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Camarones a la diabla

Shrimp in a hot and tangy sauce. This is inspired by a Mexican recipe that varies according to the cook. Mine was, in a way, determined by the ingredients that I had handy, as yours should be too.

None of the recipes I saw online used shrimp stock. Whenever I cook shrimp, I save the shells (not true - If I cook shrimp with the shells on I throw away the shells after I eat the shrimp, but if I ever make a dish with peeled shrimp I save the shells) to make a stock.

I put some water in a sauce pan, added several smashed garlic cloves, some black pepper corns, some celery, some cilantro, a bay leaf, a little pizza sauce that I had left over (Made with "Furmano's" crushed tomatoes, an excellent brand), and as I peel and de-vein the shrimp, I throw the shells in the water. I reduce this down to almost nothing ... 4 or 5 tablespoons of shrimp flavor juice, let's say.

The dish is better if you're not in a hurry. That way, you can put the peeled and de-veined shrimp in a bowl with a little white wine. Soaking in the wine will make the shrimp puff up a bit, and they won't shrink so much when you cook them if they have been marinating in a little wine.

Now you have to make a sauce. Mexican recipes use a blender, to blend down the chilis (one of several varieties). I used a combination of pizza sauce, ketchup, my reduced shrimp stock, and (the secret ingredient ...!) Sriracha hot chili sauce, made from sun-ripened chiles. I think it is Vietnamese. I mixed these ingredients together in a bowl. Keep quantities down, you don't want too much sauce.

In a pan, heat some olive oil, throw in a generous bunch of minced garlic, and just before the garlic starts to brown, add the shrimp. The recipes I saw online seemed to give unreasonably long cooking times. After maybe only 4 or five minutes, I added the red sauce, stirred a bit, and the dish was done.

I served it with black beans (recipe for another day) rice, and broccoli



Sounds dang tasty. May have to try that soon. They always be selling whole shrimps around here pretty cheep and I hate to waste the shell. And you know I like it spicy! May even expand on the idea and throw in some fresh sea scallops. I don't take advantage of living by the Atlantic often enough. I like the idea of soaking them in wine too.
Viva Marco a la Diabla!

December 2018



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