Thursday, June 27, 2013

Shortcut Spicy Shrimp Bahn Mi

Last week I shared a new delicious veggie burger recipe, but this week it's time to get back to my "fancy" sandwich creations. It's not a stick-to-your-ribs, cheesy carnivore's delight like my last new sandwich, but a perfect fresh and crunchy hot weather meal. As the name indicates, I'm not claiming this is an authentic recipe, but the combination of spicy and pickled flavor definitely has the spirit of the bahn mi. I've always been a lover of cucumber pickles, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I began a love affair with quick pickles and expanded my repertoire to a much wider range of vegetables, like those used here. I've included a link to an easy quick pickle recipe that invites experimentation (I recommend adding chiles and ginger to start), but even the carrots and red peppers hanging out in jars of Vlasic Farmer's Garden pickles will add the delicious vinegariness this sandwich requires. The sour pickles contrasts perfectly with the spicy Sriracha mayo, boldy topping the succulent shrimp without making them disappear. No bahn mi would be complete without a sprinkling of fresh cilantro, joined by an extra layer of crisp flavor contributed by sliced cucumber. While this sandwich might not take you straight to Vietnam, it is an ideal meal for kicking back and relaxing in the sun on a warm summer day.

Shortcut Spicy Shrimp Bahn Mi
serves 1 to 2

1 demi-baguette or ciabatta roll
Olive or canola oil, or melted butter
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
4 ounces raw large shrimp, shelled and deveined
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 ounce pickled vegetables (carrots, radish, Daikon, cucumbers etc.)
1 ounce thinly sliced fresh cucumber

1. Preheat broiler. Coat the bread with a thin layer of the oil/butter and toast under the broiler until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, mix the mayo and Sriracha together in a small bowl. When the bread is toasted, spread spicy mayo evenly on top half of bread.

3. Preheat a pan over medium heat and add a drizzle of oil. When oil is hot, add shrimp to pan and season with salt and pepper. Cook, flipping once, until shrimp are cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes total.

4. Place shrimp on top of bottom half of roll and top with pickled veggies, cucumber and cilantro and serve.

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