Long before lake and gulf shrimp were available to Louisianans, river shrimp were in great supply. Many dishes featured this unique ingredient, but none is more famous than the Creole Style Sweet Corn and Shrimp Soup. The marriage of these items came about because of our friendship with the native American Indians and their gift of corn.
Mamere (grandmother) made the best corn and shrimp soup, period! Many days my brothers and I would sit around her large kitchen table peeling river shrimp and pulling the silk from the freshly picked corn. Using an "Old Hickory" knife, she would remove the kernels from the cobs and then the secret to her tasty recipe was revealed. She would boil the corn cobs with the shells of the river shrimp in a large pot, seasoned with yellow onions, celery, garlic and one hot pepper. The aroma was incredible. This secret stock was then strained through her old bent colander. The results of her labor still linger on in my memory, so many years later.
- 3 cups whole kernel corn
- 2 pounds freshwater or other shrimp
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1/4 cup diced garlic
- 1 cup diced tomatoes, seeded
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 2 1/2 quarts shellfish stock
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions
- 1/2 cup chopped parsley
- salt and cracked pepper to taste
- Louisiana Gold Pepper Sauce to taste
In a two gallon stock pot, melt butter over medium high heat. Add corn, onions, celery, bell peppers and garlic. Saute three to five minutes or until vegetables are wilted. Add tomatoes, blend well into the vegetable mixture and add flour. Using a wire whisk, whip constantly until white roux is achieved. Do not brown. Add tomato sauce and stock, one ladle at a time, stirring constantly until all is incorporated. Bring to a low boil and reduce to simmer. Add half of the shrimp and cook for thirty minutes. Add remaining shrimp, cream, green onions and parsley. Allow the shrimp to cook approximately ten minutes. Season to taste using salt, pepper and Louisiana Gold.