When we think of culinary legends, names like Julia Child or Gordon Ramsay might come to mind. But there are unsung heroes in the culinary world who not only created mouthwatering dishes but also played pivotal roles in shaping the history of a nation. One such hero is Zephyr Wright. We’ve created our own spin on Zephyr Wright’s shrimp curry. Let’s check it out.

Who is Zephyr Wright?

Zephyr Wright was more than just a chef; she was a beacon of change. Cooking for the Johnson family, both in Texas and the White House, she used her culinary skills to bridge gaps and foster relationships. But her influence wasn’t limited to the kitchen. Wright’s close relationship with Lady Bird and LBJ played a role in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, making her a key figure in both culinary and civil rights history.

Read more about Zephyr Wright in our article, International Women’s Month: Zephyr Wright.

Why This Recipe?

In celebration of International Women’s Month and Black History Month, we’re revisiting one of Zephyr Wright’s signature dishes – the Shrimp Curry. This dish was a favorite of Lady Bird Johnson, the First Woman of the United States. Our version pays homage to Wright’s original while adding a modern twist with Hemp&fork Hemp Hearts.

Benefits of Hemp Hearts

Hemp hearts are a nutritional powerhouse. Rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, they’re great for heart health. They also provide a good dose of protein, making this dish not only delicious but also nutritious.

Zephyr Wright Shrimp Curry with Hemp Hearts

Recipe by Hempu0026Fork


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We trust you’ll relish our unique take on a timeless dish, Zephyr Wright’s Shrimp Curry. This culinary delight was a go-to meal for Lady Bird Johnson, who later became the First Lady of the U.S. To celebrate both International Women’s Month and Black History Month, we’re spotlighting one of Zephyr Wright’s culinary creations. Despite her low profile, we believe Wright’s contributions deserve recognition.


  • 1 lb raw shrimp, shelled, deveined, and thoroughly cleaned

  • 2 ½ tbsp butter (or olive oil for a healthier alternative)

  • ÂĽ cup onions, finely minced

  • 3 tbsp all-purpose flour

  • 3 tbsp hemp hearts (for added nutrition and a nutty flavor)

  • 1 ¼ tsp curry powder (adjust to taste)

  • ¼ tsp powdered ginger

  • ½ tsp salt (adjust to taste)

  • ½ tsp sugar

  • ½ chicken bouillon cube dissolved in 1/2 cup boiling water

  • 1 ½ cups milk (or almond/coconut milk for a dairy-free alternative)

  • ½ tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 2 cups cooked white rice (preferably Basmati or Jasmine for added fragrance)


  • Preparation of Shrimp: In a pot of boiling water, steam the shrimp for approximately 5 minutes or until they turn pink. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • SautĂ©ing Onions: In a medium-sized pan, melt the butter or heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced onions and sautĂ© until translucent.
  • Creating the Curry Base: In a separate bowl, combine the flour, hemp hearts, curry powder, salt, sugar, and powdered ginger. Gradually add this mixture to the sautĂ©ed onions, stirring continuously to avoid lumps. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the spices release their aroma.
  • Adding Liquids: Dissolve the chicken bouillon cube in 1/2 cup of boiling water. Slowly pour this mixture and the milk into the pan, stirring constantly to ensure a smooth consistency. Allow the curry base to simmer and thicken.
  • Final Touches: Once the curry base has thickened, add the steamed shrimp and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Stir well and let it simmer for another 2-3 minutes, ensuring the shrimp are well-coated and heated through.
  • Serving: Spoon the shrimp curry over a bed of cooked white rice. Garnish with fresh cilantro or parsley if desired. Serve hot and enjoy!


  • When steaming shrimp, ensure they turn a pinkish hue. This indicates they’re perfectly cooked.
  • If you’re health-conscious, feel free to substitute butter with olive oil or another healthier alternative.
  • For those looking for a dairy-free option, coconut milk can be a great substitute for regular milk in this recipe.


Zephyr Wright’s Shrimp Curry is more than just a dish; it’s a testament to a woman’s resilience, talent, and influence. As you savor each bite, take a moment to remember the incredible woman behind this recipe and her contributions to both the culinary world and the fight for civil rights.

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