GINNA PARSONS: New Orleans shrimp dish worth wait

By Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal

In the early 1990s, our friends Pat and Monia Beasley took a train down to New Orleans and ate in a restaurant called Pascal’s Manale. They ordered – and fell in love with – the house specialty: barbecue shrimp.
Once back home in Tupelo, they tried to recreate this succulent dish. They found a recipe in “Southern Sideboards” for Shrimp Manale, which had shrimp and butter, but few of the spices they remembered.
Later, they would find two recipes on the Internet for Pascal’s Manale BBQ Shrimp, which were closer to what they recalled eating.
So Pat took the best from all and came up with his family’s version of the dish, which they simply call Pascal’s Manale.
I’ve been hearing them talk about this dish for years and finally, on Sunday evening, Charlie and I were invited to their home to try it for ourselves.
It was worth the wait.
Pat bought jumbo shrimp – there were maybe 14 or 15 in a pound – so each of us ate only six or seven shrimp. Of course, it doesn’t take much shrimp to fill you up when you’re sopping up the sauce with hunks of crusty French bread. I provided the Caesar salad to round out the meal.
I’m not sure how this dish will fit in with my New Year’s resolution to eat better in 2013. But because it is such a special meal, I don’t see it popping up on the dinner menu but maybe once a year.

Pascal’s Manale BBQ Shrimp
11⁄4 sticks butter
1⁄2 cup canola oil
1⁄4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
11⁄2 teaspoons Zatarain’s liquid crab boil
1 to 2 cloves garlic, crushed
Tabasco hot sauce to taste
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
11⁄4 teaspoons basil
11⁄4 teaspoons thyme
1⁄2 teaspoon ground rosemary
2 pounds (10- to 15-count) unpeeled shrimp
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt butter with oil in a saucepan. Add remaining ingredients, except shrimp, and simmer briefly. Place shrimp on a baking pan and pour the sauce over it, stirring well. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, turning once. Serve with crusty bread for sopping up the sauce and a salad.
Serves 4.
Ginna Parsons is the Daily Journal’s food/home/garden editor.