Shrimp and Gumbo Spirals

 Gumbo, after all, is another name for okra, one of my favorite vegetables, and as it is being supplied by our CSA, on a fairly regular basis, we are eating it more often.  But, it was those gumbo spices of  hearty soup/stew fame that inspired me here.  The red pepper flakes, thyme, oregano, basil and garlic, the shrimp stock, butter, wine, and shrimpies, oh yes. 

I decided to make a shrimp stock for this dish.  That's pepper on the cooking stock, not little bugs.  Just so you know.  Reserve all your shells, heads, whatever, and add a bit of minced carrot, celery and onion, salt and pepper.  Cover with water and simmer about 30 minutes.  Then, strain and add about a 1/2 cup of white wine.  Now, reduce the heck out of it while you're assembling the rest of the dish.

 Shrimp and Gumbo Spirals

for 2-3 servings

1 package (about 7) medium shrimp
okra, about 1 lb., cut into fat slices
1/2 cup shrimp stock (see above)
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 shallots, minced
1 good sized sprig of thyme
2 tablespoons minced oregano (I have the thick fleshed tropical one)
1/2 teaspoon or so of salt
red pepper flakes, a couple shakes to taste
1/4 cup parsley or basil, sliced (can be added at the end)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 package pasta spirals (I used brown rice ones)

Firstly, make the shrimp stock, then when you have added your wine to the strained stock, let it reduce on a back burner.  Get your pasta water boiling. 

When all your vegetables and herbs are minced and chopped, heat a thick-bottomed skillet over high (I've been reading The Babbo Cookbook), add in the olive oil and get it about smoking (oh horrors), then toss in the shallots and garlic.  Cook a minute or so, then throw in the okra and herbs.

Meanwhile, pasta may need to be tossed into the water (depending on the type you're using and how long it needs to cook).

 Let things frazzle a bit, then stir around until the okra is getting browned on some edges, and stir madly until the okra is about done. The vegetables should be a nice caramel brown.  Now throw in your shrimps, toss about until pink, and add the reduced stock.  Add salt, red pepper to taste and lemon juice.  Cook only til the shrimps are just done.  Turn off the heat and add in the butter, swirling in 1/2 teaspoonfuls at a time to create an emulsion.  Throw in the drained pasta and stir briefly.  Add extra pasta water if needed.

Just a little green salad is all you need add to this; trust me, gumbo awesomeness with pasta.  I'm sending it off to our weekly potluck, Presto Pasta Nights, hosted this round by Tigerfish of Teczape, so watch for an appetizingly tempting round-up after Friday.


Ruth Daniels said...

I've never been a big okra fan, but I think this dish will convert me. Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Night. And thanks for the tip on making shrimp stock. I'll be sure to add the wine!

Claudia said...

Thanks Ruth, I think a lot of people are put off by the sliminess, but that completely disappears when okra is cooked enough.

nico. said...

shrimp stock! that is amazing!

Debinhawaii said...

What a great pasta dish with the flavors of gumbo. I always save my shrimp shells to make stock--will have to try the white wine too. ;-)

Katerina said...

This is such a unique combination of flavors. I love the herbs you put in the stock too.