Friday, 28 December 2012

Sesame Honey Shrimp with Chinese Greens

I normally try and blog at least one recipe a month, even if it sometimes feels I'm only really contributing towards my own personal online cookery book. (I did once get a lovely email from someone in America who had made the my take on the Hawksmoor blue cheese Hollandaise for her family, and no one had died eating it. Which was rather heartening.) It can be pretty useful to look back on though, especially for somebody like me who has a tendency to make things up as they go along and never usually writes anything down. But, during this season of festive excesses, my own additions to the culinary cannon seem even more redundant than usual.

I have decided to blog this very quick and easy prawn recipe, which was semi-inspired by all the great Chinese food we ate in San Francisco, (including the infamous honey walnut shrimp dish I'm having a hard time forgetting, and not for the right reasons). Luckily this is a much lighter plate of food and seems the ideal thing for Christmas time, when the fresh crunch of the ferrous greens and aromatic garlic, chilli and sesame seem like a welcome respite from all the pastry, glazed ham, cheese and chocolate truffles.

Best of all this doesn't contain any leftover turkey, and can be easily made from one of those frozen bags of prawns that are always on offer at all the supermarket come Christmas time - I always stock up so that a retro prawn cocktail or a quick prawn curry are never too far away. Apart from the veg, everything else is pretty much a store cupboard board standby (although feel free to substitute or leave things out, it would be pretty hard to mess a recipe like this up).

Sesame Honey Shrimp with Chinese Greens
Serves two

1 large bunch of Chinese greens (choi sum/gai-lan/morning glory etc.) or purple sprouting broccoli
Soy sauce and sesame oil to season
500g large prawns, peeled and de-veined (frozen are fine)
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp sesame seeds, plus a sprinkle to serve
For the marinade -
Thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 red chilli, de-seeded and  finely chopped
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp soy
1 tbsp lemon juice

Place the garlic, ginger, chilli honey, soy and lemon in a plastic sandwich bag, add the prawns (defrosted, if frozen) and coat thoroughly.  Seal bag, place on a plate and leave to marinade for 20 minutes at room temperature.
Heat half the oil in a wok, add the Chinese greens and stir fry for 5 minutes, or until the greens are cooked but still have some 'bite'. Season with a little soy and sesame oil.
Remove the greens from the wok, place in a warmed serving dish or individual bowls, cover and leave to one side.
Add the rest of the oil to the wok then stir fry the prawns with marinade until most of the liquid has evaporated and the prawns are coated in a sticky honey glaze. Toss through the sesame seeds and stir until thoroughly coated.
Uncover the greens, top with the sticky prawn mixture and an extra sprinkle of sesame seeds and serve.

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