Winter's bountiful shrimp harvest plus fresh parsley and green onions snipped from the garden makes this hearty soup a tasty treat. I dreamed it up for 2001's New Year's Eve. It was a very popular way to ring in the New Year.
1/3 cup safflower oil
3 tablespoons unbleached flour
1 onion, diced
whites of 4 green onions, chopped
1 stalk celery, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed and chopped
3-4 cups warm water OR 1/2 water and 1/2 broth
salt and black and red pepper to taste
3-4 white potatoes, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 pound cooked and peeled shrimp, cut in halves
greens of 4 green onions, chopped
handful of fresh parsley, chopped
Make a roux by slowly heating the oil and adding the flour to it. When the flour begins to turn light brown, add the onions, whites, celery, and garlic and cook about 5 minutes. Add the water slowly, stirring constantly to incorporate it, then add seasonings and potatoes and cook 10 minutes. Finally, add the shrimp, green onions, and parsley and adjust the seasonings.
The Amazing Story of Kudzu
Every summer of my childhood we drove from north Louisiana to the Mississippi Gulf Coast for family vacations at my great aunt's home. As on every familiar path, there were landmarks along the way. Wiggins, Mississippi, brought a mention of its famous native son Dizzy Dean and his pickle factory in the hometown. The Philips Milk of Magnesia plant meant we were nearing our destination.
But in between stood a huge barn gone to kudzu, its silhouette intact, with no apparent lumber left beneath. We were sure that like cockroaches holding hands keep tenements from falling down, kudzu's relentless march kept that dilapidated barn standing. One year a car closely resembling that of the Blues Brothers first movie appeared in the field near the barn on our trip to the coast. When we returned six weeks later, only its outline remained, the car vanished into "the vine that ate the South." If, like me, you've always figured there must be some good in the old vine, check out this site (www.alabamatv.org/kudzu/) based on an Alabama Public Television series.