Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Coconut Shrimp with Tamarind Ginger Sauce (Page 46)

RECIPE #1082

  • Date: Thursday, December 31, 2009 -- 7pm
  • Location: Westerville, OH
  • Kitchen: Karen and Dave's House
  • Dining Companions: Matty, Deniz, Brad, Dave, Karen H, etc...
  • Recipe Rating: A

My contributions to our New Year's Eve dinner this year were hors d'oeuvres and dessert. This recipe was the hors d'oeuvre I chose to make. I started by making the dipping sauce: I whisked together tamarind concentrate, lime juice, mayonnaise, honey, Dijon mustard, grated fresh ginger, and salt. Then I dipped peeled and deveined shrimp in a batter of flour, beer, baking soda, salt, cayenne, and egg. I then dredged the shrimp in sweetened flaked coconut. I deep-fried the shrimp in batches, cooking them in 2 inches of 350 degree oil. I lightly salted the shrimp and served them with the dipping sauce. Generally speaking I don't get too excited about shrimp, but oh my gosh, YUM! These coconut shrimp were awesome! The beer batter was delicious and the coconut added a wonderful sweetness and crunchiness. The shrimp were perfectly cooked and the coating was a lovely golden brown. I was a bit skeptical about the mayonnaise-based dipping sauce (mayo and tamarind seemed like a strange combo to me), but it was so, so tasty. It really went beautifully with the shrimp. I have had many a coconut shrimp in my life and these were hands down the best I have tasted. This recipe is definitely a winner.

The recipe is here.

I drove from Berkeley out to Palo Alto this evening to hang out with Emilee, Brian, and Sam. I left Berkeley a bit earlier in the day than I had planned because a big storm took the power out in the house where we are staying. No power meant no lights, no heat, and no internet. I worked next to the window for a while, but eventually I was terribly cold and I decided I would just head to Palo Alto. My early arrival in the South Bay gave me some time to drive around a bit. So I took a little tour through the Stanford campus. I visit Stanford at least once a year and every time it makes me incredibly nostalgic. It's funny -- I feel much more nostalgic on the Stanford campus that I do when I visit Madison, where I grew up. I'm not sure why that is. In a lot of ways the four years I spent at Stanford were very transitional for me. If there was one period in my adult life when I changed the most it was certainly when I was in college. California was so different from where I grew up in the Midwest, and my friends in college were so different from my friends in high school -- my college experiences really challenged the things I believed growing up. And maybe that type of growth and transition would have occured anywhere I had chosen to go to college. But in my memory it is so tied to Stanford -- tied to the people I met at Stanford -- that it is hard to imagine it happening anywhere else. So I do feel nostalgic when I visit Stanford, as though I am seeing the place where I really became who I am now. Visiting Stanford brings to mind the many people I met there who prompted that growth, some of whom are still close friends (e.g. Emilee and Rachel), but some of whom I don't really see any more.

It's always nice to be back in Palo Alto. I have a lot of great memories here.


GilaB said...

Any suggestions for some non-shellfish-y things that would go well with this sauce?

Teena said...

My guess is that it would be delicious on a wide variety of fried things: french fries, onion rings, vegetable tempura...