A Shrimp Creole Recipe from a Sixth-Technology Georgia Farmer

Matthew Raiford, a chef and farmer, at all times wished to write down a cookbook, particularly a cookbook in regards to the South. The chance offered itself after he gave a TEDx talk in 2018. As Raiford sat offstage following the discuss, titled “Legacy within the Soil,” author Amy Condon approached him. “Amy walks out and goes, ‘Okay, it’s worthwhile to write a guide,’” Raiford says. “And I simply seemed up at her and I used to be like, ‘Yeah, for those who assist me write it.’”

The guide Raiford wrote with Condon known as Bress ’n’ Nyam, a Gullah phrase which means “bless and eat.” And like that TEDx discuss, it dives deep into Raiford’s family legacy to offer readers a way of a spot: his nook of the Georgia coast and extra exactly, Gilliard Farms, the land that’s been in his household for six generations, since 1874.

Finally, with Bress ’n’ Nyam, Raiford hopes to “present what that surroundings appears to be like like and present what this space of the world appears to be like like, as a result of I’m not Charleston, I’m not Atlanta, I’m not Savannah, I’m not Florida. I’m type of caught in that center,” he says. “I wished to write down one thing that was indicative of this space and the way I grew up.”

The particulars of life on Gilliard Farms seem in images, but additionally in recipes, as with the recipe for Effie’s Shrimp Creole. Effie is Raiford’s mom. Effie can be the title of his mom’s mom and her grandmother earlier than her, and the recipe’s historical past reaches again practically as far. “It’s about three generations previous, if not 4,” Raiford says. But it surely didn’t get the title it goes by within the guide till Raiford’s mom mentioned her coastal paella with a good friend from Louisiana and so they famous its similarities to the Louisiana dish. It grew to become a signature. “This was one of many dishes my mother would take to events … everybody would devour this,” Raiford says. “You recognize when folks go to church and a really particular individual makes a pie and everybody desires to purchase the slices of that pie? My mother’s shrimp Creole is like that.”

Raiford and his household would exit shrimping for the dish, and it’s this sense of connection between meals and place that Raiford hopes readers take away from Bress ’n’ Nyam. “I would like them to consider the place they’re and what meals or foodways or meals programs are in place of their space that they don’t learn about,” he says. “Everyone has a meals story and it simply takes a second typically to dial all of it in and the extra they dial within the extra they’re going to search out that’s going to be scrumptious.”

Effie’s Shrimp Creole

Serves 4

When people consider coastal Georgia meals, they consider shrimp and grits. That dish is certainly indicative of the Saltwater Gullah and Geechee who lived on the Sea Islands. They most frequently made the dish with a wealthy brown gravy or roux, far more akin to a gumbo. Freshwater —​ or mainland — ​Geechee, like my household, made one thing nearer to a jambalaya, no okra however richly flavored with tomatoes and crimson pepper. The rice, after all, stretches it. For me, my mother’s shrimp creole, a recipe handed down by means of the household, is a consolation meals.


2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 yellow onion, finely diced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 inexperienced bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 crimson bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 orange bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 16-​ounce can tomato puree
1 tablespoon crimson pepper flakes
2 cups raw long-​grain rice or Carolina Gold Rice
1 quart heat shrimp inventory, ready or do-it-yourself (recipe follows)
2 kilos giant shrimp, peeled and deveined, shells reserved for inventory
Nice sea salt and freshly floor black pepper


Step 1: In a big cast-​iron skillet, soften the butter over medium warmth. Stir within the onions and garlic, and saute till golden brown, about 5 minutes.

Step 2: Add the peppers, tomato puree, crimson pepper flakes, and rice, stirring till effectively mixed. Pour the inventory in slowly to forestall splattering, because the pan will likely be sizzling, then carry the creole to a boil. As soon as boiling, stir, cowl, then scale back the warmth to low and simmer for quarter-hour.

Step 3: Take away the quilt, add the shrimp, and provides the rice an excellent stir. Cook dinner for five to 7 minutes extra, till all of the liquid is absorbed and the shrimp have pinked and curled. Style and add salt and pepper to your liking. Serve and revel in.

Shrimp Inventory

Makes 2 quarts


2 quarts (8 cups) chilly water
4 cups shrimp shells
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 Vidalia onion, peeled and quartered
1 carrot, roughly chopped
1 celery rib, lower into 2-​inch items, together with leaves
1 lemon, quartered
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs thyme
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon complete black peppercorns


Step 1: Pour the water in a big stockpot and put aside.

Step 2: Rinse and drain the shrimp shells. In a big skillet, warmth the oil over medium-​excessive warmth and toss the shrimp shells for two minutes. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and cook dinner, stirring, for two to three minutes extra.

Step 3: Add the shrimp shells and greens to the stockpot, then toss within the lemon, bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper. Deliver the inventory to a boil, then scale back warmth and simmer for 40 minutes. Take away from the warmth, then pressure the inventory by means of a cheesecloth-​lined sieve into quart-​ or pint-​sized containers. Cool the inventory fully, then refrigerate for as much as 2 weeks or freeze for later use.

Excerpted from Bress ’n’ Nyam: Gullah Geechee Recipes from a Sixth-Technology Farmer. Copyright © 2021 CheFarmer Matthew Raiford and Amy Paige Condon. Pictures © 2021 by Siobhán Egan. Reproduced by permission of The Countryman Press, a Division of W.W. Norton & Firm. All rights reserved.

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