Bare feet tap-dancing against the burning concrete steps. Grass stains on my shorts and individual blades clinging to my thighs and knees. The creaky porch and closing my eyes as I spin into a cloud of bug spray.
All this floods my brain with one bite of watermelon. We would sit on the front porch and let the red juice run down our forearms as we crunched closer and closer to the rind.
The swelter of this week had me craving the cool fruit, and while I could have purchased myself a whole watermelon and turned dinner into a gluttonous sprawl under my carport, I opted for another summery dish. Maque choux.
Somewhat like a succotash--minus the suffering (I have to imagine being sauteed is rather like a hot tub.) Maque choux is a dish with Cajun and Native American heritage. The name is even thought to be a French take on the original name.
Lots of corn here--I can't tell you how excited I am that corn is in season. So sweet and delicious.
I decided to add shrimp to turn this into an entree. Simply seasoned with citrus pepper and Tony Chachere's.
Paired with New Belgium Brewing's Rolle Bolle and you've got an effective way to treasure the weather, not just curse it.
Shrimp Maque Choux
3 ears corn, husked and shucked, corn milk reserved
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup bacon, diced
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/4 cup celery, diced
1/2 cup green bell pepper, diced
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 cup tomato, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
Ground black pepper
2 green onions, diced
31 - 40 peeled, deveined shrimp
1/2 citrus pepper seasoning
1 1/2 tablespoons Tony Chachere's
1. In a large heavy saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until lightly browned.
2. Add corn, onion, celery, bell pepper, thyme, and a pinch of salt. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes until vegetables are tender.
3. Add tomato, garlic, corn milk, and another pinch of salt. Cook for another fifteen minutes, not stirring quite as often.
4. Meanwhile, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a medium skillet. Season shrimp and then add to skillet, turning occasionally, until shrimp are bright pink and curled.