Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Carol became famous in the 1960's in North Carolina for this recipe. She was asked to put the recipe in whatever cookbook a local organization was putting together.  It is sublime. It turns canned shrimp into bites of heaven on a cracker. It is also great as a sandwich spread.

A pate is an impressive way to make a little shrimp feed more people at a party or on a buffet.  The price of shrimp is so high and it is so easy to plop a bunch of shrimp on your plate that it is hard to serve very many people with whole shrimp if your budget is tight.  This pate has all the wonderful flavor of shrimp without the back breaking expense.

SUMMER 2007 UPDATE: I tried this with a bag of frozen shell-on shrimp that I cooked, drained, shelled and chopped in a food processor. The pate was heavenly. I also made it with frozen cooked shrimp. I didn’t thaw them completely so they didn’t drain well and the pate was wet; now I quickly dip the frozen cooked shrimp in boiling water and drain them before using in the pate.
SUMMER 2008 UPDATE: Although in the 1970’s I served this pate made with canned shrimp to the CBS 60 Minutes cast and crew when they were filming in Kirksville and everyone loved it, Christy made it with canned shrimp this summer and was very disappointed.
DECEMBER 2010 UPDATE: I was in the store and grabbed what use to be a pound bag of frozen shrimp.  When I got home, I found the bag only contained 11 ounces.  Have you noticed how things just keep shrinking?  I cut the amount of butter and mayonnaise in half but used the original amount of the seasonings.  It was delicious.

Don't buy white pepper just for this recipe as black pepper works fine.

20 ounces canned shrimp, the tiny, less expensive ones work fine or a 16 oz. bag of frozen shrimp, thawed
1/4 c minced onion
1/2 c butter or margarine
3 T lemon juice
1 t horseradish
2/3 c mayonnaise
1/2 t salt
1/4 t white pepper

Ingredients:  Shrimp, onion, lemon juice, mayonnaise, butter, horseradish, salt and white pepper.

Drain and mash the shrimp very fine with a potato masher. Add the onion. Melt the butter. Pour over the shrimp/onion mixture; mix well. Add the remaining ingredients; mix well. (I put the shrimp in a food processor and pulse a couple of times to start chopping the shrimp.  I add the rest of the ingredients and pulse until all the ingredients are mixed.) Pack the resulting paste into a three-cup mold which has been sprayed with non-stick vegetable spray. Chill 4 to 5 hours or until firm. Drip mold in hot water and run knife around the edge.  Turn out of mold onto a plate and garnish. This is particularly good on a cracker like Ritz or Town House.

Thaw and drain frozen shrimp.

Dip in hot water to completely thaw.

Drain again as shrimp must be as dry as possible.

Put shrimp on paper towels and remove shells or tails.  Which ever is necessary.  My shrimp just had the tails on.

Squeeze lemon juice.  The rind had gone into cookies.  Waste not, want not.

Melt butter.

Chop some onion.

Finely chopped is best.

Put shrimp in food processor, or mash with a fork or potato masher.

Pulse a couple of times to get the shrimp partially chopped.

Shrimp partially chopped.

Add the rest of ingredients and pulse to mix. 

Looking good.

Ready to pack into a mold.

Spay a bowl or mold with cooking spray.

Pack in the pate and chill completely.

Dip mold in hot water.  Run a knife around the edge of mold or bowl.  Put a plate on top of bowl and unmold by turn over.  Garnish with crackers.

So delicious. 

Enjoy!!!  Enjoy!!! Enjoy!!!

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