- 1 pound medium-size shrimp, tails on, rinsed, patted dry, and peeled
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons hot pepper oil
- 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
Season the shrimp with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1 tablespoon of the pepper oil. Layer the shrimp in a concentric circle in the bottom of a cold 10 to 12-inch saute pan, leaving about a 1-inch space between the shrimp and the rim of the pan. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons pepper oil in this space around the inside of the pan. Sprinkle the popcorn kernels into the oil. Cut a piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil about 14 inches long. Place the foil over the pan and press it down firmly over the shrimp, oil, and popcorn. Crimp the foil securely around the edges of the skillet. Place the pan over medium-high heat.
Cook until it begins to sizzle, about 2 minutes. Carefully remove the shrimp and place in a large bowl. Recover the pan and continue to cook for about 2 1/2 minutes more. The corn should begin popping. Start shaking the pan at 30-second intervals. The popcorn will continue to pop for about another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat. Let sit for about 30 seconds and allow the corn to completely finish popping.
Very carefully remove the foil because of the steam. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, and toss it with the remaining teaspoon salt and the Essence.
Essence (Emeril's 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 leaf oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.
Yield: about 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.