Monday, October 6, 2014

Shrimp Tacos with Corn Pepper Salsa and Chili-Lime Sour Cream

The war here in Ukraine continues, but it's calm where we are and people still need to eat.  So I'm choosing to put aside all the "possible invasion" rumors and the discouragement at the current political situation and just keep cooking.  So here we go....

Anyone else a little bored with standard ground beef tacos?  Or even mixing it up with chicken?  Here's a great alternative-- shrimp tacos.  It automatically elevates your family's "taco Tuesdays" into something special. 

So this recipe is the result of a lot of experimentation on my part.  I haven't had many authentic shrimp tacos for comparison, so instead of going the authentic route, I decided on the what-I-have-on-hand-that-tastes-good route.

So this is what I came up with.  I knew I wanted chili, lime and cilantro involved. I decided I wanted a corn salsa (easy to find -- a can in my cupboard) and I really like the sweetness of the corn against the saltiness of the shrimp.  Add cilantro and red bell pepper to the mix, and bam, there's your salsa.

Then to incorporate the chili and lime, I mixed that into sour cream.  Then just cook up the shrimp with some butter, garlic and a dash of cumin. 

Throw it all into a tortilla with some shredded lettuce -- mmm, mmm.  This is how I like shrimp tacos.  Try this version or do some experimenting yourself....

 The Step-by-Step

Make the Corn-Pepper Salsa

So after opening and draining the can of corn, we need to chop up the bell pepper and the cilantro.  If you like a little more heat, you can add your favorite type of hot chilis or peppers into the mix. Add a dash of salt and.....

 Lovely.  There, that wasn't too hard, was it?

Make the Chili-Lime Sour Cream

Now you mix up the sauce.  It's really tricky.  Ready?  Mix lime juice, salt and chili powder into some sour cream.  Done?  I knew you could do it!

Cook the Shrimp 

Now we are ready to deal with the shrimp.  Mince a couple of cloves of garlic.

Toss the peeled shrimp with a bit of cumin.

Cook the garlic and the shrimp together in some butter.  See how the shrimp have all turned pink and they are not so see-through-ish? (What? You have a better word?)   This indicates they are done.  

Don't keep them on the heat once they are finished cooking, if they overcook they'll get all rubbery and yucky. Blech. 

If you want, shred some lettuce and warm your tortillas.  Then assemble your tacos and devour.  Sooo gooooooood.

The Recipe


The Corn-Pepper Salsa
1 can of sweet corn, drained
1/2 cup minced red bell pepper
2/3 cup loosely packed chopped cilantro* 
1/2 teaspoon salt
(optional: minced chili, jalapeno, or other pepper, to taste)

Combine in a medium bowl.
(* cilantro, for you British and Aussie folks, is called coriander leaves where you live.  In Ukraine, it's in some large grocery stores like Metro and Novus and it's called "Кінза")

The Chili-Lime Sour Cream
1 1/4 cup (350 grams) sour cream 
4 teaspoons chili powder
Juice of 2 limes
1 teaspoon salt

Mix together until well combined.

The Shrimp
1.5 lbs (750-800 grams) uncooked shrimp or prawns, peeled
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons cumin
2 Tablespoons butter

Heat up a frying pan to medium-high with the butter in it.
Toss the peeled shrimp with the cumin.
Saute the minced garlic and the shrimp in the butter until all of the shrimp are cooked through and pink.

Assemble tacos with the corn salsa, the sour cream sauce, the shrimp and shredded lettuce, if desired.