RECIPE: GAMBAS AL AJILLO - MEXICAN STYLE!
This is a Mexican twist on a favourite from Spain.
Serve over quinoa cooked in coconut oil for an extra hit of flavour fusion!
PREP TIME: 10 min
COOK TIME: 15-20 min
SERVES: 4 people
FOR THE QUINOA:
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 TBSP olive oil or coconut oil
½ tsp salt
1 cup (190 g) quinoa
2 cups (480 ml) water
FOR THE SHRIMP:
1 sachet TASTE OF SANTA FE spice blend
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup (240 ml) olive oil
2-3 tsp (10-15 ml) honey, or to taste
1 lb (400-450 g) raw prawns, peeled and deveined
Plain yogurt or sour cream
COOK THE QUINOA
1) In a small pan, heat coconut oil over medium heat, add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes, just until garlic starts to brown.
2) Stir in salt, quinoa and water, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until fully cooked, stirring occasionally (12-15 min - see quinoa package for timing).
COOK THE SHRIMP
1) Add the shrimp, TASTE OF SANTA FE spice blend, garlic, olive oil, and honey to a large bowl and mix well to thoroughly blend.
2) Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat, and when hot, tip the entire bowl of shrimp and spice/oil mixture into the pan and shake out into a single layer.
3) Cook the shrimp for about 1-2 min per side, until pink, turn off heat and season with salt to taste.
STEP 1Add the shrimp, TASTE OF SANTA FE spice blend, garlic, olive oil, and honey to a large bowl...
STEP 1 cont'd....and mix well to thoroughly blend.
STEP 2Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat and when hot...
STEP 2 cont'd....tip the entire bowl of shrimp and spice/oil mixture into the pan and shake out into a single layer.
STEP 3Cook the shrimp for 1-2 min per side, until pink.
Turn off heat and season with salt to taste.
Spoon quinoa into individual serving bowls, top with cooked shrimp, taking care to also spoon in some of the oil and spice as the quinoa will absorb the yummy flavours from the shrimp and spice blend.
Further salt and pepper to taste as needed, garnish with a dollop of plain yogurt and fresh chives or coriander
Recipe & Photo Credit: Cathy Menees
You can cook the quinoa according to the package and you'll still get loads of flavour from the shrimp and spice blend. That said, I've noticed the coconut oil and garlic kick the taste of the quinoa up a few notches and just adds such a nice depth to the overall dish.
Sometimes I mix it up and I'll blitz a head of cauliflower in the food processor and serve the shrimp over that instead of quinoa.
You can use fresh or frozen - and go for the peeled and deveined option as that will save you a lot of time. I always keep a bag of frozen shrimp on hand in my freezer as this is such an easy weeknight meal that you can throw together in a pinch if you don't have time to pick up groceries.
SPICY, SPICY, SPICY
This is an intentionally spice-instensive recipe (bless the Spanish and the Mexicans) so if you like a little less heat (or you are cooking for young children) then skip the garlic in the shrimp and add a bit more honey - all to your personal tastes!
Speaking of honey...a little goes a long way to balance the spice in this dish. I recommend starting with 1 or 2 teaspoons and adjust as needed the next time.