Black-Eyed Pea Battered Shrimp

Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Yields: 6 Servings

Shrimp are deep-fried every day in Louisiana, but the batters used to coat and flavor them are as varied as the cooks preparing the seafood. This recipe was created by Robert Harrington, former dean of the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University. You may wish to try this batter on one of the most unique seafood products in the gulf, softshell shrimp, yes, that's what I said, softshell shrimp. You can eat the whole thing head-on!


36 (16-20 count) shrimp, head-on
3/4 cup black-eyed peas, cooked
1/4 cup diced onions
1 tbsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp ground ginger
Creole seasoning to taste
salt and black pepper to taste
2 eggs
2 ounces vegetable oil
1 and 1/4 cups beer
2 cups flour
Louisiana hot sauce to taste
1 quart vegetable oil


Peel shells from tail of shrimp, being careful not to remove head. Devein shrimp. Dip only tail portion into batter. In a food processor, combine peas, onions, garlic, ginger, Creole seasoning, salt and pepper. Blend on high speed 2-3 minutes or until peas are coarsely chopped. Add eggs, 2 ounces oil and beer. Blend 1-2 minutes or until peas are puréed. Add flour and blend 1-2 minutes. Pour black-eyed pea batter into a ceramic bowl. In a home-style deep fryer such as a FryDaddy, heat oil according to manufacturer's directions. If a deep fryer is not available, place 3 inches of oil in a large pot and heat to 350 degrees F. Dip shrimp into batter and allow all excess to drain. Gently place shrimp into deep fryer and allow to cook until golden brown and partially floating.