Tag Archives: shrimp

Beer Battered Lime Shrimp Tacos with Slaw

5 May

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

I am mildly obsessed with Mexican food.  Ok, not mildly.  Mexican food is my absolute favorite and I could die happy if the only thing I could eat for the rest of my life was chips and salsa and enchiladas.

Now that that’s out of my system, here is a somewhat Mexican recipe.  Haha.  I claim to be no authentic Mexican food expert, however, I tend to cook a lot of Mexican/Southwestern-inspired dishes.  I like making salsas and slaws  to serve atop everything (like this fish) and generally using a corn tortilla as a vehicle to eat pretty much anything (trivia time: did you know huevos rancheros is my favorite breakfast dish ever?! Ever since I tried this recipe, I’m a convert.  Sorry Mr. Benedict.)

This recipe came about because I wanted to come up with a way to use some of my Persian Lime olive oil (I know, oh la la), which was a gift from my fellow-foodie aunt:

Lime olive oil is definitely not a requirement of this recipe, but you may want to up the lime juice or zest in the recipe if you are as much of a lime-lover as me.  The olive oil is from D’Avolio if anyone is interested.  They have all sorts of fun flavors of olive oils and vinegars (I also have the peach white balsamic vinegar and it’s awesome in salad dressings, mmm).  So fun. 

So basically I wanted to come up with a use for my olive oil and I was in the mood for something summery and refreshing and well, Mexican.  Shrimp was a logical choice, and just to up the ante, I beer-battered them.  And shallow fried them.  In lime olive oil.  Ahhhh it was so delicious!!  And so surprisingly easy.  Did you know you can make a beer batter with just equal parts beer and flour?!  Who knew.  Well, I figured it out. And now I’m all excited to try different beer varieties and beer batter everything in sight (think about it – something like an IPA or a more fruity beer like Blue Moon would probably be awesome).  The batter will be really thick, but that means it will make a great coating.  I highly recommend trying this, because it’s awesome.  And super low-calorie.  Just kidding :-D

 When I eat something a little more gluttonous, I somehow justify it to myself by topping it with vegetables.  Specifically, broccoli slaw. 

In general, I much prefer topping tacos with slaw rather than boring old lettuce or salsa.  I think I first got this idea from Bobby Flay – long, long ago I remember making some taco recipe of his and he used cabbage slaw (or something) instead of lettuce, and it was great.  Cabbage/slaw gives a great crunch, and you can marinade it to make it really, really flavorful, almost like a salsa itself.  In this recipe I went overboard with lime juice and acid and salt and it was wonderful.  But use this recipe as an inspiration – and know that you can use any type of cabbage or slaw mix and any other type of seasonings (just always make sure to use some sort of acid and some salt to help wilt the slaw a little bit). 

Beer Battered Lime Shrimp Tacos with Slaw

Time: 20 min. active and 30 min. inactive; Yield: 2 very large portions or 3 normal-person portions


  • Juice of 1 lime (~2 tablespoons)
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons lime olive oil (or regular oil if you do not have lime)
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Fresh black pepper
  • 1 jalapeno, seeds removed and minced (taste a small piece to see how spicy it is – if very spicy, only use half)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 of a red onion, diced
  • 6 ounces broccoli slaw mix (or any other cabbage mix you can find)
  • 6 radishes, very thinly sliced


  • 1/2 cup beer
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning (optional)
  • Lime olive oil (or regular oil) – enough to generously coat a fry pan, about 1/3 cup
  • 1/2 pound of raw shrimp (~4-6 large shrimp per person), peeled, deveind and tails removed

+ Corn tortillas for serving (6)

+ Queso Fresco or Feta cheese for serving, optional

Combine all slaw ingredients and toss to coat slaw well.  Allow to sit for 30-40 minutes for flavors to develop and for salt and acids to draw some moisture out of the slaw.  This will help is soften slightly.

For the shrimp, stir together beer, flour and Old Bay.  The mixture will be very thick and pasty.  If too thick, add slightly more beer; if too thin, add more flour.  The mixture should easily coat and stay on the shrimp.  Meanwhile, heat a saute pan on the stove over medium/medium-high heat with enough oil to generously coat the bottom (the goal is to shallow-fry the shrimp).  Season shrimp with salt and pepper and coat in batter.  Once oil is hot (you can tell because it should start rippling slightly), place shrimp in oil.  Cook until coating has turned golden brown on the first side and shrimp is mostly cooked through (~2-3 minutes depending on size of shrimp); flip, and cook remaining side for another 30 seconds or until golden brown.  Shrimp cook very quickly, so take care not to overcook them.  When they are pink and firm they are done – so don’t keep cooking them!  Remove and place on a paper towel-lined plate to soak up excess oil.

To serve, heat up corn tortillas (in the microwave with a damp paper towel – so they get moist and flexible and don’t tear).  Serve each with plenty of shrimp, slaw and queso fresco.


Shrimp Lettuce Wraps

13 Jan

Healthy eating isn’t easy.  For me, the best way to eat healthy, but feel satisfied, is by cooking very flavorful dishes.  And I also can’t skip on carbs or else I feel cheated (that’s why I had to include some rice noodles in these wraps, but they could easily stand without).

Hopefully this recipe does not come across as complicated, it’s really not!  When I developed it, it was basically me just throwing things into the slaw and marinade that I had on-hand.  So if you are missing an ingredient, just improvise.  There are no hard and fast rules – just make sure you have a good mix of acid and salt for the slaw (it helps it soften and get flavorful), and some citrus and spice for the shrimp.  And I apologize for the mediocre photography on this post – it’s hard for me to get good pictures at night (and wouldn’t you know it, dinner happens at night. Boo.).

Shrimp Lettuce Wraps

Yield: 2 servings, Time: 30 min inactive + 20 min active


  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar (a mild Asian vinegar that’s worth having – red or white wine vinegar will work in a pinch)
  • 1/2 of a lime, juice and zest
  • 1 tablespoon oil (vegetable or canola)
  • 3 cups rainbow slaw (pre-shredded cabbage, broccoli, and carrot mix)

Combine all ingredients and let sit, refrigerated, until flavors combine, 30-60 minutes.


  • 1/2 of a lime, juice and zest
  • 1/4 cup finely diced yellow onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon each: salt, cayenne pepper, cumin, ground ginger and coriander (or whatever you have on hand!)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 8-12 ounces of thawed, raw, peeled and deveined shrimp, tails removed  (*see below for shrimp-buying tips)

Combine all ingredients and allow to marinate in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.  After marinating, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a medium-sized skillet.  Pour shrimp and marinade in the pan, and cook until shrimp are pink and cooked through.  Remove shrimp and let marinade cook to reduce if too liquidy.


  • Lettuce leaves, 2-4 per person, depending on the size.  Ideally I would use Bibb/Boston lettuce, but it wasn’t looking great in the store, so I substituted iceberg
  • Rice noodles (or whatever kind of Asian noodle you like), cooked according to package directions and cooled (optional – I needed some carbs in my wrap ;-))

To assemble, place a generous heap of noodles, then slaw, then shrimp in the lettuce leaf and top with more sauce.  Healthy and delicious :)

*Shrimp Recommendations for Beginners

I like to buy frozen, raw, peeled and deveined shrimp with the tails on:

I like to buy them raw, because then you can control how you season them and how you cook them.  I prefer the already peeled and deveined shrimp, because it saves a lot of time, and quite honestly, deveining grosses me out.  Here’s a how-to video if your shrimp are not already peeled and deveined.   Usually I buy medium to large-sized shrimp, or whatever’s on sale ;-)

Jambalaya Pasta

9 Jan

This recipe was born out of a craving for spicy food and a desire to use up leftovers.  I had some uncooked Italian sausage left in my freezer from a different recipe, and I wanted to use it up.  I also always have shrimp in my freezer for quick weeknight meals like this.  I didn’t feel like making a whole pot of traditional rice-based jambalaya, and I thought making a pasta version would be quicker and just as tasty.

I must say that this recipe was super easy and tasted even better than I expected.  It was so flavorful and so satisfying, I was impressed with myself.  Haha.  Am I allowed to say that?  Anyway, I guess it’s ok as long as I share the recipe with you!

Jambalaya Pasta

Time: 30 min, Yield: 6 servings

  • 3 links Italian sausage (this is what I had on-hand, but any kind will work)
  • 3 stalks celery, diced small
  • 1/4 of a yellow onion, diced small (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced small
  • 28 ounces canned whole tomatoes, cut into chunks, juice reserved
  • 2-3 tablespoons Cajun seasoning (adjust amount depending on the spiciness you like.  I used Tony Chachere’s brand)
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon each thyme, paprika and oregano (optional, if you want to beef up the flavor)
  • salt and pepper
  • ~25 medium-sized raw shrimp, thawed if frozen, peeled and deveined (tails can be removed or not)
  • 12 ounces pasta (I used Ronzoni Garden Delight – delicious and nutritious!)

Cook sausage links over medium heat in a very large skillet, until browned and cooked through (if using pre-cooked, smoked sausage, eliminate this step).  Once cooked, slice into rounds.

In the same pan, after removing the sausage, saute celery, onions, garlic and bell pepper over medium heat until soft, using any sausage fat drippings left in the pan (if there are no drippings or you eliminated the first step, add about 2 tablespoons olive oil to the pan before adding veggies).

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions.

Once the veggies are soft, add canned tomatoes plus 1/2 to 2/3 cup of the reserved tomato juice.  Add in sliced, cooked sausage and all spices and seasonings, stirring to combine.

Then, add the raw shrimp to the pan:

…Cover the pan and let the shrimp steam until cooked through:

Once shrimp are cooked through (firm and pink), add the cooked pasta and toss all to combine.  Serve immediately.  This also reheats pretty well if you have leftovers!

*Bell Pepper Cutting Tip

I find that the easiest way to cut a bell pepper is to slice it in half, right through the stem:

… and then just use your hand to scoop out the seeds, ribs, and stems from each half.  Compared to other ways to cut them, you don’t waste nearly as much of the pepper.