Butch Cooking School, Lesson #2, Adobo Shrimp

Lateish one night the SL and I were curled up on the couch watching Anthony Bourdain tour the Philippines.  One of the items we fixated on was the Adobo style cooking that seems to run rampant in the country. It has nothing to do with South American cooking, except for the word itself, and when we watched how things were cooked in this method, which is a basic stir frying method including garlic, soy, and an acid (vinegar, citrus) we found ourselves salivating and knew that we were going to try this at home.

In the episode we learned that you can “adobo” anything (so feel free to omit shrimp and add veggies or tofu/seitan/tempeh,) but what we wanted most to experience was adobo shrimp. I wanted this to be a “savage” meal. By this I mean I wanted it to be something we had to dig into, eat with our hands, and basically make a small mess in the name of gastrointestinal pleasure. Kind of like what happens with lobsters, but um, spicier.  Also, it seems like everyone does adobo a bit differently outside of the base ingredients so…I augmented a bit towards the firey.

I served the shrimp over a small bowl of white rice, though I suppose it could stand on its own, with a veggie side, or some other starch – but the rice was delightful because it soaked up extra sauce and made for a happy ending. (Ha. I just made myself laugh out loud again.)  This is REALLY easy, and totally delicious  – I give you Adobo Shrimp, Butch style.

Ingredients:  – this will serve 2 really hungry people

1 pound 16/20 shrimp (shell on, raw, most likely will have been previously frozen. This is fine – if you’re adventurous then keep heads too, they’re yummy)

3 cloves garlic minced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

Juice of one lime

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1 teaspoon instant dissolve sugar (or regular, if you have to, I find the instant cooks down nicer)

1 teaspoon sambal oelek paste (or not, this is a to taste thing)

1 really generous long squirt of sriracha (again, to your liking)

Generous pinch kosher salt

Vegetable oil – just enough to slick up (hahahaha) the bottom of the wok/pan

Fresh ground pepper

Chopped fresh cilantro to garnish

Cooking goes really fast so it’s helpful to have all ingredients at the ready, near the stove:

1- Clean Shrimp:  under cold water run knife edge from top of shrimp back towards tail so you can remove the vein but also keep the shell intact.

2- Heat up your wok/big frying pan with somewhat high sides. Coat with vegetable oil, and keep at a medium/med-high setting.

3- Toss in garlic and sauté for about 10 seconds, stirring to get it all coated w/ oil.

4- Shrimp go in. Toss in pan (or stir if you’re lacking confidence)

5- In goes the vinegar, lime juice, sambal, and soy. Continue moving things around in the pan.

6- Sprinkle in the salt and sugar, give a few good grinds (or more than a few if you like) of black pepper.

7- Just as the shrimp start turning pink and feeling more firm to the touch, squirt (haha) in your desired amount of sriracha.

8- Turn up heat and cook on high for about one more minute, continually tossing/stirring items in pan. It’s important to NOT overcook the shrimp so you know, if you’ve done the other steps slowly, you can go right to the plate before this step. Throw the cilantro on top after plating.

SERVE. Have lots of napkins. Delicious. So good. So Spicy. Perfect with beer or a Riesling that’s on the dry side. The SL says she’d eat this EVERY DAY with complete happiness if I served it to her.
What’s your favorite “savage” food?


4 Responses to “Butch Cooking School, Lesson #2, Adobo Shrimp”

  1. YUM!!! Have been craving shrimp and love sriracha. I have to try this.

    My girl and I have recently discovered the joy that is broiled grapefruit. Cut a juicy pink grapefruit in half and drizzle with plenty of high quality honey. Sprinkle with cinnamon if you like that– I do. Put it on a piece of foil on top of a cookie sheet under the broiler and watch. I forget how long it takes. When the edges start to brown, take it out. It’s messy. Scrape the juice and honey that has run over the sizes off the foil and drizzle over the fruit.

    Best way to eat it is cut in fourths with a sharp knife and then tear in with your hands and mouth. You’ll even want to eat the pips. It’s all delicious and incredibly sexy. Great compliment to a light dinner. You won’t be weighed down and will definitely want to take things to the bedroom after.

  2. […] excellently paired with light meals, salads, fish, and Asian cuisine. It’s PERFECT with the Filipino Adobo Shrimp that I gave you the recipe for a few months ago, and seriously, it’s […]

  3. Generic Brown Person Says:

    “Savage”? Are you serious?!

    • I’ll own up to my own racism when it pops up – but know in this case that I also refer to the verb definition – the tearing apart with hands.

      “–verb (used with object)
      to assault and maul by biting, rending, goring, etc.; tear at or mutilate: numerous sheep savaged by dogs.”

      I love this kind of eating, and throw that term on lobster eating, crabs, and the Christmas eve dinner of my Father’s culture.

      I thought I explained my definition of that in the post – will do better next time.

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