Sambal Shrimp

Sambal Oelek is one of my favorite pantry staples.  If you should ever not find it in my pantry, call someone immediately, for I am not well.  It’s an Asian fresh chile paste sold in most grocery stores these days.  I didn’t discover it until I lived in New York for a bit.  I still remember buying a bottle of it for the first time, not really knowing what it was.  I twisted the lid off, removed the safety sealant, and took a whiff.  I was in love.  I knew it would taste amazing just based on the intoxicating chile smell.  I swooned in anticipation of dipping a spoon in there and sampling it.  I adore the taste of it, and use it whenever there’s an excuse.  I will warn you that it is really hot and fiery.  A little goes a very long way.  I love it added to marinades, stir-fries, even curries.  I never use more than a couple of teaspoons at a time, if that much.  So imagine my surprise when I came across a recipe that instructed to marinate shrimp in two CUPS of this hot sauce!  Yes, you read that correctly.  Two cups.  Despite my slight nervousness, I knew I had to try it.  The results were delicious: plump, juicy shrimp with a wonderful sweet-hot Asian flavor.  The Sambal didn’t blow our heads off at all, but its flavor definitely shone through.  The shrimp were a gorgeous red color too.  I would definitely make these again.  Enjoy!

Source: Emeril Lagasse, “Emeril at the Grill”

2 cups sambal oelek
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup minced garlic
1/4 cup minced or grated fresh ginger
1/4 cup mirin
2 tbs fish sauce
2 tbs dark Asian sesame oil
3 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tbs chopped fresh cilantro
2 tbs chopped fresh mint

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients except the shrimp, cilantro, and mint. Whisk well to combine. Let sit at room temperature for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.
Place the shrimp in a large Ziploc bag and add all but 1/2 cup of the marinade. Allow the shrimp to marinate at room temperature for 1 hour.
Preheat your grill to medium-high and oil the grates.
Place the shrimp on the grill and cook until they are just done, about 2-3 minutes per side. You’ll now when the backsides are opaque and they are very firm to the touch.
Transfer the cooked shrimp to a large serving bowl. Add the reserved 1/2 cup marinade, cilantro, and mint. Toss well to combine. Serve immediately.

About jwall915

I love to cook and I love to travel! This blog explores my love of both. I share recipes and restaurant reviews, and I blog the trips I take.
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