Eat Like a Local

One of the best things about living in the Outer Banks is our availability of fresh seafood. From mahi to tuna to shrimp, there is something fresh during every season! For the adventurous who like to catch it themselves, all of the piers from Kitty Hawk to Avon offer excellent fishing year round with a constant supply of fish from Spanish mackerel and pompano to stripers and cobia that you can hook sans boat.

If you crave the swell of the water and the sea spray on your face, there are a variety of charters both inshore and offshore available through Pirates Cove Marina, Oregon Inlet Marina and Hatteras Island Marina. Every year the finest crew offers a one of a kind adventure for visitors and locals alike, ensuring you have the best experience whether you come back to the docks with flags flying (catch and release marlin fishing) , a stocked cooler (sport fishing for eating) or just a lot of empty beers (a bad day fishing is better than a good day on land). The captains and mates are all longtime local fisherman who are knowledgeable of the waters and have years of experience under their hulls.

To ensure you have the proper fishing license and equipment- visit your local tackle shop that can stock you with all of your necessary supplies, guide you to the appropriate bait and equipment for your day of fishing and head out to the shores to whet your line!

If you crave the bounty of the ocean but don’t have your sealegs, we have the finest locally family owned seafood markets from Corolla to Hatteras. Whether you shop at Dockside North in Corolla, Dockside N Duck, Carawans in Kitty Hawk, Billy’s in Colington, Austin’s in Nags Head, right off the boat in Wanchese, Surf’s Up in Avon or Risky Business in Hatteras- all of these local markets employ knowledgeable staff that can guide you to the freshest seasonal catch. Most have grown up and made their lives in seafood so take advantage of their expertise! My advice is don’t go in with a preconceived notion of what you are looking for, instead speak up and ask their opinion and be prepared to experience true Outer Banks living.

If you are looking for a surefire crowd pleasing recipe though, try these Dominican Shrimp De La Papi – my take on one of the most memorable seafood meals of my life that took place in Caberete, Dominican Republic. The fresh local shrimp are coated with a warm creamy curry sauce and finished with just a nod of Pernod to give them a slight licorice note. Trust me on this one, this dish pleases the palette of 3 year olds as well as 83 year olds and will make a memorable highlight to your Outer Banks vacation.


Shrimp De La Papi Dominican

1 pound of whole unshelled local shrimp
4 minced shallots
4 cloves garlic, or to taste
4 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon Curry Powder
4 Tablespoons Pernod or Anise Liquor (from the ABC store)
1 Cup Heavy Cream
Chopped Parsley
Salt & Pepper
Melt the butter in a large pan on the stove on medium heat. Once melted, toss in the shallots and garlic and cook until translucent and fragrant, about 3-5 minutes. Add curry powder and stir for about 1 minute.
Add the shrimp to the pan and cook on medium high heat on each side for approximately 1 minute until they are just slightly pink. As you are standing away from the pan, splash in the Pernod or Anise liquor and then tilt the pan to catch the gas burner flame or carefully light the liquid with a long handled lighter. Flambe the shrimp for about 30 seconds to burn off the alcohol and then add the heavy cream. Turn down the heat to low and bring to a light simmer. Season with salt, pepper and parley. Serve in a large bowl with plenty of crusty bread for sopping up the intoxicating sauce.
Serves 4-6 people. Double recipe as necessary.

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Hi, I’m Amanda, your Outer Banks beach ambassador. For over 20 years I’ve lived and loved the local lifestyle and want to share that perspective with you to make the most of your vacation.

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