Chef Leake tells us how to make BBQ shrimp, New Orleans style

Live at 9

In Memphis and the Midsouth, we know barbecue. It’s a fact but, of course Chef Steven Leake is taking that to a whole new level this morning.

We went live with Chef Leake, an instructor with Southwest Tennessee Community College.

His recipe is listed below:

Barbecue Shrimp, Abita Style: Makes 2 to 4 servings


3 sticks butter

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons onion flakes

3 tablespoons garlic powder

1 teaspoon ground cloves

1-1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon black pepper

3 tablespoons barbecue spice (such as McCormick’s or chef Paul Prudhomme’s blend)

4 teaspoons paprika

2 teaspoons ground rosemary leaves

1/4 Worcestershire sauce

Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)

2 bay leaves

1 bottle Abita Amber, at room temperature

2 teaspoons salt

5 pounds large shrimp, heads on and unpeeled


Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

While the oven is heating, combine the butter and olive oil in a baking pan large enough to accommodate the shrimp. Place the pan in the oven to allow the butter and oil to blend. Watch closely so the mixture does not burn.

Remove the pan from oven. Add onion flakes, garlic powder, cloves, cayenne, black pepper, barbecue spice, paprika, rosemary, Worcestershire, lemon juice and bay leaves. Stir to mix.

Slowly add the beer and stir until the foam subsides. Add salt. Set mixture aside to allow flavors to marry, 10 to 15 minutes.

Add shrimp and place the pan in the oven, uncovered, and bake, basting well every 10 minutes, for about 40 minutes. When there is a slight air space along the back of the shrimp and the shell has pulled away from the shrimp meat, they are ready!

Serve the shrimp in a large soup bowl with some of the sauce, accompanied by your favorite Abita beer and hot crusty French bread.

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