The question is 'What's the big deal about this shrimp dish?'
I'll say the color and flavor.....I heard a few "ahhh"s and "oooh"s from my family when I set this plate on the dinner table!! Trust me--make this one at home and I can assure you it will be as 'dramatic' for you as it was for me. A recipe adapted from a well-loved tradional 'Singapore Chili Crab'. It doesn't have to be Crab to spruce up this spicy sweet sauce so I substituted some fresh shrimp instead. The sauce may look a bit too spicy for those of you who are a bit 'wary' of red chilis, but it is really pretty mild and a perfect cornocopia of asian flavors. Besides, it will get your taste buds tingling and your tummy very very happy.
Large Shrimp 2 lbs
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup corn oil
1 medium onion finely chopped
2 inch piece fresh finely chopped ginger
6 cloves garlic finely chopped
3-5 red chillies crushed
2 cups ready made thick tomato sauce in a can
1 cup water
2 Tblspn Soy Sauce
2 Tblspn Sweet chili sauce
1 Tblspn rice wine vinegar
2 Tblspn soft brown sugar
1 tspn chili sauce
The tomato and sugar in the sauce balances the heat out, so the shrimp absorbs the rest of the gorgeous flavors. As much as I tried, I've found it impossible to saute peeled shrimp in a hot skillet without overcooking them and making them tough. But then, the shell shields the shrimp from intense heat and helps to hold the moisture inside. So this time, I slit open the shell with a pair of kitchen scissors, deveined them and kept the shell on so the shrimp turned out perfectly cooked while the sauce found its way between the shell and shrimp, keeping them moist and juicy. I'm getting hungry just talking about it :)
Let's get down to make it..............
1. Devein, shell, clean and wash the shrimp. Leave the shell on for added flavor if you prefer.
Drain well, dust off with flour all overshake off any excess.
2. Heat about 2 Tblspn oil in a Wok and cook the shrimp gently turning until it turns red.
3. Remove and set aside. Add the remaining oil to the wok, cook the onion, ginger, garlic and chillies
for about 5-7 mins or until soft.
4. Add tomato sauce, vinegar, water, soy sauce, chili sauces, vinegar and brown sugar. Bring to boil
and cook for 15 mins. Slowly add the shrimp back into the wok and simmer for 5 mins until thick,
do not overcook the shrimp or it will be tough. Serve with steamed white or brown rice.