Shrimp is the fruit of the seaBubba – Forrest Gump
Bubba already told us in Forrest Gump: shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it and much much more. We can’t agree more with him. My favorite shrimp dish? Or actually appetizer… the coconut shrimp with piña colada dip.
My first time on the Caribbean was at Aruba. Also known as the One Happy Island. I really didn’t know what to expect, except for sun, sea and sand. Where I really didn’t have any clue of, was the food. Was there typical Aruban food? And what would they serve us at the restaurants? I was going to find out soon…
The taste of vacation
One of the appetizer dishes they served on the beach side of the hotel were the coconut shrimps with Piña Colada dip. As curious as we were (yes my husband too), we ordered a portion. Just to share because there were so many other tasteful dishes on the menu! And it tasted delicious. Actually, it tasted as vacation. A real Caribbean, sunny, beach vacation. We ordered it many many many times again.
Home preparations of the coconut shrimp
Back home we were determined to figure out how they prepared it. Fried, that was for sure. But before frying them? We made many variations and kept on experimenting. Till we finally figured it out. It’s not exactly the same as on the island, we don’t have the same ingredients, but it’s close enough. Do you want the recipe? Read along!
The ingredients & the recipe
Check your fridge or freezer for large shrimps, peeled or unpeeled. Don’t have them? Go to your grocery store to buy them and bring the other ingredients with you: tempura flour, coconut milk, grated coconut, mayonaise, pineapple sirup and coconut sirup. Don’t forget the oil and a frying pan.
The coconut shrimp
Pour the tempura flour and coconut milk in a boil. 1 unit of each and enough to cover all the shrimps you would like to prepare. Stir it careful so all the clumps disappear. Roll the shrimps in the batter and place them on a clean plate. Take the grated coconut and sprinkle it over the shrimps. Make sure all batter is covered. Turnover the shrimps when you finished one side and sprinkle the other side.
Preheat the frying pan on shrimp mode or on 338 Fahrenheit / 170 degrees Celsius. Let fry for a few minutes till the crust starts to colour golden brown and the shrimps are cooked. Mostly it takes about 2-3 minutes.
The Piña Colada dip
Put two big tablespoons mayonaise in a small bowl. Pour a little bit of coconut sirup and an even amount of pineapple sirup in the bowl. Stir wel till all the sirup is blended with the mayonaise. Taste. Does it taste like piña colada? Than you are all set. If not add a bit more coconut and/or pineapple sirup.
Garnishing the plate
Take a nice plate. Not to large, not to small and put the shrimps on it. Place the small bowl near the shrimps on your plate (that’s why you need a small bowl). Or put the bowl with the dip in the middle of the table and go for a shared appetizer.
Enjoy the coconut shrimp!