This dish is bursting with flavor, especially the smoky chipotles. Feel free to adjust the quantity of red pepper flakes according to your taste, but the amount posted gives you a warm tingle in the mouth. Prep time does not include soaking time for the chipotles or cooling time for the shrimp.
- 3 dried chipotle chiles
- 1 lb unshelled raw shrimp
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
- 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
- 2 cups water (see recipe step #10)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 bay leaf
- 1⁄4 teaspoon dry chili flakes (or to taste)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seed
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 medium onion, cut into rings
- fresh ground black pepper
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
- lime wedge (optional)
- Place the dried chipotles in a small cup with enough nearly boiling water to cover; allow to sit 30 minutes to soften.
- Rinse shrimp under cold running water, and drain thoroughly.
- Heat 2 TBS olive oil in a large heavy skillet and add the shrimps (cautiously, as they may spatter).
- Toss the shrimps in the skillet until the shells turn pink, just a minute or two.
- Remove the shrimps with a slotted spoon to a bowl and leave aside until cool enough to handle (I put mine in the refrigerator for a few minutes).
- Shell and devein shrimp, reserving shells.
- Add the shells back to the re-heated skillet along with half of the garlic and toss until the shells begin to brown a bit, just a few minutes.
- Add the wine and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 2-3 minutes.
- While this is happening, drain the chipotles (RESERVING WATER) and mince them as finely as possible (I don't remove the seeds, but you may choose to do so).
- Add enough water to the reserved chipotle water to equal 2 cups; add this to the skillet along with the remaining garlic, chili powder, bay leaf, chili flakes and cumin seeds.
- Reduce to a simmer and continue to cook until the liquid has reduced by half; strain, and set the liquid aside.
- Wipe the pan clean, then melt the remaining 1 TBS olive oil and butter in it.
- Gently saute the onion rings until they are soft and translucent, and just beginning to brown around the edges.
- Add the minced chipotles and continue to saute for another 2-3 minutes over moderate heat.
- Add a cup of the reserved liquid and simmer until the mixture has reduced and thickened (though it won't really get too thick).
- Add the cilantro, if using, and the shrimps and season to taste with pepper; cook over a moderate heat only just until the shrimps are heated through (overcooking will toughen them).
- Serve over rice, with lime wedges for squeezing on the side, if desired.
This truly does wake up those taste buds. For our taste, I used the seeds from the chipotle chilies and left off the chili flakes. Served it over angel hair pasta topped off with freshly grated parmesan cheese.