Seriously Good Grilled Lemon Shrimp
My previous solution to improve less-than-stellar shrimp was to fry them into crispy, golden submission. I still stand by that completely delicious method (who doesn’t like fried shrimp?), but I now offer a lighter, less messy – grilled! – option as well. And it is good, like seriously good. Here’s the skinny.
This is yet another recipe from America’s Test Kitchen/Cook’s Illustrated Light & Healthy 2010 (The Year’s Best Recipes Lightened Up). Can you tell I’ve enjoyed perusing it? I bought their pitch for maximizing flavor by 1) butterflying the shrimp to expose them to as much marinade (flavor!) as possible, and 2) giving one side of the skewered shrimp a light sprinkling of sugar to achieve a nice crusty glaze.
Both ideas work beautifully – the brief marinade improves the texture and adds big flavor, and the sugar gives a pretty, tasty char. I served them over grilled toasts to soak up the additional marinade I spooned over them, and had to fight my husband off the few I photographed. Back off, man! (They’d rock alongside rice as well.)
Grilled Lemon Shrimp
From America’s Test Kitchen Light & Healthy 2010
3/4 c. fresh lemon juice plus 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/4 c. chopped fresh parsley
2 Tbsp. olive oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 1/2 lbs. extra-large shrimp (21-25 per lb), peeled, deveined, and butterflied
1/2 tsp. sugar (skip of you’re avoiding sugar)
1. For the marinade: Combine the lemon juice, zest, parsley, oil, garlic, salt, and pepper flakes in a medium bowl. Measure and reserve 2 Tbsp. of the marinade for serving.
2. For the shrimp: Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels, add them to the bowl with the remaining marinade, and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes (no longer). Remove the shrimp from the marinade and thread onto skewers. Sprinkle one side of the shrimp with the sugar.
3. Heat grill to high heat. Clean and oil the cooking grate. Place the shrimp, sugared side down, on the grill. Cook until lightly charred, 3-4 minutes.
4. Flip the shrimp and slide to a cooler part of the grill or turn off gas. Cover and continue cooking the shrimp until the second side is no longer translucent, 1-2 minutes longer.
5. Remove the shrimp from the skewers, toss with the reserved marinade, and serve.