Saturday, November 14, 2009
Asian BBQ Shrimp with Asian Slaw
What do you do when you only have an hour to make a dish to take over to a friend's house?
Just kidding. Make Asian BBQ Shrimp like I did.
I was looking forward to going over my friend Claudia's house all week. She lives on the water, and it's beautiful. It was also potluck, so I was thinking about what I could bring over.
Thinking and doing are two different things however.
I had work commitments on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights, and thus no time to cook in advance. On Saturday, I also was at work in the morning until 2 pm. I had the wherewithal to take a 2 lb. bag of frozen large shrimp out of the freezer to defrost before I left for work, so when I got home at 3 pm, all I had to do was figure out what to do with them for the 4 pm party.
I decided to make an Asian style marinade with pantry ingredients, including hoisin sauce (Chinese BBQ sauce), soy sauce, and Thai sweet chili sauce. A 15-minute soak in the flavorful marinade and a 2-3 minute sear on a hot skillet made these shrimp a snap to cook.
While the shrimp was marinating, I made a quick Asian slaw out of shredded Napa cabbage, red cabbage, and carrots, which I dressed very lightly with a dressing of rice vinegar, sesame oil, honey, and Thai sweet chili sauce. I used the slaw as a bed for the grilled shrimp.
Everyone seemed to enjoy the shrimp, which were fine at room temperature, and ate it as a salad. If people chose, they could also take a piece of shrimp from the platter without the slaw and just eat it as a finger food.
Fast. Flavorful. Festive. I would say this dish is BBB-worthy, wouldn't you?
Asian BBQ Shrimp
2 lb. bag of frozen shrimp, large (31-40 per pound), defrosted
2 tbs. soy sauce
3 tbs. hoisin sauce (please use a good Asian brand and not the fake artificial-ingredient laden hoisin sauce in many grocery stores; if you're in the grocery store, read the ingredient list and pick the most natural one if you can't find Koon-Chun, Lee Kum Kee, or Kikkoman)
1 tbs. BBQ sauce (American)
1 tbs. Thai sweet chili sauce
1 tbs. honey
1 tbs. rice wine or sherry
2 cloves garlic, minced
Thinly sliced scallions for garnish
Mix together marinade ingredients. Rinse shrimp in a strainer of any ice residue and put in a bowl. Mix the shrimp with marinade and let marinate 15-30 minutes.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add a little oil to the skillet and lay shrimp down flat one by one, making sure to leave spaces between the shrimp and not overcrowd the pan (this will allow the shrimp to sear vs. steam). You'll probably have to cook the shrimp in several batches. Cook 1-2 minutes or until top side is getting opaque on the sides and on top and then flip over and cook an additional 1 minute or until opaque all the way through. (Note: you can also skewer these and cook them on the grill or just stir fry them in the marinade.)
Serve hot, room temperature, or cold, as an appetizer or main dish.
1 tbs. Asian rice vinegar
1 tbs. sesame oil
1 tsp. honey
1 tsp. Thai sweet chili sauce
1 tsp. soy sauce
2/3 medium Napa cabbage, finely shredded
Shredded carrots as preferred
Shredded red cabbage as preferred
(Other nice ingredients to add to this slaw would be slivered mango, nashi (apple pear), pear, or apple; slivered daikon or jicama; sesame seeds or ground peanuts; slivered chiles etc.)
Mix together dressing ingredients and adjust seasonings, making it sweeter, saltier, or more tangy as you prefer.
Mix together slaw ingredients and lightly dress with dressing. If there's a lot of dressing, strain the extra dressing out, so the slaw stays crisp.