Henri talks Shrimpy’s, cheese and new recipes
Shrimpy’s973 East Ave.
Chico, CA 95928
Henri confesses to some ambivalence regarding his dear sister Colette’s interest in joining him in his culinary forays into the fourth estate and her suggestion that she is prepared to pen her very own series of Chow columns. Of course, impeccable epicurean instincts run in la famille Bourride. Apparently, however, a natural flair for the elegant usage of languageness does not. Her first “review":
Oysters, ok. Stuffed muchrooms to die for. Crab cake … maybe best I’ve ever had outside of Maryland. Not cheap. Delicious.
Très sad, non? Clearly, she’s going to need some instruction personnelle.
On the other hand, her little note was intriguing and, since I hadn’t eaten in nearly an hour and a half, I headed right over to the new Shrimpy’s restaurant and ordered a Shrimpy’s Melt, a shrimp-and-snowcrab sandwich with white sauce and melted Swiss cheese on a sourdough roll. She was right: $10.95 and delicious.
Located in the East Avenue parking lot behind All the Best Video and across from Spiteri’s (and next door to Hy-Fy Muffler, where Henri was so mercilessly humiliated last fall while innocently shopping for scarves), Shrimpy’s specializes in New Orleans- and Mexican-style seafood and a variety of chicken and beef dishes, as well as shrimp, turkey and veggie sandwiches. Appetizers (calamari, stuffed mushrooms) run $7-$10, and large salads (crab Louis, New Mexico steak, Caesar with grilled salmon) are $6-$11, as are the sandwiches (grilled tuna with spinach, red onion, roma tomatoes; cilantro-lime chicken). Entrees ($11-$21) include New Orleans-style barbecue shrimp, carne asada, grilled creole snapper, and a tofu-and-veggie stir fry, as well as daily specials, including Colette’s crab cakes.
Henri’s withholding forkal assignment until he’s been able to go back, but watch for a full review in the future. In the meantime, try it and let me know what you think.
No doubt, readers have been as disquieted and overwrought as Henri has been by the vicious Camembert controversy dominating the news. For those unaware, the cheese, the recipe for which was developed by an 18th-century priest from the town of Brie, is essentially under attack: A company from France’s Isigny sur Mer has announced that it plans to start making Camembert with “micro-filtered milk” instead of the traditional raw unpasteurized, unsterilized milk direct from Normandy udders. The company claims that treating the milk will reduce the risk of E. coli bacteria. Probably true. You probably won’t get E. coli from Velveeta either. France’s National Institute for Origin and Quality (INAO) is expected to decide in six months to a year whether to allow the company to use the new technology. For now, perhaps there’s reason to be at least un peu optimistic, with the slow pace at which things move in mon homeland. Besides, as President de Gaulle once said, “How can you govern a nation where there are 258 kinds of cheese?”
And finally, Henri is thrilled to pass on a new recipe. I recently slow-cooked a bone-in pork butt (an unfortunate term, which Henri refuses to address except to stress that the cut is misnamed and is actually a shoulder …), allowing it to become as tender and flavorful as a much costlier cut of meat (it runs $1.80-$2.50 a pound). Colette and I found it absolutely divine—as did Miss Marilyn and Mr. Theo, who nibbled on table scraps for their dessert as we enjoyed a lovely port out back on the gloriously warm evening.
Henri’s bone-in butt
1 bone-in pork butt (4-7 lbs.)
6-10 cloves garlic, sliced in half
1-3 tablespoons dried oregano
1-3 tablespoons dried sage
4-8 sprigs fresh rosemary
salt and freshly ground pepper
Place roast in large baking dish or other pan, and pour olive oil generously over the top, allowing it to drizzle down the sides and pool up in the bottom of the pan. Cut shallow slits into top and sides of roast and insert garlic cloves. Insert rosemary sprigs into some of the slits, and place remaining sprigs around the sides of the pan. Sprinkle oregano and sage on top, season generously with salt and pepper, and cook at 250 degrees for eight hours. Serve with wild rice, a simple salad such as a Ceasar, warm sourdough bread and a Beaujolais or pinot noir.