Spicy Stir-Fried Shrimp

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I have to say I ‘m pretty impressed with my fellow interns and the sheer amount of knowledge that we all collectively know about art. Well, I suppose, since I’m the only non-art history major, I’ll leave the field of true intellectual scholarship up to them (although I’ve been known to dabble). I did a lot of heavy lifting today–one of those tasks that is time-consuming in a good way, but reminds you that you are, in fact, just an intern. There are a lot of good perks @ the Whitney, though, and looking at pretty books is never a waste of time. My fellow publications Lisa and I are actually trying to make @ the Whitney a trademark gift-guide series. I like letting the little things slip in here and there.

Anyway, after reorganizing several shelves of exhibition catalogues, reacquainting myself with Ed Ruscha, and discovering just how many volumes of Mapplethorpe we have, I got to skee-daddle a little early. So, what did I do? The first thing that came to mind was…cook! I haven’t made any real food in a while, simply because it’s so hard to photograph when it’s all dark-like outside and also because I’ve fallen into the working stiff’s pattern of either eating really quickly at home before going back out or getting a quick meal at a restaurant. At irregular hours. I know, it’s practically murder, right? Speaking of, the New York Times has a really interesting map of homicides arranged by borough, signified by dots. What a Debbie-downer.

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Anyway, for some reason when the weather starts to heat up, I crave spicy foods and ice cream. I think someone said that spicy foods actually help your body keep cool–something about readjusting your body’s sense of heat. I suppose that’s about right…if you think about it Thailand, South/Central America, North Africa, and India are all about the spice.

So here we go, spicy garlic and jalepeno shrimp stir-fried with some snow peas. Balanced, delectable, and hot. Love it.

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Recipe (serves 3)

12 deveined/peeled raw shrimp (31-40 ct/lb)

(marinade for shrimp once peeled: 1 tbsp Chinese rice cooking wine, 1/4 tbsp. salt, 1/2 tsp corn starch)

A generous handful of snow peas

1 jalapeno pepper (ribs and seeds removed if you can’t take the heat)

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 tsp. chili garlic sauce

1 tbsp. ketchup

1 tbsp. light soy sauce

2 tbsp. water

1 tbsp. canola oil

1. Marinate shrimp in above-specified mixture for about 20 minutes.

2. Mix together the chili garlic sauce, ketchup, light soy sauce, and 2 tbsp. water.

3. Heat 1 tbsp. canola oil in a skillet. When it starts to smoke, add garlic and jalapeno and stir. You want it to sizzle for a few seconds. Then add the shrimp. Be careful not to cook the shrimp all the way through, because you’re going to remove all this stuff from the pan, set it aside, stir fry the snow peas, and then add it all back.

4. At this point, once everything is back in the wok/skillet together, add the sauce mixture and stir-fry it for about a minute. If you want to thicken the sauce with a corn-starch slurry at this point, you can.

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