Browning shrimp shells and then simmering them in broth delivers great seafood flavor.
Peel, devein shrimp and remove tails; do not discard shells or tails. Cut shrimp into small pieces; set aside. Heat oil in (4-qt./3.8-L) Casserole over medium-high heat 1-3 minutes or until shimmering. Add shells and tails; cook 3-4 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Place shells, tails, clam juice and stock into Large Micro-Cooker®; microwave, covered, on HIGH 8-9 minutes or until hot. Keep covered with lid and set aside.
Meanwhile, on clean cutting board, finely chop onion and celery using Food Chopper. Dice potato and slice bacon crosswise into 1/4-in. (6-mm) strips using Santoku Knife. Set potato aside. Add bacon to Casserole and cook over medium heat 5-7 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon from Casserole using Small Slotted Spoon (do not drain drippings). Set bacon aside.
Add onion and celery to Casserole; cook 3-4 minutes or until tender. Add flour, pressed garlic and rub. Cook and stir 30 seconds or until combined. Add wine and simmer 3-4 minutes or until wine is reduced by half. Strain broth mixture through Micro-Cooker® lid into Casserole. Add potatoes and half and half. Bring to a simmer; reduce heat to medium-low and cook 12-14 minutes or until chowder is thickened and potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in shrimp, salt and thyme, if desired. Cook 3-4 minutes or until shrimp are pink and opaque. Serve with bacon.
Yield: 8 cups (2 L), 6 servings of 1 1/3 cups (325 mL)
Nutrients per serving: Calories 300, Total Fat 12 g, Saturated Fat 4 g, Cholesterol 65 mg, Carbohydrate 23 g, Protein 19 g, Sodium 1140 mg, Fiber 2 g
U.S. Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 1/2 starch, 2 low-fat meat, 1 fat (1 1/2 carb)
Cook’s Tips: Tiger shrimp (which have thin gray shells) can be substituted for the gulf shrimp, but gulf shrimp’s thicker orange shells are more flavorful.
To substitute Creole Rub, omit salt and increase flour to 1/3 cup (75 mL). Add 1 tbsp (15 mL) Creole seasoning and 2 tbsp (30 mL) tomato paste to onion and celery in Step 3.