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Today's Case

Shrimp Spaghetti with Filé

Subject: Recipe Request
From: Louise
Date: 3/26/2021, 8:50 AM

Looking for a Shrimp Spaghetti Recipe using File Powder. The File Powder 
is a thickening agent and there is no cream in the recipe.
Thank you

Hello Louise,

Can you tell me more about this? Where did you see the recipe before, or where have you had the dish?

Can you tell me any additional ingredients?


Hi Louise,

I cannot find a shrimp spaghetti or a shrimp pasta recipe that calls for filé powder. I also looked for a "gumbo spaghetti" recipe with no success.

I might have been able to find it by where you saw the recipe or where you had the dish, but you didn't reply to my request for that information. Perhaps you don't recall.

I'll post this for reader input.


Subject: Recipe Request
From: Louise 
Date: 4/12/2021, 7:55 PM

Shrimp Spaghetti was served at Margeurite's Restaurant in Morgan City, LA.
Contained shrimp, onions. garlic and file powder. 
Served over spaghetti.

Hello Louise,

Sorry, I cannot find any "shrimp spaghetti" or "shrimp and pasta" recipe that calls for filé powder. The only mention that I can find of Marguerite's Restaurant in Morgan City, LA is in a 1968 newspaper.

Timm, one of my readers, sent the below recipe for "Gumbo Pasta", which does call for filé powder, suggesting that you could omit the sausage and substitute spaghetti for the penne pasta. The result might be similar to what you remember.


Gumbo Pasta
1 pound penne pasta
1/2 to 1 pound shrimp
2 hot Italian turkey sausages removed from casings
2 tablespoon olive oil
1-2/3 cup chicken stock
10 garlic cloves, peeled
1/3 cup onion, peeled
1/3 cup green bell pepper
1/3 cup red bell pepper
1/3 cup yellow bell pepper
1/4 cup celery
1 teaspoon pure ground gumbo filé
1 teaspoon basil flakes
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
For the Topping:
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Handful chopped parsley
In a large pot start boiling water for the penne pasta. Boil pasta for about
7 to 8 minutes or until it's the softness that you prefer. Drain and set aside 
while you prepare your gumbo sauce.
In the same large pot on high heat add in your olive oil and chopped vegetables. 
The garlic, onions, bell peppers and celery should be minced not cubed. The 
vegetables are what makes up your gumbo roux so you want it to easily sauté into 
a paste like consistency; sauté the vegetables for about 8 to 10 minutes or until 
they form into a soft or pasty texture. Then add in the meat from the turkey 
sausage and begin to brown.
Once the sausage is cooked add in the chicken stock and begin building your flavors 
adding in the gumbo filé, basil flakes, cayenne pepper, granulated onion and garlic, 
and salt. Let that simmer and thicken for about 7 to 8 minutes then add in the shrimp. 
You can cut the shrimp in half so it's an easier bite. Once the shrimp is cooked add 
in the penne pasta and toss into the sauce cooking all those flavors into the pasta. 
Serve with freshly chopped parsley and grated parmesan cheese.

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