This spicy shrimp dish is suitable as a main course or as a finger-food at backyard parties.
1 lb. shrimp (12-15 pieces)
1 tbsp oregano
1/2 tbsp thyme
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/3 tsp ground chipotle pepper (may be replaced with cayenne pepper)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, stems discarded before measuring
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 cup sour cream
Step 1: Shell, clean and devein shrimp. Tails may be left on for aesthetic reasons. Pat dry with a paper towel.
Step 2: In a small bowl, mix oregano, thyme, lemon pepper, chipotle pepper, salt and black pepper. Toss shrimp thoroughly with mixed spices. Ideally, let coated shrimp sit in the refrigerator for an hour for the spices to meld with the shrimp.
Step 3: Blend cilantro and lime juice in a food processor or blender until cilantro is liquefied. Pour into a small bowl and stir in sour cream. Reserve.
Step 4: Heat a dry, iron skillet or non-stick pan over high heat. When pan is hot, place shrimp on pan so that each one is side down (i.e. not too overcrowded). Cook for approximately 1 minute and turn over for another minute, or until shrimp is no longer translucent. If your pans are old and sticky, add a few drops of peanut oil or olive oil before cooking shrimp (if you have oil spray this is a perfect application).
Step 5: Repeat as necessary to cook all shrimp.
Step 6: Serve warm, or at room temperature, with cilantro dipping sauce.
Note: The secret is all in the chipotle pepper which adds a unique smokey flavour to the shrimp.
Reprinted with permission from Bob Blumer's The Surreal Gourmet Entertains (1995 Chronicle Books).