Saturday, August 11, 2012

S is for: Sriracha Shrimp Cocktail

One of my favorite Twitter threads recently was when I tweeted this: "Sriracha + ranch dressing = Mind. Blown." I really was just so excited to share my new revelation with the world. I had no idea it would elicit the sort of response that it did. Replies came pouring in about everyone's favorite use for the spicy condiment.

Sriracha mayo, Sriracha on nachos, Sriracha on eggs, Sriracha meatloaf, and one of my favorites: Sriracha ketchup. (And did you know there's even a Sriracha cookbook?!) So when "S week" rolled back around I knew I had to do something with the beloved "Rooster Sauce."

Since I'm already a fan of mixing it with ketchup, cocktail sauce seemed like a genius idea. I also incorporated it into the seasoning for the shrimp as well...creating a spicy new twist on the popular appetizer.

I always keep a bag of frozen, raw shrimp from Costco on hand in my freezer. They are easy to defrost and can easily be used in a quick weeknight meal. My only complaint is sometimes they taste like they've been frozen. For this reason, I was intrigued by Alton Brown's suggestion for doing a quick brine before cooking his cocktail shrimp. This sort of sounded redundant to me...I mean, after all, don't the little guys swim around in brine their entire lives? I was willing to try. Alton recommends using equal parts of sugar and salt in some ice water for about 25 minutes.

Once time is up, rinse and pat the shrimp dry with paper towels. Preheat a sheet pan under the broiler. Toss shrimp with a little oil, sriracha, lemon juice and sprinkle with some Old Bay seasoning. (My new habanero olive oil was perfect here). Spread in a single layer onto the sheet pan and broil for two minutes. Turn the shrimp over with tongs and broil for an additional minute or until shrimp are opaque. Be careful not to overcook!

Transfer to a chilled plate and cool in the refrigerator. I couldn't resist taste testing one of them to check out if the bribe really did anything. I was shocked! It really did help. The shrimp were plump and "popped" in my mouth much like a super fresh one would.

As for the cocktail sauce, I basically just doctored up my normal recipe by adding sriracha and using lime juice instead of lemon. Mix up the ketchup, sriracha, horseradish, Worcestershire, lime juice and salt in a bowl. Adjust amounts and seasonings to suit your own personal tastes. Chill until ready to serve.

If you want to get all fancy, serve the shrimp in martini glasses with some sauce and garnish with a leaf of butter lettuce and a wheel of lemon. (Of course, it's perfectly acceptable to just serve on a platter too.) I loved this sriracha recipe and will definitely be making it again. What's your favorite use for sriracha?

Sriracha Shrimp Cocktail

by Jaymee Sire
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Keywords: appetizer sriracha shrimp cocktail sauce seafood

    For the brine (adapted from Alton Brown)
    • 1/4 cup kosher salt
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1 cup water
    • 2 cups ice
    For the shrimp
    • 30 raw, tail on shrimp (cleaned and deveined)
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 2-3 teaspoons Sriracha
    • Juice from 1 lemon
    • Old Bay Seasoning
    For the cocktail sauce
    • 1 cup ketchup
    • 1-2 tablespoon prepared horseradish (depending on how spicy you like it)
    • 2-3 teaspoons sriracha (again, depending on how spicy you like it)
    • Juice from 1/2 lime
    • Dash Worcestershire
    • Pinch salt
    1. Combine ingredients for brine. Place cleaned shrimp into a bowl with brine and refrigerate mixture for 20 to 25 minutes.
    2. Place a baking sheet under oven broiler and preheat for 5 minutes. Remove shrimp from brine and drain. Rinse under cold water and dry on paper towels. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with olive oil, Sriracha, lemon juice and sprinkle with Old Bay seasoning, if desired.
    3. Place shrimp onto a sizzling sheet pan and return to broiler immediately. After 90 seconds or so, turn the shrimp with a pair of tongs. Return the shrimp to broiler for 60-90 seconds. Transfer to a cold platter and refrigerate immediately.
    4. Combine ingredients for cocktail sauce and adjust any amounts to suit your tastes. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve shrimp with cocktail sauce.
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    1. This looks delicious! Two of my favorite things: shrimp and Sriracha. Have you seen the Sriracha food table? So awesome:

    2. Such a good idea. I love siricha on everything. Definitely trying this, the family will love it over the holidays too when we have tons of shrimp cocktail!


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