Saturday, June 12, 2010

Grilled coconut lime shrimp skewers...healthy and yum!

From the grill of Kristi Pustka...

The thermometer hit 95 degrees today, so Summer is finally here. I think we're past the June Gloom.

I had a raging headache all day today, and Don, my boyfriend offered to handle dinner. I was in the mood for something light and colorful for dinner and Safeway was having a special on large shrimp. What's a girl to do? This dish turned out perfect. the coconut and lime juice served as a great base for the marinade. Habenero provided the heat, and the cilantro gave the dish a light earthy flavor.

Let's get right down to business here. This is what you'll need:

The Marinade
- Juice from 1 coconut
- Juice from 1 lime
- 1 handful of cilantro, chopped
- 2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2-4 small spoonfuls of habenero salsa (can find it at your local Mexican supermercado) or 1/2 - habenero, chopped - Remember, this is hot stuff. Don and I love hot foods, you can always substitute with jalpenos or serrano chilis for less tongue scorching spice :)

The Skewers
- 1lb large shrimp, shelled and de-veined
- 1 Maui, Walla Walla, or other sweet onion, quartered
- 1 yellow bell pepper
- 1 Red bell pepper
- 5 whole mushrooms
-  1/4 pineapple, chopped
Any other veggies you want to include on the skewer

Preparing the Marinade
The coconut is the only hard part of this whole dish, that is if you don't know how to extract the juice from the cavity. Here's a tip. The top of the coconut has 3 holes, kinda like a bowling ball. Use a phillips head screwdriver and a hammer and to gently  tap the screwdriver into all three holes. Pour the coconut juice into a large zip-lock freezer bag. Add the rest of the marinade ingredients and set in the refrigerator for at least one hour.

Chop up and prepare the veggies. Here's a super important tip. If you're using wooden skewers you'll want to soak then in water for  at least a half hour before throwing them on the grill. This will prevent the skewers from catching on fire during cooking.

When adding ingredients to the skewer its always a good rule of thumb to make sure the first and last item you put on the skewer is either an onion or a pepper. These veggies won't fall apart on the grill making it difficult to flip over an remove.

Just Grill It
This should make about 8 skewers. I believe that you should make your own desision in regards to what order you assemble your kebabs. Throw the skewers on a preheated grill and cook on medium heat (about 400 degrees) for 8-10 minutes, rotating sides at least once.  Thery're done when the shrimp meat is pinkish and opaque, and firm to the touch. 

Oh my god this turned out so well! Be careful of making sure the shrimp are cooked all the way. If you pack the kebabs with a lot of ingredients, you may find yourself coming back out to the grill later with all the shrimop :) If that's the case, just let them sit on the grill for an additional 2-3 minutes. Sriracha (cock sauce) works as an excellent dipping sauce.

Given that my boyfriend cooked this, I'd have to say it's super delish. Our dog Bando certainly wanted to try it.

Now get out there and start grillin'!