Recipe courtesy of Emeril Lagasse
2 hr 20 min
20 min
2 hr
4 servings


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped onions
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • Essence, recipe follows
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 1 small jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and chopped
  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • 1/2 cup small diced red onion
  • 1 ear sweet corn, kernels removed from the cob
  • 1 pound rock shrimp, peeled
  • 1/2 cup small diced Roma tomatoes, cored and seeded
  • 2 cups Red Mole Sauce, recipe follows, store bought ok
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Red Mole Sauce:
  • 12 chiles guajillos or chilcostles
  • 1/2 pound (about 2 small) tomatoes, stewed
  • 4 tablespoons melted lard or safflower oil
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 whole allspice
  • 1 medium white onion, thickly sliced
  • 9 small garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 (3 inch) cinnamon stick, broken into thin strips
  • 1 small ripe plantain, peeled and cut into thick rounds
  • 3 slices French bread
  • 1 ounce Mexican chocolate
  • Sea salt


In a saucepan, over medium heat, add a tablespoon of the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions. Season with salt and pepper. Saute for 2 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the garlic, jalapenos, and black beans. Continue to saute for 1 minute. Add the water and bay leaf. Bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook until the beans are tender, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Remove from the heat and cool completely and strain. In a food processor, fitted with a metal blade, puree 3/4 of the mixture until smooth. Add water if it becomes thick. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the processor and turn into a mixing bowl. Stir the remaining beans into the pureed beans. Season the flour, egg wash and bread crumbs with Essence.

Divide the mixture into eighths and form into individual rounds, about 1-inch thick. Dredge each cake in the seasoned flour. Dip each cake into the egg wash, letting the excess drip off. Dredge the cakes in the seasoned bread crumbs, coating completely. In a large saute pan, over medium heat, add the vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, but not smoking, pan fry until crispy, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.

In another saute pan, over medium heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the red onions and corn. Season with salt and pepper. Saute for 4 minutes. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Add the shrimp to the vegetables. Continue to saute for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and remaining teaspoon of garlic. Continue to saute for 2 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup of the Mole Sauce. Remove from the heat and add the cilantro.

Remove the cakes from the pan and drain on paper towels. To serve, spoon the sauce in the center of each plate. Place 2 cakes in the center of each plate. Spoon the shrimp mixture over the cakes. Garnish with parsley.

Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):

Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.

Recipe from New New Orleans Cooking, by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.

Red Mole Sauce:

Remove the stems, if any, from the chiles, slit them open, and remove veins and seeds. Toast the chiles on a hot comale for a few seconds on each side, pressing them down until the inside flesh turns an opaque, tobacco color.

Rinse the chiles in cold water, cover with hot water, and set aside to soak for about 15 minutes. Put the tomatoes into a blender jar and blend briefly.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the lard and fry the sesame seeds for a few seconds until a deep golden brown.

Transfer with a slotted spoon, draining them as much as possible, to the blender jar; add the oregano, cloves and allspice and blend until smooth, adding a little more of the water in which the chiles were soaking if necessary.

Add more lard to the pan and heat; add the onion and garlic and fry until translucent. Add the cinnamon pieces and fry until the onions and garlic are lightly browned. Transfer with a slotted spoon to the blender jar.

Add the plantain and bread to the pan and fry over low heat until a deep golden color; transfer to the blender jar.

Adding more chile water if necessary, blend until you have a smooth puree.

Gradually add the soaked chiles with more water as necessary and blend until smooth.

When all the chiles have been blended, dip a spoon into the bottom of the blender jar and take out a sample of the sauce to see if the rather tough chile skins have been blended sufficiently. If not, add a little more water, stir well, and then blend for a few seconds more.

Heat the remaining lard in a heavy pan or saute pan, add the blended sauce and chocolate, and cook over medium heat, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan to prevent sticking, for about 15 minutes. The sauce should be fairly thick and lightly cover the back of a wooden spoon.

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