Red Eye Gravy is traditionally prepared after frying slices of country ham. The ham is removed from the pan and the cooked-on bits in the pan are deglazed with cold black coffee. The coffee adds a pleasant note of bitterness and a nice deep dark flavor. I have taken some liberties and embellished it a bit. I use smoked bacon instead of country ham and then caramelize aromatic vegetables in the bacon grease for added color and depth of flavor in the finished dish. DO NOT become impatient, the key to the deep rich flavor of this dish is the caramelization of the peppers, onions, tomatoes and mushrooms.
Recipe courtesy of Darin Sehnert
Shrimp in Red Eye Gravy
Total:
1 hr 15 min
Active:
25 min
Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy
Total:
1 hr 15 min
Active:
25 min
Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients

  • 4 strips smoked bacon, cut cross-wise into thin strips
  • 4 to 6 branches fresh thyme
  • 1 cup finely diced yellow onion
  • 1 cup finely diced green bell pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 cup cold black coffee
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1/4 cup Madeira wine or sherry or brandy
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 pound large 16-20 count uncooked shrimp, peeled
  • Creamy grits, for serving

Directions

Place bacon in large saute or braising pan and cook over medium-high heat until the fat is rendered. Meanwhile, bruise the whole thyme sprigs by lightly pounding with the side of the wide end of a chef's knife. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and place on a paper-towel-lined plate and set aside. Leave the bacon grease in the pan for cooking the vegetables.

Add the bruised thyme, onions and bell peppers to the bacon grease. Sprinkle liberally with salt and black pepper. Stir to coat with the bacon grease and spread the vegetables evenly across the bottom of the pan. Cook until the peppers and onions are nicely browned. Add the butter and allow it to melt. Add the mushrooms, garlic, tomatoes and reserved bacon and another sprinkling of salt and black pepper. Cook until the mushrooms and tomatoes have cooked down and given off their juices.

Deglaze the pan with the coffee and stir to scrape up cooked-on bits. Allow the coffee to cook down until reduced by half, and then add the chicken broth and hot pepper sauce. While the chicken broth is coming to a simmer, begin pulling the thyme sprigs from the pan, scraping the stems with the edge of a spoon to remove the leaves that haven't yet fallen off. Discard the stems.

When the mixture comes to a simmer, mix together the Madeira and cornstarch, and then add into the pan. Cook until thickened to a sauce-like consistency. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt, black pepper or hot pepper sauce. Stir in the peeled shrimp and cook until they just turn pink, about 2 minutes. Serve over creamy grits.

This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional. It has not been tested for home use.

IDEAS YOU'LL LOVE

Scrambled Eggs with Sweet Potato Biscuits, Ham Steak and Red-Eye Gravy

Recipe courtesy of Bobby Flay

Country Ham with Red-Eyed Gravy and Creamy Grits

Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Red Eye Chili

Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray

Turkey Sausage Red Gravy

Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Emeril's Meat Balls and Red Gravy

Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Spicy Short Ribs Smothered in Red Gravy

Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Emeril's Meat Balls and Red Gravy

Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

Charleston Shrimp and Grits with Tasso Blue Crab Gravy

Thai Red Curry Shrimp with Jasmine Rice

Cooking Tips

How to Poach Eggs Perfectly

Watch videos from Cooking Channel shows and chefs. Learn to prepare feature recipes and relive your favorite moments

On TV

Cupcake Wars

10am | 9c

Cupcake Wars

11am | 10c

Cupcake Wars

12pm | 11c

Cupcake Wars

1pm | 12c

Cheap Eats

2pm | 1c

Cheap Eats

2:30pm | 1:30c

Cheap Eats

3pm | 2c

Cheap Eats

3:30pm | 2:30c

Cheap Eats

4pm | 3c

Cheap Eats

4:30pm | 3:30c

Cheap Eats

5pm | 4c

Cheap Eats

5:30pm | 4:30c

Cheap Eats

6pm | 5c

Cheap Eats

6:30pm | 5:30c

Man Fire Food

7:30pm | 6:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Man Fire Food

8pm | 7c

Man Fire Food

8:30pm | 7:30c

Man Fire Food

9:30pm | 8:30c

Burgers, Brew & 'Que

10:30pm | 9:30c

Good Eats

11pm | 10c

Good Eats

11:30pm | 10:30c

Man Fire Food

12am | 11c

Man Fire Food

12:30am | 11:30c

Man Fire Food

1am | 12c

Man Fire Food

1:30am | 12:30c

Burgers, Brew & 'Que

2:30am | 1:30c

Good Eats

3am | 2c

Good Eats

3:30am | 2:30c