I've been dreadfully remiss about posting lately. Naturally, I have excuses:
1.) We were dieting. Who gives a shit about diet food? Besides, I only post recipes here which hit a 9 or 10 according to our palates. Diet food contains no pork, caramelized anything, palm sugar, fat, good carbs, etc. Why the hell would it go on my blog?
2.) We finished dieting and vacationed in Houston (I know, right) and then went for a friend's 40th to spend a week in New Orleans being gluttonous pigs. (More on that later...got some amazing recipes there)
3.) We got MARRIED. Well, we made legal what we committed to in a very large, formal ceremony ten years ago. Since it is finally legal in Washington State, we became legally wed with our best girlfriends who have been together more than 20 years.
4.) Huge re-org at work. All went fine, but blogging was the last thing on my mind.
5.) I was a lazyass.
There. Now that we have that out of the way, let me tell you about these shrimp cakes. I was reading about the new lineup for the upcoming season of Top Chef Masters, and was fascinated with Sang Yoon, the Chef at Lukshon in Los Angeles. The LA Times magazine had a great writeup on him including this recipe, which has all the Southeast Asian things I love in one small bite: Spicy, Sour, Salty, Sweet, FRIED!!! We made it as a starter for an Asian-themed dinner last weekend and I couldn't get them on the plate fast enough for my gluttonous friends who were greedily shoveling them into their cavernous pieholes.
A couple of notes on modifications: I formed these into balls and fried them in oil in my wok, as the photo I'd seen of these as they are served in the restaurant were in balls rather than cakes. I think they probably simplified the recipe for the garlic-breathing masses (I hate when they do that)! Also, the recipe did not provide Chef Yoon's technique for the chile sauce with which these are typically served so I took the lazyassed approach and used a bottle of sweet thai chile sauce from the asian market.
These were so good, I'm making them again this weekend. You should too!
From: Lukshon chef-owner Sang Yoon.
Note: Yoon seves these with a sweet chile sauce (palm sugar, cilantro, Thai basil, chiles).
Makes: 1 serving, shared or not
2 pounds peeled and deveined white shrimp roughly chopped
1 1/2 ounces chopped ginger
1 ounce chopped garlic
3 finely chopped jalapenos (seeds removed)
2 ounces fish sauce
3 ounces Chinese light soy sauce
1 ounce lime juice
2 minced shallots
1 tablespoon ground coriander seed
1 tablespoon ground hot mustard powder
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
1 beaten egg
sea salt to taste
white pepper to taste
1/2 bunch chopped cilantro
canola or grapeseed oil for frying
1. Add all the ingredients except the cilantro and frying oil to a food processor and blend until a coarse/chunky paste is formed.
2. Remove from food processor and allow the mixture to sit, covered in the refrigerator, for 1 hour.
3. Mix in chopped cilantro and form 2-ounce patties. Fry the patties in a hot skillet with neutral oil such as canola or grapeseed until light brown on both sides.
4. Once browned on both sides, the patties can be removed from the skillet and placed on a cookie sheet to finish cooking in a 300 degree oven for about 2 more minutes.