“Hey, do you think you could come home on Friday for lunch?”
“You know you have asked me that four times already?”
Ooops. What can I say? I really wanted Mark to come home for lunch that Friday.
Most Friday’s my older kids go to their Aunt’s house. It gives me a day of relative quiet to get some stuff done, and this Friday I had a special plan. Making and photographing my new idea for shrimp.
I have always loved to order shrimp at a restaurant, but have hardly attempted it at home. When I went shopping after a far too light dinner and came home with shrimp among my groceries, I knew I needed to make something special. My previous iffy attempts did not overshadow the fact that it seemed like a really good idea. Don’t go to the store hungry… mmm’ kay? Unless it inadvertently results in this. Then it can’t be so bad.
That night I made half the shrimp for Mark and I after the kids had gone to bed. It was the first time I had ever made shrimp that I thought was really good. It inspired me to try again. I still had half a pound of the shrimp– enough for both Mark and I, but not for the kids. Armed with that bit of shrimp and an idea I was determined for a lunch “date,” just the two of us.
The shrimp is lightly seasoned with salt, cumin, coriander, paprika, oregano, onion and garlic powders. Then it is lightly dredged in tapioca starch. A quick sear in a hot skillet gives it a truly beautiful color, then the finishing touch is being tossed into a highly reduced shrimp stock. The tapioca swells up with the liquid leaving the most luscious, and slightly sticky, coating on the shrimp.
Note: I mentioned only having half a pound, and so did a half recipe for us. Just want to be sure I don’t confuse anyone when I call for a pound of shrimp in the recipe.
- 1 lb large shrimp, including shells, fresh or thawed from being frozen
- 2 tablespoons white wine (optional)
- 1½ cup water
- ¼ teaspoon each cumin, coriander, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder
- 1 pinch dried oregano
- ¼ cup tapioca or arrowroot starch
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- Coconut oil, avocoda oil, ghee, or bacon fat for frying the shrimp.
- Chopped Cilantro for serving (optional)
- Remove the shells from the shrimp.
- Mix the water and shrimp shells together in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil and boil for at least 15 minutes.
- Mix the shelled shrimp and seasonings together in a large bowl.
- Spread the tapioca starch out on a plate. Dredge each shrimp in the starch. Shake off excess. Put the dredged shrimp in another bowl or plate than the one you seasoned in.
- Heat a 16" skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium to medium-high heat with the oil, ghee, or bacon fat.
- When the pan gets nice and hot, add the shrimp one at a time. They should loosely fill the pan. You do not want to overcrowd or stack them. Let brown on each side quickly (about a minute or less per side).
- Remove the seared shrimp to a plate and set aside.
- Strain the shrimp stock into the bowl where you seasoned the shrimp. Stir to get any stray seasoning. Pour the stock and wine into the hot skillet.
- Boil for a few minutes until reduced by about half. Remove skillet from the heat and add the shrimp. Stir the shrimp in the hot liquid. The shrimp will mostly, if not completely, soak up the liquid. If the shrimp is still not fully cooked then return to the heat and cook for another minute or two.
Serve with mexican or cilantro lime rice, and refried beans.
Serve with a few side vegetables (pictured).
Serve as a shrimp taco with tortillas (or large lettuce leaves) and fixings.
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Pennywise Platter @ The Nourishing Gourmet