Thursday, February 17, 2011

Get some shrimp in your stew!

The first time my husband and I made Shrimp Stew with Coconut Milk, Tomatoes & Cilantro from Fine Cooking magazine was a couple of years ago, when I still worked an evening shift.
   When I arrived home I opened the door, and from the bottom of the stairs where I couldn’t see him, I asked him how he was. Silence.
   Then I asked him how the stew was. “It’s awesome,” came a quiet, contented voice as he ate.
   And he was absolutely right – this stew is terrific. The meaty shrimp is just perfect in the tomato and coconut milk sauce.
   It would be a nice dish for company, as it can serve a lot if required without a lot of extra effort. In fact, it’s extremely simple to make to begin with.
   Serve it with some crusty bread to dip into the tomato sauce.
   The recipe serves six to eight, so cut back if you don’t need that much (but the leftovers microwave beautifully.)
   If you can’t find the required jumbo shrimp, large shrimp will be fine. We use frozen shrimp and defrost it according to package directions before cooking. Also, diced tomatoes will work well if you can’t find petite-diced tomatoes.
   We didn't use cilantro.
   To make the stew, peeled and deveined shrimp is tossed with kosher salt.
   In a Dutch oven or large soup pot, red bell pepper, the whites of scallions (green onions), finely-chopped garlic cloves, and red pepper flakes are cooked.
   A can of drained petite-diced tomatoes and coconut milk are added and the mixture brought to a simmer. The shrimp is put in and the stew simmered some more. To finish, fresh lime juice is added and the stew is sprinkled with scallion greens.
   Serve in some nice big bowls!

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