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A black and white Casablanca Soup Bowl holds a serving of grilled shrimp with a curry sauce served over rice.

Thai Inspired Grilled Shrimp with a Green Curry Sauce

Written by: Shawn Laughlin

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Simply grillled shrimp add a touch of smoky goodness to this rich green Thai-inspired curry sauce.

There's arguably no better way to serve shrimp than treating them to a quick turn on a hot grill. Perhaps the only thing left beyond grilling, then, would be the tricky choice of how to sauce or salsa those tender and succulent shrimps. Here's an idea that wins a spot on our table more often than we care to admit- and we're ok with that.


As usual, this recipe for shrimp meets our first criteria- it's got to be relatively quick and easy. Truth be told, I probably wouldn't be jumping to make this on a Tuesday night after a long day at work, but once you taste it, you might find the motivation. Otherwise, save it for a Friday night with a crisp, cold glass of a dry white wine, or serve these shrimp to a table full of friends on a Saturday night, and watch the crowd go wild!


There are a few easy shortcuts that simplify the prep for the sauce. In the grocery store in the "International" aisle, look for ginger garlic paste- a staple in Indian cooking, and a kitchen basic in our house. You can find our favorite brand on Amazon here. Seafood stock we buy from our local fish market, Captain Marden's. You can shop their market here.


Of course you can make your own fish stock, and we have included freshly chopped ginger and garlic in this recipe, but the taste will really come from the Thai green curry paste which we love, here, and which should be available in most supermarkets. Yes, you can make your own and it's not that hard, but I'm taking the easy way out in service of making the flavors more accessible on a regular basis. The whole goal of these shortcuts is to make this shrimp recipe something you can do quickly, with items you have on-hand and without compromising flavors, because once you've tried it that's exactly what you're going to want to do.


We love basmati rice with this dish, but it would work well over rice noodles too. If you've never tried Chinese black rice, this might be a good time to do it, and add the beautiful visual drama of that delicious black-purple grain, to the pink of the shrimp and the pale green sauce.


Using full fat coconut milk is going to make this shrimp dish more fully-flavored than using the reduced fat variety, but I will leave that up to your discretion. The white wine should be an assertive one as well, as the curry paste does have some heat (tamed by the coconut milk, so don't fret!).


When you sit down to a meal with this level of flavor and realize it's well within your wheelhouse, there's a great feeling of accomplishment. Layered and complex tastes begin with the green curry paste, then build with the addition of onions, garlic and ginger, the wine and fish stock, and the spice which dials up the authenticity of the dish as well. Tempered by the rich mouthfeel of the coconut milk, softened by the rice or noodles, it's a dish that seems way more sophisticated and complicated to make than it actually is. Top it with a shower of fresh-cut scallions and cilantro leaves, and it's a pretty impressive meal.


Here's hoping you'll try this shrimp dish, love it, and find inspiration to take your cooking in directions that challenge and reward you with complex flavors like this!



Simple grilled shrimp gets a glow up with this flavorful green curry sauce.

Pantry and freezer staples let you create a spectacular meal in less than an hour.

Sophisticated flavors layer on the spice with depth and complexity while coconut milk adds a sweet and creamy touch.

A man pulls raw shrimp from an Arcadia Vegetable Bowl to put in the grill.

Shrimp is lightly grilled, then wrapped in a spicy, Thai-flavored green curry sauce, enriched with coconut milk and a shower of scallions and cilantro for a meal that's truly memorable.

Grilled Shrimp with Coconut Green Curry Sauce

Thai-inspired Grilled Shrimp in Green Curry Sauce


Ingredients:

For the shrimp:

1/3 C. Olive Oil

1 lb. peeled and deveined raw shrimp (tails on)

1 t. red pepper flakes

2 T. freshly squeezed lime juice

Salt and Pepper to taste


For the green curry sauce:

2 T. unsalted butter

2 T. minced garlic

2 T. minced ginger (or 4 T. prepared ginger garlic paste instead of ginger and garlic here)

1 C. white wine

1 1/2 C. full fat coconut milk

2 T. Thai green curry paste (see note above- feel free to use a bit less for a more moderate flavor)

1 C. fish or lobster stock

1/2 C. fresh green spinach leaves

1 1/2 C. heavy cream

1/2 t. sugar

Salt and Pepper to taste

Sliced scallions and cilantro leaves for garnish


Method:

  • Heat the grill (or broiler) and in a medium bowl combine olive oil, red pepper flakes, lime juice, salt and pepper. Add the shrimp and toss to coat. Allow to rest for five minutes, then grill (or broil) for 2-3 minutes per side until shrimp are cooked through. Set aside.
  • In a medium-sized saucepan, melt the butter over a medium heat, the add ginger, onion and garlic and sweat the vegetables for 3 minutes. 
  • Raise the heat to high, add wine and bring to a boil, reducing the liquid until about 2 T. remains.
  • Add the coconut milk and green curry paste and bring to a boil, until the coconut milk is reduced by half.
  • Add the fish or lobster stock and reduce by 3/4.
  • Add the cream and bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes.
  • In a blender or food processor, combine the sauce and the spinach and blend for :30 seconds. 
  • Strain the sauce, stir in the sugar and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Serve over rice or noodles and the shrimp, garnish with diced scallions and cilantro.

* The sauce can be made up to 2 days ahead, covered and refrigerated. Reheat just before serving while stirring.


A black and white Casablanca Soup Bowl holds a serving of grilled shrimp with a curry sauce served over rice.

Store-bought ingredients like frozen fish or lobster stock, and ready-made green chili paste eliminate much of the prep time for this delicious Thai-flavored shrimp dish.

The warmth of chilis, the pungent flavors of onions, garlic and ginger, and the sweet, smoky goodness of grilled shrimp come together for a dish that dazzles both the eyes and the tastebuds.

A black and white Casablanca Soup Bowl holds a serving of grilled shrimp with a curry sauce served over rice.

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Shawn Laughlin

I'm a foodie turned entrepreneur. In love with delicious food and the moments spent gathered around a big, beautiful table. When I'm not behind my desk at Caskata you can find me in the kitchen, or the garden behind our newly-renovated mid-century ranch house.

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