Monday, December 13, 2010

Salt and Pepper Chili Shrimps

The winner (selected via Random.Org) of the Tasteful Selection giveaway: Joanne from Eats Well with Others. Hey Joanne, you will soon be contacted via email. :)

Have the shells on, please! Grilled or pan-fried shrimps taste much better. I made this after I tried something similar in my friend's place. Difference? She used shell-on shrimps vs these naked shrimps version. Of course I love shrimps with shell-on but I just did not have them handy that day :(

There are many ways and variations to Salt and Pepper Shrimps (椒盐虾 Jiao Yan Xia). Some cook them with salt and pepper. Some use salt, pepper and fresh chili, while my friend cooked them with salt, red chili powder and some freshly ground white pepper. Turned out delicious. So yummy that I decided to make my own.

Salt and Pepper Shrimps 椒盐虾
Ingredients: Fresh shrimps, shell-on, cleaned, de-veined; sea salt, freshly ground white pepper, red chili powder; flour for coating; a little oil for pan-frying

Directions: After the shrimps are cleaned, leave them to dry on a kitchen towel (or dab them dry with kitchen paper towel, before lightly seasoning with salt, pepper and red chili powder. Then lightly coat/dab the shrimps with a little flour. When oil in pan is hot, fry the shrimps by batches, making sure each batch is not over-crowded. When shrimps turn pink and the shells "crust/crisp up" (due to the flour coating), dish out and serve immediately.

I am providing a general recipe for my friend's version since I like hers better with shell-on shrimps and flour for coating. Oh, the other difference was that I used omega-rich Milled Flax Seeds (Note: I do not have plain flour or for that matter any kind of flour in my pantry)  - and that is the only powder-looking ingredient I have and I thought it was work well as the alternative. Not a substitute. I realized the milled flax seeds tend to crumble up as crispy bits while pan-frying. The chemistry of plain flour/coating flour is all different from omega-rich flax seeds. My version of Salt and Pepper Shrimps was not authentic but it was also delicious in its own flair.

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