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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Sweet and Sour Shrimp


D was in the mood for some shrimp. He had bought some deveined, shelled, frozen cocktail shrimp. So, I made this sweet and sour shrimp dish for him.

Now, I absolutely cannot stand shrimp (I've tried it a few ways), nor can I down any lobster or crab. Quelle Horreur, indeed! However, I don't mind salmon or halibut once in a while, especially if smothered in spicy rich sauce which masks the fishiness :-)

sweet and sour shrimp easy recipe chineseWhen we were newlyweds, D and I went garage-sale-hopping as we were unemployed then, or partially employed doing pizza delivery and such, and therefore could not afford many things.

That's how the 2$ Pressure Canner came into my life and has become an inseparable and invaluable addition to my kitchen.

Also, that's how the Bread Machine came into my kitchen too - was a steal at 20$ as another newlywed couple in Troutdale was selling their Wedding presents that were multiples.

And, that's how this treasure of a book called The Thousand Recipe Chinese CookBook by Gloria Bley Miller came into our homes. At 5$, it felt practically criminal to take it away from this sweet grandma who told us that she won't be using it much more and would rather give it to someone who would appreciate it.

Anyway, this sweet and sour shrimp is really easy to make and takes less than 20 minutes. Cook the shrimp as desired, make the sweet and sour sauce, then, throw the shrimp into the sauce and it is done. I served it with some home-made pickled radish and slit kung pao chilies from our garden that D likes, plus some lemon wedges for extra tartness, if needed.

Now the sweet and sour sauce is taken from the above-mentioned The Thousand Recipe Chinese CookBook. Many sauce recipes in this book are very easy to follow and turn out quite good.

Pickled Radish can be made ahead: Just slice some radish and place in a container, heat some plain white vinegar and salt, pour over the radish, set aside to steep for an hour or more; if not using right away, allow to cool, cover and store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

10-12 cocktail frozen shrimp, thawed, patted dry
½ cup cornstarch
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
2- 3 cups canola oil for deep frying

for the sweet and sour sauce:
3/4 cup water
½ cup brown sugar (or sugar)
½ cup plain vinegar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp soy sauce (low sodium)
¼ cup water

  1. heat the oil for deep frying
  2. combine the cornstarch, cayenne pepper, salt in a bowl, toss together till well incorporated
  3. just before ready to fry, throw the shrimp into this cornstarch mix, lightly toss with hands, throw into a colander and shake off excess mixture (if shrimp is allowed to sit in the mixture for long, it can get gooey and sticky, and won't be light and crisp when fried)
  4. deep fry till golden brown, drain on a paper towel and keep handy
  5. combine the first 3 sauce ingredients and bring to a boil
  6. combine the last 3 sauce ingredients into a paste and keep it at room temperature
  7. when vinegar sugar mixture is boiling, slowly stir in the cornstarch soy sauce mixture till well incorporated
  8. toss in the fried shrimp, off heat
Serve warm over hot jasmine rice.

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  • At 4:08 AM, Blogger Happy cook said…

    I loce sweet and sour shrimp. I have never made it the way you male it. Should try it.

  • At 9:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Made this tonight for dinner... it was great! Thanks for sharing your recipes!


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