Fried Shrimp Po Boys Get A Flavor Makeover With Diced Cornichons

The New Orleans culinary delicacy known as the fried shrimp po boy is traditionally piled with lettuce, tomato, pickles, and mayonnaise. Of course, there are many variations of shrimp po boys among home cooks and eateries across New Orleans. A simple way to elevate the taste and texture of the sandwich is to swap the average dill pickles with diced cornichons.

We get inspiration for this sandwich ingredient hack from our shrimp po boy sandwich recipe thanks to Tasting Table recipe developer Molly Madigan Pisula. In the recipe, Pisula incorporates the diced cornichons into the sauce. "Some po' boy recipes call for pickles as a topping, but I think chopping lightly sour cornichons and adding them to the sauce is even better," says Pisula.

In case you aren't familiar with cornichons, they differ from other types of pickles. You might have seen cornichons, which look like bite-sized pickles, on charcuterie boards. They're made from gherkins, which are closely related to cucumbers and the result is lots of crunch met with sweet and zesty flavors.

Diced cornichons make an ultimate shrimp po boy sauce

If you want to use cornichons in your next shrimp po boy according to our recipe, it's all about the sauce. Pisula 2 two tablespoons of diced cornichons mixed with mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, and hot sauce. This makes it easier to add the crunch in every bite since cornichons are rather small. You can add some of the brine to the sauce if you want more tang, skip the hot sauce if you have a low spice tolerance, or add other ingredients like capers, chili sauce, horseradish, sriracha, or a squirt of ketchup for more flavor.

To keep it simple, you could slice the cornichons lengthwise so they are flat on the sandwich and use plain mayo as your sauce if you're short on time but still want to use the ingredient. Alternatively, if this remoulade-style sauce makes your mouth water but you don't eat shrimp, use catfish, crab cakes, or even chicken cutlets instead. Consider sliced cherry peppers for heat, avocado to add creaminess, or swap the iceberg lettuce with arugula or chopped romaine if you want to spruce up the sandwich further. And if you have any of the sauce left over, we think it works on pretty much any other sandwich or burger you make this week.