So, Mr. Grumpy went to the Indians game this evening with his VERY BEST FRIEND IN THE WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD… otherwise known as his BFF… Mr. Salty. For your reference, here is a picture of the both of them, and their combined salty and grumpiness:
What does this mean that Mr. Grumpy is out on the town? It means I get to eat the things that Mr. Grumpy hates (i.e., shrimp) AND watch The Mindy Project without one of Mr. G's notorious grump faces. Yeah for girl's nights…
Now, I knew I wanted to make coconut shrimp because I had found this amazing recipe on Pinterest this weekend (from Tablespoon.com). However, I only recently found out that I like shrimp, and therefore had never made it before. At lunch today, I asked my coworkers for advice on how to cook them, and got some great advice (including how to devein a shrimpy, how they should be C's when they're done cooking, and how when they're cooked they should be a light pink color.) This advice would have been very handy had I not accidentally purchased already cooked shrimp at the grocery store after Zumba with Bill.
Here is my excuse. If you had been to Zumba with Bill, you would already know that he went for an extra 7 ish minutes today in class. So obviously, when I got out of class, I had what my friend Sara calls "Zumba Brain." Zumba Brain means that you lose the ability to function as a human being in the real world, and completely forget all advice your coworkers gave you at lunch… And have to have a police officer help you locate the grocery basket even though when he pointed to the ground, it was literally underneath your feet. Zumba Brain, people. This is a real thing, and it's extremely dangerous.
When I returned home, I was STILL sweating from Zumba, and had a half-pound of cooked, deveined, peeled shrimpies… and no dignity basically. But listen. The Steiner genes in me made me A) unbelievably stubborn, and B) adaptable to anything. So like any true Chopped Star-To-Be (aka, me), I improvised. (I feel like I say this a lot. A lot of cooking is improvising, people).
So, if you'd like to make it like the Tablespoon recipe – have at it. If you have Zumba brain, and you're tired, and you want some equally delish coconut shrimp in 10 minutes… try my recipe.
- To never ask the man at the seafood counter at Giant Eagle anything about seafood. He did not indicate when I asked him about the shrimp that they were already cooked. Now that my Zumba Brain is fading, I vaguely remember a sign that may have indicated that the shrimp were cooked… and potentially supposed to be used for cocktails. I digress.
- 1/2 pound of deveined, peeled cocktail shrimp (or 1/2 pound of shrimp, uncooked and undeveined, but since Mr. Grumpy wasn't here I was also really nervous about the deveining especially with what happened with the chicken wings.)
- 2 cups sweetened coconut flakes (find these in your baking aisle)
- 2 egg whites, beaten until soft peaks form (about 1 minute)
- 2 tbsp corn starch
- 1/4 cup pineapple pie filling (the fruity kind, not the custard kind)
- 1/4 jalapeno, chopped into itty bitty pieces
- 1 lime, juiced
First, preheat your oven to 400. Put your oven rack toward the top part of the middle, but not too close to the top or your coconut will burn.
Then, beat your egg whites until soft peaks form. I thought this was weird at first, but it makes the shrimp light and sweet, so just do it. Take out two small plates. On one, put 1 tbsp of corn starch. On the other, put 1 cup of coconut.
Take your shrimpies and follow the same steps until you run out of starch and coconut (eventually you'll use all 2 tbsp of corn starch and all 2 cups of coconut, but just keep adding more to your plate until your shrimp are covered):
- Dip in the corn starch, and cover the shrimp by holding it by the tail fin.
- Dip in the egg white mixture.
- Dip in the coconut, and press it into the shrimp.
- Place shrimp onto a parchment-papered baking sheet.
Now, once all your shrimp are covered and on your parchment paper on the baking sheet, cook them in the oven for 5 minutes on each side, until they are lightly brown. While they're cooking, combine the pineapple filling, lime juice and jalapeno in a small bowl. This is your sweet yummy dipping sauce.
Then, ENJOY (and brace yourself for getting judged in the lunchroom tomorrow for letting Zumba Brain to take control and have you buy already cooked shrimp. If you want to make this with uncooked shrimp, bake it in the oven 15 total minutes – about 7.5 on each side. According to my colleagues, you never, never ever ever want to overcook shrimp. I actually think my way worked because it was slightly pink and not tough.).