Friday, June 3, 2016

Garlic Shrimp and Sesame Spinach

     Outrageously Tasty!
     Garlic Shrimp are popular in Las Vegas.  Chinese restaurants and buffets almost always offer Garlic Shrimp.  Garlic Shrimp are messy, fun, finger licking good food!
     Whole shrimp with the heads and shells attached are best for this recipe.  The rich orange shrimp fat behind the head is considered to be a delicacy.  Sesame Spinach is a nice accompaniment that can be used as a bed for the shrimp.
     Sesame oil is a product that requires reading the label carefully.  Sesame Oil that is used for stir fry is usually a blended sesame oil.  Blended sesame oil has a higher smoking point.  Pure sesame oil has a low smoking point and it is often added late in a recipe.  A few drops of pure sesame oil creates the same flavor as about a tablespoon of blended sesame oil.
     Chinese recipes usually call for tiny amounts of sesame oil.  Korean recipes can require much larger amounts of sesame oil.  Either way, it is when the sesame oil is added that counts.

     Sesame Spinach:
     This recipe yields 1 large portion.  
     Step 1:  Heat a sauté pan over medium heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.
     Add 1 clove of minced garlic.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced ginger.
     Briefly sauté for a few seconds till the garlic and ginger become aromatic.
     Step 2:  Add 3 1/2 to 4 cups of baby spinach leaves.
     Add 1 pinch of sea salt and white pepper.
     Add 1 teaspoon of lightly toasted sesame seeds.
     Stir and toss the spinach, till it starts to wilt.
     Step 3:  Remove the pan from the heat.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of pure sesame oil.
     Continue to toss the spinach in the hot pan till it is tender.
     Step 4:  Spread the spinach across a plate as a bed for the shrimp.
     Keep the plate warm on a stove top, while the shrimp are cooked.

     Garlic Shrimp:
     This recipe yields 1 large portion.
     Step 1:  Heat a wok or sauté pan over medium/medium high heat.
     Add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
     Add 12 to 14 whole large shrimp that have the heads attached.
     Add 2 1/2 tablespoons of chopped garlic.
     Add sea salt and white pepper.
     Add 2 pinches of crushed red pepper.
     Add 2 pinches of Chinese Five Spice Powder.
     Step 2:  Quickly stir fry and toss the shrimp in the hot oil.
     Stir fry till the shrimp are fully cooked and the shells are crisp.  The garlic will cook to a brown color.
     Step 3:  Place the garlic shrimp on the bed of wilted sesame spinach on the plate, before the garlic starts to scorch in the hot pan.
     Serve with steamed sticky rice on the side.

     The aroma of garlic will fill the house!  This is a fun garlicky finger food at its best!

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