In our quest to find a meal for Louisiana a few weeks ago, I pinned quite a few other recipes, including one for Shrimp Po’Boy sandwiches. These are so delicious, but we have had them in restaurants, so we wanted to try something new. Hence the Gumbo.
Anyway, I came across the recipe again the other day while searching for something to make for dinner. The following is a conversation between me and hubby in the car on the way home:
Me: “Look at this shrimp po’boy. Doesn’t it look great?”
Hubby: “Yeah. We should make that tonight. But instead of the remoulade sauce, we should use the Bang Bang shrimp sauce we make for Christmas Eve.”
Me: “We can do that?”
Hubby: “We can do anything we want. It’s our meal.”
Me: “Okay, sounds good.”
We get home—hubby goes downstairs to take a nap, leaving me to make dinner by myself. 😡
I’m a Big Girl, I Can Make a Shrimp Po’Boy By Myself…
No worries, who needs him anyway? I’ve got this. Plus, I was excited to use my air fryer to fry the shrimp. Like I said, we usually make Bang Bang Shrimp for Christmas Eve—it’s a very labor intensive process that usually takes hours. I was thinking that by using the air fryer I would shave lots of time off of the process.
I started off with making the Bang Bang sauce while the shrimp defrosted. It’s so simple, with only 4 ingredients—1/2 c. mayo, 4 TBSP of sweet chili sauce, 2 TBSP honey, and a few dashes of hot sauce. You whisk them together and stick the sauce in the fridge to chill.
(In case you’re wondering how this differs from a Remoulade sauce, a Remoulade sauce generally has a mayo/egg base and some have hot sauce, but it has garlic, capers, vinegar and mustard.)
Then I made the batter to dip the shrimp in. I mixed the 1 c. buttermilk, 3/4 c. flour, 1/2 c. cornstarch, egg, and TBSP of hot sauce together. The result is a thick batter:
The Messy Part…
The next step is to dredge the shrimp in this batter so that the Panko breadcrumbs will stick. This is the part of this recipe I despise. No matter how I do this it’s a mess. I’ve tried using my fingers, using a fork, using a Ziploc baggie. The result is always clumping breadcrumbs stuck to me, the table, the fork, the walls…
If anyone has any suggestions for a clean way to dip shrimp in batter and then coat with Panko, PLEASE let me know.
This part ended up taking just as long as it always does and I didn’t even have the assistant that I usually have on Christmas Eve—he was still off in dreamland. But I still had high hopes for the frying portion to be a breeze.
The air fryer did not disappoint like it did the other day for The Salmon Calamity. The shrimp came nice and crispy—about 5 minutes on one side and then I flipped then to crisp up the other side. The best part about it? No grease to deal with!
The result of my efforts was a big fat Shrimp Po’Boy sandwich. Or maybe just a shrimp sandwich. Apparently, what sets a Po’Boy apart from a regular sub sandwich is not the Remoulade like I originally thought—it’s the bread.
A Shrimp Po’Boy is on a baguette with a crispy outside and soft center. We didn’t have any baguettes at our grocery store so we used Portuguese rolls which are sort of crispier on the outside and soft in the center:
All right, all right! Maybe it’s not an authentic Shrimp Po’Boy, but it was still pretty damn good. And the best part? Everyone ate their sandwich and wanted more. No matter what you call it, that’s a win in my book.