasoning is not much different than the Dinosaur Barbque, Tony Chachere or Zatarain’s creole/cajun seasonings. He has a handful of other spice blends, but the Essence is the spice that earned the constant screams of BAM during his short, but entertaining run of live-to-tape shows on Food Network. Anyhow, Hayley gets points for eschewing commercial brands and making her own blend.

I was always surprised at the Emeril’s meteoric rise and disappearance. He was clearly charismatic and went from his 30-minute studio cooking show to a 60-minute show to sitcom star/morning show guest to anonymity pretty quickly. One of the things I disliked about Emeril’s recipes is the less than attainable quality. There’s always some sort of ingredient that requires a trip to Dean & DeLuca or a special-order meat supplier. This one seems a little more in reach.

Emeril’s Shrimp and Pasta with Chilis, Garlic, Lemon and Green Onions

  • 20 to 25 (1 1/4 pounds) large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound cooked linguini
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion, tops only
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

Toss the shrimp in a medium bowl with the Essence.

Place the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large 14-inch skillet over high heat. Add the shrimp to the pan, spreading them evenly in 1 layer. Cook for 2 minutes then turn them to the other side. Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 30 seconds.

Add the wine, lemon juice, lemon zest and remaining 2 tablespoons of the butter and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Season the shrimp with the salt and pepper and add the pasta, crushed red pepper flakes and green onions, tossing to coat well. Remove the skillet from the heat, add the parsley, and toss to combine. Serve hot.

Emeril’s ESSENCE Creole Seasoning

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Makes 2/3 cup.

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