Seafood Creole

2 pounds Maine shrimp, peeled
1 1/4 lb Maine scallops, quartered and tough muscle removed
2 32 oz. cans diced tomatoes (I like Muir Glen Fire Roasted)
2 med. onions, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup chopped green onions
handful of chopped fresh parsley
3 bay leaves
Salt & Pepper
1/4 t cayenne pepper
1 +/-  cup water, white wine, or stock (shrimp)
2 tbs. flour
3 tbs. oil
Hot sauce  such as Louisiana Hot Sauce or Tabasco (optional)
Cooked white rice

In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly until the flour becomes golden brown (this is a classic blonde roux). Add the onions and sauté for about 10 minutes, then add the bell pepper and celery and sauté for another 15 minutes. Add the garlic, stir briefly until fragrant, then stir in the tomatoes, cayenne and bay leaves. Cook over med-low for a minimum of 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, reducing heat as needed. The sauce should thicken considerably. Twenty minutes before dinner, cook the rice.

Just a few minutes before serving, season the scallops and shrimp with salt and pepper. Raise the heat to medium. Add the scallops and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the shrimp. Cook about 2 more minutes, until seafood is just done. Check the mixture’s thickness — the seafood will have thinned the sauce; add water wine or stock to thin to desired consistency. Taste and add seasoning or hot sauce as needed; serve and swoon.

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