Maine Shrimp with Chipotle Chili and Pumpkin Seeds

A new column ran in PPH today on one of the cheapest and yummiest forms of protein in Maine, Maine shrimp.  One of the comments that came by email is below.  My response too.

Like the sound of  your Maine shrimp recipe on Portland Press Herald today,2/24/10. But do I leave the shells on having discarded the head? Seems a bit messy with all that nice sauce on them. Please advise.

I do tend to leave the shells on because I notice they don’t get so watery.  You could take the shells off and just go really carefully with the amount of time you cook them.  I personally don’t mind the rusticity of the dish with the shells on, but then I like to play with my food!

ME TOO- so I will leave them on!

Its been so warm here that I’m thinking of the garden often now

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Caramelized Black Pepper Shrimp & Jasmine Rice

While the farmer’s markets may be woefully absent (or hidden in churches and community centers) and the roadside stands that dot our rural roads may be bereft of the colorful vegetable stands of the summer and fall, there is still color beside the road and local food to be found.  The color takes the form of the shrimp vendors standing by the side of the road with their bright yellow and red parkas zipped all the way up to their noses.  The local shrimp is so plentiful that it’s tough not to indulge too much.

Caramelized Black Pepper Shrimp

16 oz. uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 teaspoon molasses
6 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 teaspoons grated ginger
2 teaspoons fresh Thai chili pepper, seeded and minced
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/2 cup fish sauce (nam pla)
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons grated onion

Combine molasses, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, Thai peppers, black pepper, rice vinegar, nam pla and water in a bowl.  Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Heat the oil and add the shrimp. Toss gently and add the mixture.  Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the shrimp is pink.  Serve with jasmine rice.

Serves 4

Jasmine Rice

2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup onion, minced
2 cups jasmine rice
4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt

Rinse rice in cold water until the water runs clear.  Drain.  Heat a medium stockpot over medium high heat and melt butter.  Add onions and sauté until translucent.  Add the rest of ingredients, cover and bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat and cook for 25 minutes.  Remove from heat and let sit covered for 10 minutes or until tender.

Serves 4-6

Glad to know local is just around the corner

© 2009 Anne Mahle