I know you’re going to love making and eating this easy appetizer/meze offering. Shrimp has a wide appeal, its available fresh or frozen practically everywhere, it’s sustainable, easy to prepare and of course, delicious.
We’ve all had fried shrimp…begining with breaded and fried, more recently Panko bread crumb (from Japan) has entered many households and now I’m going to show you how to use Kataifi pastry as a coating.
Kataifi pastry is that shredded wheat looking pastry that you will often find beside the phyllo packages in the freezer at the market. It’s mostly used for sweets but recently, I’ve seen it made into nests for savory dishes or jumbo shrimp wrapped in kataifi.
This method is much easier – you can take the kataifi out of is box and intentionally allow it to dry out…kataifi becomes the new breadcrumb! This recipe is quick, easy to prepare and from a taste perspective, the shrimp is still the star as you need not worry about eating too much kataifi vs. shrimp.
(serves 4 to 6)
24 medium sized shrimp, deveined with tails attached
3 Tbsp. olive oil
zest of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic, finely minced
3/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
pinch of cayenne
approx. 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 egg + splash of milk, beaten with a fork
8 oz./1 cup of Kataifi pastry
Sunflower oil for frying
- Cut off approx. a handful of the frozen kataifi from the package (re-seal and place back in freezer) and pull apart and crumble with your hands. You should have enough to fill 1 cup. Spread the kataifi out on a tray and allow to dry for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add the shrimp into a bowl with the olive oil, zest, garlic, pepper and cayenne and toss well. Set aside.
- Prepare your dipping station: 1 bowl with all purpose flour, another with the eggwash and a third bowl with the kataifi and a large platter to place shrimp on.
- Once the kataifi is dry to the touch, you can begin assembly: dredge shrimp in flour, coat in eggwash then cover with kataifi then reserve on a platter.
- Pour enough oil into a large, deep pot/to come up about 1 1/2 inches and heat to 375F.
- Carefully place your shrimp in the hot oil and fry for 1 1/2 minutes or until golden, reserve on paper-lined platter. Fry in batches.
- Serve with a side of Louis sauce or make a sauce with honey, lemon or lime, chilli sauce, splash of Ouzo. Lemon or lime wedges for squeezin’. A chilled Babatzim Ouzo or Tsipouro to sip as you nibble.
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