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Shrimp Jambalaya by Melissa M. Martin

Updated: Dec 9, 2022

While I was researching American cuisine, this is the 2nd cookbook that was recommended to me (the 1st is Sean Sherman's The Sioux Chef's Indigenous Kitchen). I bought this cookbook without much hesitation. Like any other cuisine, there are so many roots, cultures and stories behind every dish.

American cuisine isn't about just hot dogs, burgers and pizzas. It is so much more. This is the 1st of the many dishes that I wanted to make and I guess I found one that speaks authenticity. I replaced some of the ingredients with the ones I like. Isn't it obvious? I prefer leeks to celery. Lol!

Please check out the cookbook. It is detailed with stories and recipes. I cannot wait to try out more of Melissa's recipes. This does half a day of preparing and cooking, but it is 100% worth it.

And isn't that why our grandma's cooking so fabulous? Our grandma start prepping the day before to make sure the meat is marinated and everything was in place. Just saying...



(Serve 4)

  • Shrimp, 600g

  • Baking Soda, 1/2 TBSP

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • Black Pepper, Pinch

  • Cayenne, Pinch

  • Hot Sauce, For Marinating

  • Green Bell Pepper, 1

  • Grapeseed / Sunflower / Canola / Peanut Oil, 60g

  • Yellow Onion Finely Sliced, 2

  • Granulated Sugar, Pinch

  • Garlic Finely Minced, 3 Cloves

  • Leeks Coarsely Sliced, 2

  • Bay Leaves, 2

  • Jasmine Rice, 390g

  • Parsley Coarsely Chopped, A Handful

  • Scallions Coarsely Chopped, A Handful



  • Oven

  • Sauce Pot

  • Heavy Sauce Pot



  1. Shell and devein the shrimp. Reserve the shells.

  2. Wash the shrimp thoroughly and transfer them into a shallow bowl.

  3. Coat the shrimp well with baking soda.

  4. Add water and ice cubes, making sure the shrimp are fully submerged.

  5. Set aside for 30 mins.

  6. After 30 mins, drain and wash the shrimp thoroughly.

  7. Set the shrimp aside for another 30 mins.

  8. The shrimps should change their color to opaque pink.

  9. *That is to clean the shrimps properly and also to remove any seafoody odor.*

  10. Wash the reserved shells thoroughly.

  11. Drain and transfer them to a sauce pot.

  12. Add about 750ml of water.

  13. As usual, I will add all the vegetable scraps.

  14. Turn the heat up to medium and stir to combine well.

  15. Bring it up to a simmer and cook for 3 to 5 mins.

  16. Cover and set aside to infuse for 10 mins.

  17. After 10 mins, drain and discard the residue.

  18. Now you have a wonderful shrimp stock.

  19. Back to the shrimps.

  20. Marinade the shrimp with salt, pepper, cayenne and hot sauce.

  21. Make sure the shrimp are coated well.

  22. Cover and set aside to marinade for 30 mins to 1hr at room temperature.

  23. Deseed and quarter the bell pepper.

  24. Broil in the oven until charred.

  25. Remove from oven, cover and set aside to steam for 30 mins.

  26. After 30 mins, remove the charred skins, coarsely slice and set aside.

  27. In a heavy sauce pot over medium-high heat, add 60g of oil.

  28. Once the oil is heated up, add the onions.

  29. Season with salt, pepper and sugar.

  30. Saute until the onions are caramelized.

  31. *If it gets too dry, deglaze with a splash of that stock.*

  32. Add in garlic, leeks, roasted bell peppers and bay leaves.

  33. Saute until well combined.

  34. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cover.

  35. Cook for about 5 mins.

  36. Deglaze with a splash of that stock.

  37. Add in rice and stir to combine well.

  38. Season with salt and pepper.

  39. Give it a saute and add in the marinated shrimp.

  40. Saute until well combined.

  41. Add in 600ml of the stock.

  42. *If you have any remaining stock, freeze it in an ice cube tray.*

  43. Give it a stir and bring it up to a simmer.

  44. Turn the heat down to the low.

  45. Cook for 8 to 10 mins.

  46. *Do not be tempted to stir. The liquid should have almost evaporated and left with puddles of wet rice.*

  47. Cover and turn the heat down to the lowest setting.

  48. Set a timer and cook for 20 mins.

  49. *Do not be tempted to unlid and have a peek. Do not. Trust the process.*

  50. After 20 mins, turn off the heat and keep it covered for another 25 mins.

  51. *Again, do not be tempted to unlid.*

  52. After 25 mins, uncover and garnish with parsley and scallions.

  53. Give it a quick mix and serve.

  54. The bottom burnt crispy parts are the best.

Make use of vegetable scraps and shrimp shells to make shrimp stock...

My new love for rice...

Hearty and yummilicious in every way...


Recipe Video:

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