Mom Duke’s Shrimp


This is a tribute to my own mother, Jewel Robinson, and her supercharged version of the shrimp that I grew up eating, which consisted of peeling and eating the shrimp. The irresistible flavour and silky texture of the dish, in addition to the well-known BBQ prawns from New Orleans, served as a source of inspiration for me. The combination of Worcestershire sauce, lager, white wine, and butter – an excessive amount of butter — results in a sauce that is wonderfully fragrant and shimmering, and it is reminiscent of the seaside side of a conventional barbecue. I like to serve it with rice and French bread that has been torn, but it may be served with anything that can soak up all of that delicious sauce.

In the realm of culinary delights, few dishes possess the charm and flavor profile quite like Mom Duke’s Shrimp. This iconic Southern dish, with its roots entrenched deep in the bayous of Louisiana, has captivated palates and hearts alike for generations. But what is the story behind this beloved dish? Join me on a flavorful journey as we uncover the history, ingredients, and preparation of Mom Duke’s Shrimp.

The History:
To truly appreciate Mom Duke’s Shrimp, one must delve into its rich history. The origins of this dish can be traced back to the Cajun and Creole cultures of Louisiana, where seafood reigns supreme. Legend has it that Mom Duke, a skilled home cook with a passion for creating delectable dishes, crafted the recipe many moons ago. Drawing inspiration from the abundance of fresh shrimp harvested from the nearby Gulf of Mexico, Mom Duke set out to create a dish that would tantalize the taste buds and warm the soul.

The Ingredients:
Central to the allure of Mom Duke’s Shrimp are the carefully selected ingredients that come together to create a symphony of flavors. At its core, this dish features plump, succulent shrimp, sourced fresh from the waters of the Gulf. These shrimp serve as the star of the show, their natural sweetness complemented by a medley of spices and aromatics.

In addition to the shrimp, Mom Duke’s recipe calls for a blend of traditional Southern ingredients, including:

1. Cajun seasoning: A fiery blend of spices that adds depth and complexity to the dish.
2. Holy Trinity: A combination of onions, bell peppers, and celery, sautéed until tender and fragrant.
3. Garlic: A staple in Cajun and Creole cuisine, garlic lends its pungent flavor to the dish, enhancing its overall richness.
4. Worcestershire sauce: A dash of this savory condiment adds a hint of umami and depth to the sauce.
5. Butter: Because, as any true Southerner will tell you, butter makes everything better.

The Preparation:
Now that we’ve acquainted ourselves with the key ingredients, let’s explore the art of preparing Mom Duke’s Shrimp. While the recipe itself may vary slightly from household to household, the essence remains the same: to create a dish that is both comforting and flavorful.

1. Begin by melting a generous knob of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Once the butter is sizzling, add the holy trinity—onions, bell peppers, and celery—and sauté until softened.
2. Next, add minced garlic to the skillet, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Allow the garlic to become fragrant, infusing the vegetables with its savory essence.
3. Once the vegetables are tender and aromatic, it’s time to add the star of the show: the shrimp. Toss the shrimp in Cajun seasoning, ensuring that each morsel is coated in the spicy blend.
4. Cook the shrimp until they turn pink and opaque, taking care not to overcook them. Overcooked shrimp can quickly become tough and rubbery, so keep a close eye on them as they cook.
5. To finish the dish, add a splash of Worcestershire sauce to the skillet, stirring to combine. This will add a subtle tanginess to the dish, balancing out the richness of the butter and spices.
6. Once everything is well combined and heated through, it’s time to serve up Mom Duke’s Shrimp. Whether enjoyed over a bed of fluffy rice or alongside crusty French bread, this dish is sure to delight even the most discerning of palates.

In the world of Southern cuisine, Mom Duke’s Shrimp stands as a testament to the region’s rich culinary heritage. With its tantalizing blend of flavors and comforting aroma, this iconic dish has earned its rightful place at the table of countless families across the South and beyond. So the next time you find yourself craving a taste of the bayou, why not whip up a batch of Mom Duke’s Shrimp? After all, there’s nothing quite like the magic of Southern cooking to warm the heart and soothe the soul.



1. **What is Mom Duke’s Shrimp?**
Mom Duke’s Shrimp is a classic Southern dish originating from Louisiana, featuring plump shrimp cooked in a savory and spicy sauce.

2. **Who is Mom Duke?**
Mom Duke is a legendary figure in the realm of Southern cooking, often associated with creating the original recipe for Mom Duke’s Shrimp.

3. **What makes Mom Duke’s Shrimp unique?**
What sets Mom Duke’s Shrimp apart is its blend of traditional Southern ingredients, including Cajun seasoning, holy trinity vegetables, and a touch of Worcestershire sauce, resulting in a dish that is both flavorful and comforting.

4. **Can I use frozen shrimp for Mom Duke’s Shrimp?**
While fresh shrimp is preferred for optimal flavor and texture, frozen shrimp can be used as a substitute if fresh shrimp is not available. Be sure to thaw the shrimp completely before cooking.

5. **Is Mom Duke’s Shrimp spicy?**
The level of spiciness in Mom Duke’s Shrimp can be adjusted according to personal preference by varying the amount of Cajun seasoning used. It typically has a moderate level of heat, but you can increase or decrease the spice level to suit your taste.

6. **What can I serve with Mom Duke’s Shrimp?**
Mom Duke’s Shrimp pairs well with a variety of sides, including rice, pasta, crusty French bread, or steamed vegetables. The choice of accompaniments is flexible and can be tailored to your liking.

7. **Can I make Mom Duke’s Shrimp ahead of time?**
While Mom Duke’s Shrimp is best enjoyed fresh, you can prepare certain components ahead of time, such as chopping the vegetables or marinating the shrimp. However, it is recommended to cook the shrimp just before serving to maintain its optimal texture and flavor.

8. **Can I substitute the holy trinity vegetables?**
The holy trinity vegetables—onions, bell peppers, and celery—are essential for imparting the authentic flavor profile of Mom Duke’s Shrimp. While you can experiment with substitutes, such as shallots or green onions, sticking to the traditional holy trinity will yield the best results.

9. **Is Mom Duke’s Shrimp gluten-free?**
The basic ingredients of Mom Duke’s Shrimp are gluten-free. However, it’s essential to check the labels of pre-packaged Cajun seasoning and Worcestershire sauce, as some brands may contain gluten or gluten-containing ingredients.

10. **Can I customize Mom Duke’s Shrimp with additional ingredients?**
Absolutely! Mom Duke’s Shrimp is a versatile dish that can be customized to suit your taste preferences. Feel free to add ingredients like diced tomatoes, mushrooms, or Andouille sausage to enhance the flavor and texture of the dish according to your liking.

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