Kitchen Diva

Get Fired Up for the Fourth

Celebrate Independence Day with spicy shrimp.
July 2017

Celebrating our nation’s independence with parades, speeches and a barbecue dinner is a long-standing tradition. Citizens in every part of the country would come to town for the celebration. They would form a line and march behind their local military regiment until they reached the courthouse square or church grounds.

A typical Fourth of July ceremony opened with a prayer, followed by songs and speeches from politicians before ending with a reading of the Declaration of Independence. Then everyone would join in for a community feast of barbecued meats, vegetables and desserts.

This recipe for spicy shrimp with charred poblano romesco is a great Independence Day appetizer. Serve it with some toasted, crusty bread or tortilla chips for dipping into the romesco.

Spicy Shrimp with Charred Poblano Romesco

2 poblano chile peppers, about 8 ounces total

1 small jalapeño chile pepper, stemmed, seeded and chopped

1/2 cup fresh cilantro sprigs

1/4 cup almonds, toasted

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 garlic cloves

1/8 teaspoon granulated sugar

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons Kosher salt

1 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

24 large shrimp (21/30 count), peeled and deveined, tails left on, patted dry.

Step 1. Prepare grill for direct cooking over high heat (450 to 550 degrees).

Step 2. Grill the poblano chiles over direct high heat, with the lid closed, until blackened and blistered, 10 to 12 minutes, turning occasionally. Place the peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to trap the steam. Let stand for about 10 minutes. Remove the charred skin, stems and seeds, and then coarsely chop the chiles.

Step 3. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the poblanos, jalapeño, cliantro, almonds, lemon juice, garlic, pepper, sugar and 3 tablespoons of the oil and 1 teaspoon of the salt, and process until well-blended but some texture still remains. Transfer sauce to a serving bowl.

Step 4. In a medium bowl whisk together the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 1 teaspoon salt, the paprika and cayenne. Add the shrimp and turn to coat in the mixture. Grill the shrimp over direct high heat, with the lid closed, until firm to the touch and just turning opaque in the center, 2 to 4 minutes, turning once.

Step 5. Arrange shrimp on a platter and serve with the romesco sauce for dipping, and toasted bread and/or tortilla chips for dipping. Serves 4 to 6.


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