It’s grilling season. Wahoo! At 6pm, out on my deck to take in the great outdoors, I sniff the wonderful scent of my neighbors’ dinners cooking. Steak, chicken, fish, veggies. Mmm.
I love my grill. Both of them—the gas grill and the little Weber charcoal one. I delight in cooking entire meals on them, night after night. How cool would it be to have an outdoor kitchen like the ones often featured in home and garden magazines? I would spend all my time there. (Until everything is snow covered.) Heaven.
Have you ever noticed how much more relaxing it is to grill your dinner than to cook it in the kitchen? You prep all the food, take it outside, put in on the grill and take a seat. Read a magazine and sip a cool drink while the meal is just cooking away. Sure, you have to check on the food, and maybe flip it, but it just seems so much easier. And, the clean up is almost non-existent.
Here’s the ultimate in outdoor cooking. My husband, sister and I took a wilderness survival course a few years back. (It was fun and informative and we saw a bear. “Cue the bear.” What are the odds? But, I digress.) Anyway, they taught us how to make a meal by cooking it in the earth! You dig a hole and fill it with hot rocks. Then layer vegetation, your food, and more vegetation. Cover the whole thing with soil. Doesn’t that sound awesome? I want to try it some day. (I married an Eagle Scout so I think I can get him to help me make that dream come true.) Again, I’m straying from the objective; let’s move on to the grilled shrimp.
This recipe is simple and fairly quick. It would make a nice appetizer or light dinner for you and your honey. Hope you enjoy.
Interested in other delightful shrimp recipes? Just visit The W.H.O.L.E. Gang Friday Foodie Fix.
Spicy Grilled Shrimp with Pineapple Dipping Sauce
1 pound large shrimp, cleaned and deveined (about 24-30 shrimp)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons lime juice
6 or 7 sprigs cilantro, coarsely chopped
salt and pepper
¼ teaspoon chipotle chile pepper powder
¼ teaspoon Spice Hunter Chili Powder Blend
The Dipping Sauce
6 fresh pineapple rings (1/4 to 3/8 inches thick)
2 large onion slices (1/4 inch thick)
3 or 4 springs cilantro, coarsely chopped
½ teaspoon Frank’s Hot Sauce
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon lime juice
For the shrimp: Rinse the shrimp, pat dry, and set aside. Mix the olive oil, lime juice, cilantro, salt, pepper together in a small bowl. Remove 1 tablespoon and set aside. Stir the remaining chili spices into the marinade mixture. Place the shrimp in a small bowl and pour the spiced marinade over the shrimp tossing well to coat. Let the shrimp marinate in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes.
Coat the pineapple and onion slices with the remaining marinade. Place them on a preheated grill set at medium heat. They may take about 8-10 minutes to brown nicely. Turn them halfway through cooking and remove when they are slightly wilted and have begun to brown.
Place the shrimp (skewered or in a grill type wok) on the grill about 4 minutes after you have started grilling the pineapple and fruit. Turn the shrimp once cooking them about 4 or 5 minutes total. The meat should be pink and no longer transparent.
The pineapple, onions and shrimp should be done all about the same time. Remove them to a plate.
For the dipping sauce: coarsely chop 4 of the grilled pineapple rings and the 2 onion slices. Place them in the bowl of a small food processor. Add the cilantro, hot sauce, salt, pepper and lime juice and pulse until it has a thick, chunky appearance. (Alternatively, you may just chop all of the ingredients to resemble a salsa and spoon it over the shrimp rather than using it as a dipping sauce.) Place the dipping sauce/salsa in a bowl and serve along side the shrimp as an appetizer or main course accompanied by rice pilaf and a tossed garden salad. Garnish with remaining grilled pineapple slices.
This recipe should serve about 4 people for dinner or 6-8 for appetizers.
Note: Fresh mango or peach would be a great addition to the dipping sauce/salsa. I didn’t have any on hand but would definitely try it next time. Also, the hot sauce is optional. This dish is a little spicy and if you prefer a milder version omit the chili spices and the sauce. It would still be a nice dish.