It was time for something shrimpy again. We love shrimp, no matter how it is cooked. Even though we love all kinds of seafood, shrimp is one of our favorites. We don’t eat nearly as much seafood as you would think unless we are off diving though. The main reason we don’t eat as much seafood as we would like is because we prefer fresh seafood, and Colorado, being landlocked, in pretty much the middle of the country, isn’t really known for its “fresh seafood” unless it is trout. We do however make exceptions to frozen when it comes to shrimp or shellfish. Colorado is more of a rancher’s state, known mostly for its cattle, although we also have a lot of pork, lamb, bison, and wild game. All of which are fantastic.
When I cooked our shrimp this time, I was shooting for yet another Mediterranean styled dish. I think it came out more Moroccan though, and that’s OK. Morocco is still considered to be part of the Mediterranean. There are 21 countries that surround the Mediterranean Sea, and Morocco is certainly one of them. The Mediterranean identifies countries that have a coastline or cultural similarity. It doesn’t really matter to me what it’s specific origins were, since it is was really my own creation anyway. It was still just simply shrimp that was simply delicious.
I marinated the shrimp in a Mediterranean/Moroccan styled marinade for only about 45 minutes before skewering them and then putting them on the grill. If you are using kind of a marinade with any kind of acidic juices for shrimp, or seafood in general, the acids will “cook” (think ceviche) the seafood and if in for too long as well as being really cooked on top of that, the seafood and or shrimp will be tough and chewy. This is also a very Spanish styled shrimp dish, but Spain and Morocco border each other and their cuisines are very similar. You could easily use this same marinade for chicken too.
1 1/2-2 lbs large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 cup lime juice
1 TBSP garlic
2 TBSP lime olive oil
2 TBSP olive oil
2 tsp chili lime seasoning
1 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste
Combine all the ingredients together and completely cover the shrimp. Cover and chill until ready to use. As I mentioned above, do not let the shrimp stay in the marinade for too long.
I served my shrimp over couscous with a mixture of garlic, onions, spinach, roasted peppers, tomatoes and basil to give it a little more flavor and personality. I also served some warmed pitas and, of course, a cooled crisp chardonnay on the side.
Follow the directions on the package for the couscous. In a separate pan, saute the onions, garlic, peppers and spinach together in olive oil for about 3-5 minutes, or until the onions are soft.
Then add the tomatoes and basil and cook just long enough to heat thoroughly.
When the couscous is cooked, just add the spinach mixture to the couscous and combine mix together well.
I skewered the shrimp and put them on a hot grill along with the pita bread, which was at a lower heat. Cook the shrimp for about 2-3 minutes per side.
Heat the marinade in a saucepan and bring to a boil, then add about 1 TBSP of cornstarch mixed with some water. Bring to a rapid boil once again then reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook for an additional 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly.
When everything is ready, plate it up and spoon the sauce over the shrimp and enjoy.
This was a light dinner for us, but when the mercury rises, we tend to eat much lighter than we do when the weather is cooler and the mercury drops again. Besides, a light dinner allowed us to save room for popcorn later. 🙂
Stay cool, stay safe and stay well Everyone. ‘Til next time.