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Warm Spicy Butter Poached Shrimp

  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 2 pounds large (10 to 15 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons hot red pepper sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Essence
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 sticks (1-pound) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch cayenne
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Dash hot red pepper sauce
  • Chopped parsley, garnish
  • Chopped green onions, garnish
  • 1 baguette, as accompaniment


  • Place the shrimp in a large glass bowl or baking dish. Add the hot sauce and Essence and toss to coat evenly. Refrigerate for 1 hour, turning occasionally.
  • In a large saucepan, bring 3 tablespoons of water to a boil. Reduce the heat to very low, and whisk in all the butter piece by piece until emulsified. Add the lemon zest, bay leaves, salt, cayenne, and garlic clove, and stir to combine. Add the shrimp and cook gently over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Add the Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and hot sauce, and stir to combine. Remove from the heat and discard the bay leaves and garlic clove. Adjust the seasoning, to taste. Transfer the shrimp to 4 large, shallow bowls. Spoon some of the butter sauce over each portion, and garnish with the parsley and green onions. Serve with slices of bread.
  • Note: The secret to this is using a saucepan, not a skillet or saute pan, and cooking over very low heat - don't be impatient. This is very rich, so it's best served as an appetizer.