Sunday, July 24, 2011

Jerk Shrimp with Mango, Red Onion & Cilantro Salsa

I was thinking about making some jerk chicken yesterday, but realized I wouldn't have enough time to marinate it (optimally, the chicken should marinate about 48 hours for all the flavors to blend). So, still craving something, anything jerk, I thought, well, why not shrimp? I combed through some of my cookbooks and found a recipe for Jerk-Rubbed Red Snapper and decided to adapt it for shrimp. It turned out great, except that Gilbert thought it was a tad too spicy with 2 serrano chilies (I had left the seeds in), so I revised the recipe to one serrano  instead. But for those who like it extra spicy, by all means add more chilies or even substitute with the more authentic Scotch Bonnets or Habanero peppers. I served the shrimp with some Mango, red onion & cilantro salsa and white rice on the side. I think the shrimp would also be awesome grilled - must try that next time around.

Mango, Red Onion and Cilantro Salsa:
2 ripe mangoes, diced
1/2 cup red onion, finely diced
2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno, serrano or habanero pepper, seeded and chopped
Juice of 2 limes (or 12 key/Mexican lime)
2 tsp. grated lime zest
1/4-1/2  tsp. salt, to taste (optional - omit if serving with a salty dish)

Jerk Seasoning:
1 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
4 scallions, coarsely chopped
2 Serrano chilis, sliced (leave the seeds in) or 2 habaneros, seeded
1 tbsp. fresh ginger, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp. dried thyme (or 1 tbsp. fresh)
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground allspice
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
2 packed tbsp. brown sugar
Juice of 1 large lime
1/4 cup canola oil

2 lbs. medium shrimp, shelled & deveined

White rice & extra limes for garnish

1. Combine all salsa ingredients together in a bowl, cover and marinate at room temperature for at least 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 30 minutes, place salsa in the refrigerator until ready to use.

2. Combine jerk seasonings & ingredients together in a food processor or blender. Blend/pulse until just smooth. Pour about 2/3 of the jerk marinade over the shrimp and toss well. Cover & marinate in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Pour the remaining jerk marinade in a small bowl & set aside (to pass around later after the shrimp is cooked, in case anyone wants some extra seasoning sauce).

3. Heat about 1 tbsp. of vegetable in a skillet over high heat. When almost smoking, use tongs to shake any extra marinade off the shrimp and add to the pan. Do not overcrowd the shrimp, so cook in batches if necessary. Let shrimp cook for about 1 minute each side to brown (btw, the shrimp will brown better if cooked in a stainless steel rather than non-stick pan). Remove to a plate and continue browning all remaining shrimp until done.

4. Serve shrimp with white rice, mango salsa, and reserved jerk marinade on the side.

Dice mangoes. This one happened to be a little underripe, but was still sweet so ok to use for the salsa.

A really ripe mango.

Chopped cilantro, red onion, jalapeno & 2 limes.

Stir all salsa ingredients together, cover & marinate at room temp. for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, put in the frig until ready to use.

For the jerk marinade: scallions, garlic, ginger, red onion, lime juice & serrano chili. 

Kosher salt, cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, thyme, allspice.

Mix all jerk ingredients together in a food processor or blender.

Add 2/3 of the jerk marinade to the shrimp.

Stir well, cover & marinate in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

Brown shrimp in batches.

Serve with Mango salsa & lime wedges.

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