I think I like fish and seafood more and more with each passing year. At least that’s what my seemingly constant cravings have been telling me. Especially when it comes to shrimp. No lie, I can’t get shrimp off my mind lately!
So you can only imagine the smile that came to my face when our family showed up for a casual dinner date at our friends’ home late this summer…and they treated us to an appetizer of Caribbean jerk shrimp. BIG shrimp. And they were super flavorful, with just the right amount of spice and happy tingle. I was in heaven.
Of course, I had to figure out how to do this at home, to get the same deliciousness as the pre-marinated shrimp that our friends had treated us to.
So I concocted a marinade while Blake soaked a wood plank in beer and lit the Weber. We managed to do away with a couple cold beers and a bowl of pistachios while we waited for perfectly hot white coals. Then we laid the shrimp on the barbie.
This plank of Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp was so fun to set on the table, a treat for my parents who were visiting for a few days. When grilled on the plank, the shrimp cook slower and turn out a bit saucier, with a hint of smoke. Simply fabulous.
But we weren’t done with this Caribbean jerk shrimp recipe just yet. Both Blake and I yearned for a bit more kick to the marinade. And I wanted to test the shrimp grilled right on the grates, for a drier feel and a little crispy char. So I swapped out the jalapeño used in the first round for a pretty little habañero, and altered some of the spice mixture. Blake grilled them just a few minutes per side, directly on the grates, to utter perfection. And we enjoyed one amazing plate of shrimp. No further recipe tweaking necessary.
As a tantalizing appetizer, gorgeous salad topper, or main entrée star, this Caribbean jerk shrimp from the grill is one memorable course to any meal. Please let us know if you give this a try!
- 1 lb. raw jumbo shrimp (16 to 20 per pound), peeled and deveined
- 1/2 c. vegetable oil
- 1/2 of a large habanero pepper, seeded and minced (more or less, for your heat preference)
- 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 T. minced fresh ginger
- 1 T. brown sugar
- 2 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. Mexican oregano
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. allspice
- chopped cilantro, flaky sea salt, and fresh lime wedges for garnish
- beer for soaking plank, if grilling shrimp on a plank
Place shrimp in a wide shallow bowl. Set aside.
In a small bowl with high sides, combine all ingredients from the vegetable oil through the allspice. Use an immersion blender to completely process until there are no sizeable pieces. Or use a food processor or blender. Pour marinade over shrimp and gently stir to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.
Set a large grill plank in a pan with sides and completely cover plank with beer. If the plank wants to float, simply set a bowl or something similar on it to weigh it down. Let soak for 2 hours. Heat a charcoal (using hard wood lump or regular charcoal) or gas grill to medium-high heat (about 475°). If using a charcoal grill, let charcoal get completely hot and white, and then level it out into an even layer. Set soaked plank on grate to get plank hot. When plank starts to crackle, which should take about 3 minutes, set shrimp on plank. Grill 5 to 6 minutes per side, or until shrimp are no longer opaque. Set plank on a pan and serve shrimp straight from the plank. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and a bit of flaky sea salt. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the top.
Heat a charcoal (using hard wood lump or regular charcoal) or gas grill to medium-high heat (about 475°). If using a charcoal grill, let charcoal get completely hot and white, and then level it out into an even layer. Oil grill grates well. Set shrimp on grates. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes per side, until shrimp are no longer opaque and have a bit of char. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and a bit of flaky sea salt. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the top.
from a farmgirl's dabbles
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