SHRIMPS are one of my favorite seafood in the world! They don’t only taste good, no matter how you prepare them; but they also look very good. They look good in photographs, making your mouth water, and so many shrimp recipes have made it to the cover of the magazine I work for, FLAVORS Magazine. It’s important for me that my food looks good because, as they say, you first ‘eat’ with your eyes before you actually get to taste them. What makes shrimps work is that they are great for both everyday dishes (just add a few pieces into your sautéed vegetables or noodles, and the dishes become special) as well as for special occasions such as Christmas.
For lunch today, I made Crispy Herbed Shrimps and served them with the bottle of Pantai Plum Sauce, a Thai product which I recently picked up from the supermarket, and the dish went very well with my Steamed Brown and Black Rice. Yes, I only serve brown rice at home, and this time, I mixed it with a little black rice. Perfect combination!
1/2 kg. medium-sized white shrimps
salt and pepper to taste
3 cloves garlic, crushed or sliced
2 tbsps. ginger, peeled and sliced
1-1/2 tbsps. Chinese rice wine or cooking wine
oil for deep-frying
cornstarch for dredging
1-2 eggs, beaten
1 tbsp. dried basil leaves
½ tbsp. dried oregano or thyme leaves
Plum Sauce, store-bought
1. Peel shrimps and remove head but keep tail segment intact. Prepare shrimps like you would when making ebi tempura, which is removing the small pointed edge on the tail and cutting off a bit of the rounded edges of the tail. Devein, make light slits on the underside of the shrimps, position shrimps with slits side down on a clean working surface, then lightly press down and pull forward to make the shrimps straighten up.
2. Marinate shrimps in salt, pepper, garlic, ginger and rice wine for at least 30 minutes.
3. Heat oil in wok.
4. Coat marinated shrimps with cornstarch, dip in beaten egg, and roll in Japanese breadcrumbs which have been mixed with the dried herbs.
5. Deep-fry in hot oil until golden.
6. Remove and drain off excess oil on paper towels.
7. Serve with store-bought plum sauce in condiments bowl.