One where shortcuts are taken.
Even (if not especially) in highly praised, highly rated "Cajun restaurants."
But I'm not naming names.
Just know that rather than using a roux, many restaurants and home cooks turn to cream of mushroom soup to thicken etouffee (and even gravy).
Another true story: I've used a lot of cream of mushroom in my day. A lot.
When I first learned to cook, it was the start of many meals.
Hell, I've made and eaten plenty of crawfish etouffee that started out with cream of mushroom soup.
The thing is, it kind of skeeves me out now.
But I do love mushrooms. And I wondered what would happen if fresh mushrooms were added to shrimp etouffee.
What happened was that the mushrooms made the gravy even darker and richer than with just a roux. And much darker than cream of mushroom soup would have.
How to make shrimp stock
How to make a roux
Shrimp Etouffee with Mushrooms
1 large onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz button mushrooms, sliced
about 1/2 cup flour
1 stick butter
2 1/2 cups shrimp stock
1 to 1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 to 1 1/2 tsp Tony's Creole Seasoning
1 bay leaf
1 lb peeled shrimp
1/4 cup chopped green onion, plus 2 Tbsp for serving
4 cups cooked rice
Have all the vegetables chopped before starting the roux.
In a cast iron or stainless steel pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Sprinkle in 1/2 cup flour and stir. Continue slowly stirring the mixture. If pools of butter form, sprinkle in a small amount of flour. Stir until the roux is the color of a shiny penny.
Add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, and mushrooms and saute for about 15 minutes. Pour in the shrimp stock. Add the seasonings and bay leaf. Simmer for about 10 minutes.
Add the shrimp and 1/4 cup green onion. Cover and simmer another 20 minutes (rice can be cooked during this time). Serve over rice and sprinkle the remaining green onion over each serving. Serves 4.