Shrimp Viala in Crawfish Tasso Butter

This unique shrimp presentation was designed here at Lafitte's Landing Restaurant for use during the height of the white shrimp season. At this time of year, shrimp are plentiful and we only select ten to twelve count shrimp for this recipe.


  • 3 dozen ten to twelve count head-on shrimp
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp Creole mustard
  • 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat
  • 1 tbsp dry sherry
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup bechamel sauce
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onions
  • 3/4 cup seasoned Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup finely diced celery
  • 1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper
  • salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 2 tbsps finely diced garlic
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 cup water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place shrimp right side up on cutting board. Using a sharp paring knife, cut through the tail shell from the top of the tail to the bottom of the flipper, making sure not to separate head from tail. Using your thumbs, open the tail flat, remove the vein and gently pry the meat away from the shell, leaving it intact at the head. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the above ingredients except crabmeat, salt and pepper and the last three ingredients. Using a large spoon, blend until all ingredients are well incorporated. Gently fold in crabmeat being careful not to break lumps. Season to taste using salt and pepper. Stuff tail with generous portion of crabmeat stuffing. Once stuffed, the tail should lay flat on a baking pan. Place stuffed shrimp on a large baking sheet and drizzle with butter and sherry. Put water into the bottom of the baking pan and place on center oven rack. Bake until stuffing is golden brown, approximately fifteen to twenty minutes. Place two ounces of crawfish butter in center of plate and top with six shrimp.


  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • 1/2 cup fresh crawfish tails
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup diced tasso
  • 1 ounce dry white wine
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup diced tomato
  • 1/4 pound unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
  • salt and cracked black pepper to taste

In a heavy bottom saute pan, heat butter over medium high heat. Add all ingredients up to and including the thyme. Saute until crawfish and tasso are cooked thoroughly and vegetables are wilted, approximately ten minutes. Deglaze with white wine, reduce slightly and add heavy whipping cream. Continue to cook until volume of cream is reduced to one half and thickened. Slowly melt butter, a few pieces at a time, stirring constantly until all is incorporated. Remove from heat and season to taste using salt and pepper. All ingredients may be strained from the sauce or allowed to remain depending on preference. Hold warm until serving. YIELDS: 1 1/2 cups

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