Recipe: Shrimp Tikka with Fresh Mango Chutney
The past few days have been entirely too hot and humid for my taste. I enjoy many things about summer—the fireflies blinking and the crickets chirping during the evening, birds singing so joyfully in the cherry tree outside of our bedroom window that I'm wakened before dawn (but I go back to sleep, not being an early-morning type of person), flowers blooming everywhere...
(like this beautiful bed of phlox)
but I hate the humidity. With no air conditioning, my stove is turned off at the gas inlet because even the pilot lights keep the kitchen uncomfortably warm. Because it cools off a bit during the night, breakfast is now the only meal which I do not grill outside or microwave.
My friend Jenni sent me a recipe for Shrimp Tikka with Fresh Mango Chutney a few weeks ago and it has been lying on the kitchen table, waiting to be used. Unfortunately, the mango to be used in the recipe should be unripe and the mango which I wanted to use was very ripe. So, not wanting to delay until I bought mangoes again, I altered the recipe the slightest bit and made Shrimp Tikka with Fresh Mango Salsa Aside from not toasting the cumin (I mixed ground seed directly into the salsa), using a very ripe mango, and adding a half of an orange bell pepper, the recipe was not changed.
It was very good. The shrimp were a little to spicy for me, but Jack said that they weren’t hot enough (hmmm). I love the flavor of mango, ginger, and the spices in the salsa—it seemed to temper the spiciness of the shrimp for me (but not for you-know-who who likes all foods that sear the mouth…). Nevertheless, the marinade did wonderful, delicious, spectacular things to the shrimp and I'll have to use this same recipe with scallops and chicken.
Oh, and once more adjusting the recipe for the man who hates to “work” for his food, I took the fan tail off the shrimp. It would have looked nice, but then I’d be faced with answering the “why are there tails on my shrimp” question and, unless we have guests, Jack simply does not buy the “for aesthetic reasons” explanation.
Shrimp Tikka with Fresh Mango Chutney
Active time:45 min
Start to finish:1 hr
GOURMET June 2008
· 1/4 cup vegetable oil
· 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
· 1 (1-inch) piece fresh jalapeño, chopped (about 2 tsp)
· 1 (1-inch) piece peeled ginger, chopped
· 1 large garlic clove, smashed
· 2 teaspoons ground garam masala (Indian spice blend)*
· 3/4 teaspoon turmeric
· 1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
· 2 lb large shrimp in shell, peeled, leaving tail fan attached
· 1 teaspoon ground cumin
· 1 (3/4-lb) unripe mango, chopped
· 1/3 seedless cucumber, peeled and chopped (3/4 cup)
· 1/2 cup chopped red onion
· 1 to 2 teaspoons minced fresh jalapeño with seeds
· 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
· 3 tablespoons thinly sliced mint
· 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Purée all ingredients for marinating shrimp, except shrimp, with 1/2 tsp salt in a blender until smooth. Pour into a sealable bag, then add shrimp and marinate at cool room temperature, turning bag occasionally, 30 minutes.
Make chutney while shrimp marinate:
Toast cumin in a dry small skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Stir together remaining chutney ingredients with 1/4 tsp salt, then sprinkle with toasted cumin.
Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over hot charcoal (medium-high heat for gas)
Thread 4 shrimp onto each skewer, leaving small spaces between them. Put on a tray.
Oil grill rack, then grill skewers, cover only if using a gas grill, turning once, until just cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes total. Serve with chutney.
Shrimp can be cooked in a hot well-oiled large (2-burner) ridged grill pan, turning once, about 8 minutes total.
Marinade can be made 1 day ahead and chilled.
Chutney can be made 6 hours ahead and chilled.