Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Gluten Free Spicy Shrimp in Chile Sauce

I've been experimenting a lot lately in the kitchen; using different kinds of GF noodles, and definitely spicing things up more than usual.  So far I've been super pumped with 3 out of the 4 new dishes I've created.  This dish uses fish sauce.  I've had a bad experience with fish sauce in the past, so I was hesitant at first adding the pungent, oddly colored substance. My bad fish sauce experience took place at a Thai restaurant. In order to assure that my pad thai didn't contain gluten, I provided my own gluten free soy sauce and fish sauce.  I don't know if they were offended or what, but my pad thai was so sickeningly fishy I almost passed out from nausea.

However this dish, which includes fish sauce, is ridiculously delicious!  It's a bit spicy but spice is good right?


  • 3 tblsp water
  • 2 tblsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tblsp sugar
  • 1 small onion (red or white), cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 2 serrano chiles, seeded and finely chopped 
  • 1/2 tsp chili sauce
  • 1 1/2 tblsp GF fish sauce (just check the ingredients)
  • 1 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 scallions, cut into 2-3 inch lengths
  • 2 tblsp coconut milk mixed with 2 tblsp water
  • Steamed rice (for a side)

Cooking Instructions
  1. In a small skillet, mix the sugar with 1 tblsp of the water and cook over high heat, stirring until the mixture becomes a dark caramel color (roughly 2 to 3 minutes). Remove from heat and slowly stir in the remaining 2 tblsp of water. Transfer the caramel to a tiny glass bowl (or shot glass).
  2. Heat a wok over high heat. Add the vegetable oil and heat until just beginning to smoke. Add the sliced onion wedges and chopped garlic and stir fry until just softened (about 1 minute).
  3. Add the shrimp and stir-fry for 1 minute.
  4. Add the chopped serrano chiles, fish sauce, chili sauce, black pepper, scallion pieces and liquid caramel and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally until the shrimp are pink (about 5 minutes).
  5. Stir in the diluted coconut milk, bring to a boil and simmer until the liquid is slightly reduced (about 1 minute).
  6. Serve with sides of steamed rice.
  7. Chow down and enjoy! :)

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