McAlister's is currently highlighting shrimp specials which are headlined by a new shrimp Po Boy style sandwich. Using my free lunch cards, I decided to try a Cajun Shrimp Po Boy and a side of pasta salad. This sandwich features a bunch of buttered & peppered shrimp coated with a chipotle mayonnaise and paired with tomato slices, lettuce, and coleslaw on top of crispy French bread. I'll preface my next comments by saying I enjoyed the flavors of both the sandwich and the pasta salad.
|The Cajun Shrimp Po Boy I was served today|
Now, part of my ethnic ancestry includes strong Cajun connections with southern Louisiana. While I'm definitely NOT a Po Boy expert, I've had a fair number of them over the years. The protein on a traditional Cajun Po Boy is almost always fried: fried shrimp, fried claims, fried oysters, fried chicken, and even fried alligator. This was my first shrimp Po Boy that was not fried. Additionally, I've never had a Po Boy with coleslaw. While it added a different, and somewhat positive, texture it is just not part of what I consider Po Boy. Finally, the Cajun spice or heat has always been part of the spices incorporated into the batter for frying the protein. Although a good Po Boy will need mayonnaise or mustard for moisture purposes, the use of the chipotle mayonnaise as the source of the spice/heat was just not what I was anticipating.
As noted in the preface above, the sandwich was a good sandwich and I'm sure I'll have another one at some point. However, this sandwich is NOT anything that I can in good conscience call a Po Boy. I'd encourage you to try one and let me know your thoughts!
And remember, happy eating is only a journey away!