Blackened Grilled Shrimp Po' Boys

Coming up with new recipes for the grill has been the summer challenge this year. I've had my fair share of lazy meals where I just throw some chicken breasts on the grill, but got creative this past weekend with some tasty po' boys. 

The recipe calls for homemade blackened seasoning. I made a big batch, and have the rest saved in the spice cabinet for future use. You most likely have all the spices needed to make your own. It's worth it, I guarantee. 

Blackened Grilled Shrimp Po' Boys
makes 4 po' boy sandwiches

1 lb. fresh shrimp (peeled and deveined)
2 tbsp blackening seasoning (recipe below)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium tomato (rough dice)
8 Romaine lettuce leaves
8 tbsp blackened aioli (recipe below)
4 Italian or Po' Boy rolls
2 tbsp melted unsalted butter

Let's start with the shrimp. Marinading the shrimp for a few hours before grilling is key. Rinse the shrimp, pat dry and toss into a mixing bowl. Cover shrimp in 2 tbsp olive oil and 2 tbsp blackening seasoning. Toss to coat shrimp. Cover bowl with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 hours. 

As the shrimp marinade, soak 6-8 wooden skewers in water. This helps prevent the skewers from burning when they hit the hot grill. 

Remove shrimp from fridge and skewer 5-6 shrimp per skewer. Set aside on a plate and get the grill cranked up.

Heat grill to high heat (400 degrees), and throw on the skewers. Each side will only need 3-4 minutes, or 7-8 minutes total. Remove from heat and let cool slightly before removing the tails and pulling off the skewer.

Butter the inside of the Italian rolls, and throw the rolls on the grill, cut side down, for 2 minutes.

Now assemble the delicious Po' Boy. Take the bun, and put a couple Romaine leaves down to create a barrier between the bread and all the liquids. Lay 6-7 shrimp on the lettuce. Add chopped tomato and blackened ailoi. And there you have it folks. 

Blackening Seasoning
1 1/2 tbsp hot paprika
1 tbsp roasted garlic slices or 1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp fire roasted onion (dried) or 1 tsp onion powder
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Toss all spices into a spice grinder and pulse to make a mostly smooth mixture. Funnel into a sealable container and store for up to a year.

Blackened Aioli
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 lemon (juice)
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp blackening seasoning

Mix all ingredients together and store in a jar with a lid. Refrigerate until ready to use. Can be stored for up to 2 weeks in the fridge.

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