How to roast shrimp?
I usually saute shrimp but I've read a lot recently about roasted shrimp. What's the best way to do this as I don't want to end up with the dreaded c-shape chewy shrimp monsters? I have a lb of 16-20 shrimp and not sure what to do. I usually saute with some red pepper flakes, lemon, herbs, and olive oil but would love to hear your favorite roasted shrimp recipes.
There's a fantastic recipe for grilled/broiled shrimp in Marcella Hazan's Italian cookbooks.
Thread the shrimp (shell on) on skewers, coat with liberal amounts of bread crumbs, good olive oil, and tons of freshly ground pepper and salt to taste. Broil until the bread crumb start to brown, and eat with your fingers. I use panko and layer them on a tray, and cut the heads off first to make sure they're dead before I cook them.
I agree with the broiling recommendation above - high heat, don't over cook, and if you want to keep them straight, thread a skewer or sturdy wooden toothpick down the back (don't devein).
I find cooking with the shell on makes a difference - it makes for a slightly more robust cooking style (not as sensitive to drying out or over cooking).
This recipe was in the Minneapolis Star Tribune years ago.
1 cup sugar
2 1/2 t. kosher salt
1/2 t. freshly ground p epper
1 large garlic clove, peeled and minced
1 1/2-inch chunk fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
1/2 t. ground allspice
1/2 t. ground turmeric
2 T. unbleached flour
Oil for greasing baking sheet
24 jumbo shrimp, peeled, tail on
Juice of 1/2 a lime
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Grease a half sheet pan.
Combine the sugar, salt, pepper, garlic, ginger, cayenne, allspice, turmeric, and flour.
Dump the shrimp into the dry mixture, and shake to coat. Shaking off excess, place, not touching, on the baking sheet.
Bake until the sugar is caramelized, especially on the bottoms of the shrimp, for about 10 minutes.
Remove the shrimp from the baking sheet to a serving platter and squeeze the lime over them.
To me, they're sweeter when roasted, which is why I sprinkle a bit of cayenne on them in addition to S&P. Frankly, I kind of prefer them sauteed, because I feel they "absorb" the flavors as they cook (as opposed to dipping in a sauce afterward). I usually eat my shrimp nekkid (boiled) or sauteed.
The trick is to do it quickly at high heat. Get your oven preheated to 500 and lightly coat (don't submerge, either brush on or mist or pat on with your hands) the shrimp with olive oil (EV is best for this). I mix garlic salt, black pepper and a pinch of cayenne in a bowl and sprinkle the shrimp with that mix, holding them by the tail, on both sides (but you could use smoked paprika, a pinch of ginger, or whatever you like).
Put them on a cooking sheet and cook for NO MORE than 5 minutes...and this is for large shrimp...til they're just barely pink, because they'll continue cooking for a bit after you take them out.
Rather than roast, I usually broil -- i.e., the heat source is from above, rather than below. I start by mixing up some seasoned olive oil in a bowl large enough to hold the peeled, raw shrimp (seasoning could be identical to your sauté mixture except I'd omit the lemon), add shrimp, and stir to coat the shrimp thoroughly with oil.. Meanwhile, preheat the broiler. For ease of turning, I thread the shrimp on skewers, place on the broiling pan right under the heat source, and broil about 2 minutes on each side. Squeeze lemon juice on the cooked shrimp. Alternate to broiling, you can prepare the same way on a grill.