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Everyone will think you’re a seafood master with this easy recipe

New Orleans GW Fins co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn shares his seafood secrets

HOUSTON – GW Fins, recognized as New Orleans’ premiere fine dining seafood restaurant, ranked #7 in the Top 10 Best Fine Dining Restaurants In the Country in TripAdvisor’s Travelers Choice Awards. The renowned restaurant also earned a spot in OpenTable’s 100 Best Restaurants In America. Humble and modest co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn majorly contributed to the accolades.

New Orleans restaurant GW Fins Co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn helps home cooks master seafood in his book "The Deep End of Flavor."
New Orleans restaurant GW Fins Co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn helps home cooks master seafood in his book "The Deep End of Flavor." (©HANNAFOTO LLC - all rights reserved)

“Seafood really is the easiest protein to cook,” said Flynn. “If you’ve got the equipment and skillset to fry an egg, you can cook a piece of fish in about the same amount of time.”

Dubbed the “fishmonger czar of the Gulf region” by the Wall Street Journal, Flynn took his passion for seafood in his owns hands – literally. He became scuba certified and has often speared fish to be prepared at his restaurant. After overhearing guests talk about how they loved to try unique varieties of fish at GW Fins but were too afraid to cook seafood at home, Flynn decided to write his book “The Deep End of Flavor.”

New Orleans restaurant GW Fins Co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn helps home cooks master seafood in his book "The Deep End of Flavor."
New Orleans restaurant GW Fins Co-owner and chef Tenney Flynn helps home cooks master seafood in his book "The Deep End of Flavor." (©HANNAFOTO LLC - all rights reserved)

“This book is not a chefy book. It’s a technique book for the home cook,” said Flynn. “I sign it sometimes ‘Don’t fear the fish’ because so many people are afraid of cooking fish at home.”

Watch the video above to see Chef Tenney Flynn’s complete interview and a demo of the recipe below.

SHRIMP SAUTÉED IN BBQ BUTTER & GOAT CHEESE GRITS

Chef Tenney Flynn prepares his take on shrimp & grits with BBQ butter, wild-caught American shrimp and hominy grits with goat cheese.
Chef Tenney Flynn prepares his take on shrimp & grits with BBQ butter, wild-caught American shrimp and hominy grits with goat cheese. (KPRC)

Serves 4 as a main dish

BBQ BUTTER

  • 4 tbs. plus 4 sticks (1 lb.) salted butter, softened & divided
  • 6 tbs. minced shallots
  • 6 tbs. minced garlic
  • 2 tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tbs. finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tbs. paprika
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper

Melt 4 tbs. butter in a small sauté pan on medium-low. Add the shallots and garlic; sauté until soft but not browned. A lid helps this process so they steam a little while cooking. Spread this mixture out on a plate and refrigerate.

Place the remaining butter in the bowl of an electric mixer and whip until light and fluffy. (You can do this with a wooden spoon if you soften the butter to room temperature first.)

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add lemon juice, rosemary, paprika, thyme, Worcestershire sauce, salt, black pepper, and cayenne, along with the cooled shallot mixture. Whip on high for another minute. Divide mixture in half, cutting half of it into chunks; set aside.

Save the other half of mixture for later use by rolling it into a 2-inch-diameter log in waxed paper or plastic wrap. Refrigerate or label, date, and freeze up to six months.

SEASONED SHRIMP

  • 2 lbs. (16–20 count or larger) wild- caught American shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tsp. Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Magic Seasoning Blends Shrimp Magic or Home Creole Seasoning
  • 2 tbs. olive or canola oil
  • 2 tbs. salted butter
  • 1⁄2 c. amber beer, plus more, as needed (we use Abita)
  • 1⁄2 recipe of BBQ Butter

Season the shrimp lightly with the Shrimp Magic seasoning. Set a large, heavy skillet or sauté pan on medium-high heat. When hot, add the oil, then the butter. When the butter foams, add the seasoned shrimp and sauté quickly for two minutes. Turn and continue cooking for one minute.

Add the beer and reduce by half. Turn down the heat to medium-low. Make sure there is enough reduced liquid to keep the temperature at a simmer. (If it’s all cooked off, the heat will rise quickly, and the compound butter will break when you stir it in.)

Whisk all the chunks of BBQ Butter into the simmering beer and stir until the mixture has a creamy consistency.

GOAT CHEESE GRITS

Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

  • 4 c. water
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 c. old-fashioned grits
  • 3 tbs. salted butter
  • 6 tbs. soft goat cheese

Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan, add the salt, and whisk in the grits. When it returns to a boil, lower the heat and cook about 20 minutes, scraping the bottom and sides of the pan from time to time. Low heat is essential for safety since this mixture is like sticky boiling lava. When all the water is absorbed, remove from the heat and stir in the butter and goat cheese until melted.

Put a big scoop of grits in the center of large warmed bowls and divide the shrimp and sauce equally on top. Garnish with parsley and serve with bread.

To connect with Chef Tenney Flynn, visit his website here.


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