So, I have a bud by the name of Carol. Now, Carol doesn't only lead me to some great authors because she is my library's director, but also to some great cookbooks because we both enjoy cooking.
I must admit that Rachel Ray has never been a favorite of mine, but Carol loaned me her book, Look and Cook. I LOVED THAT COOKBOOK! Rachel had some of the freshest and most unique recipes in that book, including this one.
Now, I must admit that this recipe took a bit longer and was more involved than what I wanted in my weeknight meal, but it was FANTASTIC. It reminded me a bit of a gumbo. I loved that it warmed up nicely the next day for lunch, as well.
Another note: Regarding the shrimp, Rachel calls for the shell to be off the shrimp. I like my shell intact. I do have a reason for the method to my madness. During the cooking process, shrimp can go from delicioso to disgusting and rubbery in two shakes of a lamb's tail. I find that in having the shell on, it gives enough room for a slight mistake in cooking. While even I will admit that it was a pain in the rear-end to try to eat them, I was happier with the results, especially during the reheating portion of our lunches.
So, here we go!:
2 t. jarred garlic
8 celery stalks, chopped
1 large green pepper, seeded and chopped
1 large red onion, chopped
2 T. finely chopped FRESH thyme leaves
4 T. butter
1. 5 cups uncooked white rice
2.5 cups chicken broth (I actually took this to 3.5 cups)
1 Jalapeno pepper thinly sliced
20 cherry tomatoes sliced in half
2 limes, juiced independently (very important)
2 T. olive oil
3 lbs large shrimp, peeled and deveined TAIL ON ( see my note)
1 T. Old Bay seafood seasoning
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup hot sauce
1 bottle beer
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced on an angle
1) In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, celery, bell peppers, onions and thyme.
2) In a large pot melt one third of the above veggies and 1 T. of the butter. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the veggies soften. Add the rice and "brown" for 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth, SIMMER for about 20 minutes.
3) To the remining veggies above, add the jalapeno, tomatoes, lime juice of ONE LIME and salt. Set aside.
4) Heat the olive oil in another large pan. Add the shrimp, Old Bay, Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. Cook for 2 minutes.
5) Add beer and SIMMER for 5 minutes.
6) Remove from heat. Add in remaining 3 T. of butter chopped up, the scallions and the remaining lime juice. Cook only until butter is melted. This should take one minute.
7) To serve, place a scoop of rice on the platter. Top with rice/sauce. Then, top with salsa.