Peel-and-Eat Shrimp with Togarashi Spice Blend
Peel-and-Eat Shrimp with Togarashi Spice Blend Photo courtesy of Jake Gartland

Whether they’re sprinkled with Old Bay seasoning or dusted with a homemade barbecue blend, we’ve always associated peel-and-eat shrimp with the cuisine of the Deep South. At Atlanta’s new Seven Lamps restaurant, however, it’s an Asian twist that makes the shrimp sing. There, chef Drew Van Leuvan tosses the meaty shrimp with a Japanese togarashi spice mix. The blend is easy to make from scratch at home and, as we’ve discovered, is as good with steamed edamame and popcorn as it is with shrimp.

Makes 4 servings (plus about 1/3 cup spice mix)
Start to Finish: 40 minutes

Ingredients

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon ground ginger

1 tablespoon red-pepper flakes

1 tablespoon black sesame seeds

1½ teaspoons white sesame seeds

1½ teaspoons dried kombu seaweed (available at Asian markets)

1½ teaspoons dried tangerine or orange zest (available in most supermarket spice sections)

1¼ pounds shell-on shrimp (21 to 25 count), deveined

1 tablespoon canola oil

Salt

Directions

1. In a small bowl, whisk the cayenne pepper with the ginger, red-pepper flakes, black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, seaweed and tangerine or orange zest. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, toss the shrimp with the canola oil and season with salt. In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, cook the shrimp, working in batches, until pink and caramelized, about 2 minutes per side.

3. Transfer the shrimp to a bowl and toss with the togarashi spice mix to taste. (Reserve remaining spice mix for another use.) Divide the shrimp among four plates and serve immediately.

Finishing Touches

It's the details that count! Try these tips

  • To devein the shrimp without removing the shell, follow these tips from Sunset magazine.

  • Ingredient tip: Kombu seaweed can be found online and at specialty stores and Asian grocers. Grind roughly one sheet of the seaweed in a spice grinder to yield the 1½ teaspoons needed for this recipe.

  • The chef suggests serving the shrimp with a lime aioli, which is essentially a cup of mayonnaise doctored with the zest and juice from one lime.

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