Shrimp was on the list for dinner last night. I had a choice. I could use a packaged marinade and broil them like I often do or come up with something else. Serendipitously I saw several recipes that included Chinese Five Spice yesterday, and it got me thinking.
I took a quick look around and found several recipes that combined Chinese Five Spice, garlic, salt and pepper to season shrimp for pan frying. I added some homemade 2009 Viognier for additional flavor and to ensure the garlic paste I was going to use wouldn’t burn. I had already planned to serve a mushroom couscous and steamed broccoli with the shrimp, but that didn’t seem complete.
I continued thinking about Asian influences and figured that with a couple teaspoons of Five Spice and some black pepper the shrimp might have a little heat. I could throw some sweetness at the shrimp to keep things in balance. Plums! Something I had on hand to eat which would work nicely here. A plum and onion compote is where I landed.
Plum & Onion Compote
3 purple plums, cut into ½ cubes
½ medium onion, chopped
2 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
¼ cup of water
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp coriander powder
¼ tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
2 oz spiced simple syrup (2x syrup spiced with cinnamon, clove and allspice)
1 tsp rice vinegar
Additional cinnamon & clove to taste
Using a medium saucepan sauté the onions in the oil over medium heat. Add the plums, water, ginger and garlic and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the coriander, salt, pepper, spiced syrup and vinegar. Mix well. Continue to simmer until the plums are soft but not falling apart. Add additional spices, salt and pepper to taste.
Five Spice Shrimp
30 raw large shrimp, deveined and shells removed
2 tsp Chinese Five Spice
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp black pepper
2 tsp garlic paste
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 oz dry white wine
Clean and pat the shrimp dry. Toss the shrimp with the Five Spice, salt and pepper. Allow to sit for 15 minutes. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the shrimp and toss to coat with oil. When the shrimp begin to get pink Add the garlic paste and gently mix it in with the shrimp. Add the wine and cook the shrimp through. Immediately remove them from the heat and the pan to prevent overcooking.
For the plating I placed the shrimp overtop the plum/onion compote. The broccoli was steamed using a bamboo steamer and the couscous was the handy boxed kind found in the rice section of your local grocery. We generally season our broccoli with spray butter (Smart Balance to I Can’t Believe It’s Not) and grated parmesan cheese, although that isn’t shown in the photo.
I paired the meal with the 2009 Viognier that I used to cook the shrimp. This particular wine was not as aromatic as I had hoped, but in its later age and mellowing the flavors have come out a bit. It is a great middle of the road wine for a dish that isn’t very rich, spicy or complex.
This looks amazing! We usually have a bag or 2 of frozen shrimp for quick dinners, but I always seem to do the same thing, cook them with garlic and oil. This looks like a yummy change from that!
What fantastic flavors. The compote is such a great complement. Happy new year!
What a great combination of flavors, and a nice, light, healthy meal to boot! A glass of Viognier would be so nice with this.
Happy New Year to you and Margot. We are looking forward to finally meet you in 2011!
Love, love the flavors you did for the shrimp. Perfect for either dinner or appetizers. Happy New Year - much happiness to you in 2011~~
That plate of shrimp looks amazing! I love all those flavors put together - great job!
This sounds so exotic, flavoursome and delicious!
Happy New Year!
What a nice plate! Five spice powder adds so much character. Sounds great on shrimp, and I love the sound of that compote--yummm.
Happy New Year!
That shrimp looks DELICOUS! We took an oath to go meat-free for 21 days, beginning today... so I'm on the hunt for recipes that include shrimp. If I get around to making this, I'll be sure to report back. :-)
Happy New Year!
Looks wonderful, Jason. I love shrimp and five spice! And the couscous looks awesome!! Happy New Year
I have to say I am surprised, but so happy of course, at how quickly this post attracted attention. This meal was pulled together on a whim and really was great. I think there is a recipe in there for me in the New Year!
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