Friday, July 9, 2010

Batter Fried Shrimp

Fresh shrimp dipped in a batter, then in a seasoned flour, and fried to a golden, crispy crunch.
Fresh shrimp dipped in a batter, then in a seasoned flour, and fried to a golden, crispy crunch.

Batter Fried Shrimp

Fried shrimp is a Deep South favorite, no real surprises there. Batter fried shrimp is just another delicious alternative from classic southern fried shrimp that we enjoy in this area.

I use my freezer a lot. Not only to put up fresh tomatoes, blobs of tomato paste and fresh citrus juices, and fresh sauces, veggies, basil pesto, rolled dumplings, precooked chicken, and homemade stock, and really ... just about anything that can be frozen, but especially leftovers.

Course there comes a time when the freezer starts getting so full, I have to start working through some of it, so I've been trying to do that here recently. As much as I would love to hold on to my fresh Gulf shrimp, it won't last forever, so I decided to take a few of the larger ones we had frozen, butterfly them and deep fry them.

For the most part, when I make fried shrimp, I usually use medium sized shrimp and simply devein them and toss them in a seasoned flour, and reserve the larger ones for stuffing or grilling, but sometimes I'll leave the tip of the tail intact, butterfly them and do this batter fried shrimp.

Mise en place - you've certainly heard that here before.

Well, it is an especially important practice when frying shrimp.  They fry super fast, especially with a deep fryer, so you'll want to have the rest of the meal going.

Prepare the shrimp by peeling, rinsing, deveining and butterflying them first. Preheat cooking oil to 350 degrees F.

I like to set up a dipping station with everything lined up - the shrimp, the batter, the seasoned flour and a plate to place the shrimp on. I'm right-handed, so I reserve my left hand for dipping in the batter and use my right hand for tossing in the flour and plating. That way you keep your fingers a bit cleaner and you don't mess up the seasoned flour as bad.

In one bowl, beat the egg.

Beat in the butter.

For seasonings I'm using salt, pepper, Old Bay and Cajun seasoning. Mix the flour with the seasonings, remove 1/2 cup of the seasoned flour.

Add the 1/2 cup of the seasoned flour to the egg mixture and blend.

Add the milk to the batter.

Dip the shrimp briefly in the flour.

Shake off any loose flour.

Then dip in the batter, allowing it to drain well.
If you don't let the batter drip off, you'll lump up your seasoned flour and that'll affect the final product - which is a kinda good thing if you're doing strips of nubby chicken but that's another post!

Add shrimp back to the seasoned flour and place on a plate until you have enough for a batch to fry.

Slide shrimp carefully into hot oil.

Fry until golden brown, taking care not to overcrowd the pot.

Drain on a rack over a paper towel lined rimmed baking sheet. In just a couple minutes, you'll have nicely butterflied, golden, deep-fried shrimp!

Serve with cocktail sauce, comeback sauce, white remoulade, or a spicy mustard sauce, if desired.

For more of my favorite shrimp recipes, check out the collection on my Pinterest page!

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Posted by on July 9, 2010

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