Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Indian shrimp and sweet potatoes

I'm sure this will come as no surprise to all of you, but I own a lot of cookbooks. I've gotten to the point where I try to only buy cookbooks that are unique to my collection. I was in the market for an indian cookbook a while back and settled on 5 spices, 50 dishes, which happens to be written by a local author. The premise of the book is simple indian dishes based on 5 spices: coriander, cumin, mustard seeds, cayenne and turmeric. I've made about a quarter of the recipes in the book and have had a lot of success.

For this meal, I paired spicy seared shrimp with ginger and lemon sweet potatoes. The shrimp are quickly seared and seasoned with garlic, turmeric, cayenne, lemon juice, salt and cilantro. For the side dish, cooked cubes of sweet potato are sauteed with a mixture of red onion, mustard seeds, ginger, lemon, turmeric and serrano chile.

A word of warning: the recipes in this book definitely run on the spicy side. We have a pretty high tolerance for heat, but I always find myself cutting back the amount of cayenne and serrano chiles in these recipes. If you're sensitive to heat, you may want to cut back on the spice even further.

Both of these recipes were great - the turmeric turns the shrimp a pretty shade of yellow. I think these shrimp would be really delicious skewered and tossed onto the grill. The sweet potatoes were really unique - the sweetness worked well to counterbalance the spices.

Spicy seared shrimp
Serves 3-4
Adapted from 5 spices, 50 dishes

1 pound of large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 lemon, juiced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 T canola oil
1 T finely chopped cilantro leaves
pinch of cayenne pepper (to taste)
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
salt

Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels. Heat the oil over high heat in a large pan. Add the minced garlic to the oil, cook for one minute. Add the shrimp to the pan, sprinkle with salt, cayenne and turmeric. Cook until shrimp are pink, about 3-5 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice, season to taste with salt. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving.

Sweet potatoes with ginger and lemon
Serves 4
Adapted from 5 spices, 50 dishes

2 pounds of sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1 inch cubes, and cooked
1 T canola oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 serrano chile, very thinly sliced
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp finely grated ginger
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
salt to taste
2 T lemon juice

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over high heat; add the mustard seeds. Cover the pan with a lid and cook the mustard seeds for a minute. Lower the heat to medium, remove the lid and add the chiles, saute for one minute. Add the onion and ginger. Saute until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the turmeric and stir.

Add the sweet potatoes, season with salt and toss gently to mix. Cover and steam over low heat until the flavors meld, about 4 minutes. Season with lemon juice.


71 comments:

finsmom said...

Another great recipe, Sara!

Thanks for sharing!

Selba said...

Sounds very delicious :)

Reeni♥ said...

A beautiful meal with a lot of great flavors. The cookbook sounds great!

Katrina said...

That looks so good and I don't even like shrimp! ;)

Elra said...

Beautiful looking dish Sara, I bet it taste yummy too.
Cheers,
Elra

Diana said...

I've never thought of pairing shrimp with sweet potatoes before, but I think this recipe has sold me on the combination! I'm inspired! :)

noble pig said...

I never thought of sweet potatoes and shrimp, looks and sounds great.

Cheryl said...

I totally can get onboard with this recipe! YUM> p.s. is Chiarello as hot in person as he is on TV?

Donna-FFW said...

Sara- This sounds divine. Not only the shrimp, but the sweet potatoes too. I love that you use all your cookbooks, I should do the same with mine.

Vanessa said...

Sara, this looks absolutely delicious and the photography is amazing. I think I commented on this but just wanted to say again that your new look is gorgeous!

Amanda said...

Wow--I just saw that cookbook a few days ago and didn't buy it. I have to rethink that now if this recipe is any indication of the caliber of dishes found within it's pages. Looks fantastic, Sara!

Cathy said...

Great looking dish Sara. I adore sweet potatoes and these sound fabulous.

Robin Sue said...

Sara you always make the most beautiufl dinners. I love the pork and red cabbage post too. I bet your husband really appreciates what a fine cook his wife is!

teresa said...

This looks wonderful! I love how adventurous your food is, I'm going to have to give this one a try!

Netts Nook said...

Sara your shrimp looks great can't wait to try your recipe.

stephchows said...

Mmmmmm not only does your picture look delicious, the combination of flavors makes me know it tastes delicious too! YUM!

What A Dish! said...

Wow, what a beautiful dish! Your photography is just wonderful. I love Indian food; this sounds really yummy.

5 Star Foodie said...

Love the indian flavors in this shrimp recipe and a neat pairing with sweet potatoes - delicious!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Droolworthy! These shrimps look mighty good!

Cheers,

Rosa

Katherine Aucoin said...

Looks fabulous! I like the sweet potatoes with the shrimp.

Usha said...

This book sounds interesting so many dishes with five spices, I need to check it out...the sweet potatoes look delicious, am looking forward to giving it a try :-)

Laura said...

Thank you for the birthday wish! This shrimp dish looks soo good!

Olga said...

Beautiful combination of flavors!

Pearl said...

my mom loves indian food - i'd love to make this for her!

Pam said...

What a beautiful dish. The shrimp look perfectly cooked - great photo.

Kasey said...

I am always looking for new shrimp recipes to spice up the routine. Love the pairing with the sweet potatoes!

ChefBliss.com said...

Oh this looks delicious!! I'm with you on the cookbooks! I have so many I still have some in a box from my last move. :) Thanks for sharing this yummy treat!

Jessica@Foodmayhem said...

Great concept for a Indian cookbook...I have an Indian cookbook that I haven't really used yet because it uses tons of spices I don't have. I will get to it eventually though.

Elyse said...

I'm totally with you on the spicy dishes. Love 'em. (I like to tell myself that the heat makes my whole body "warm up" and as a result, I start burning more calories. Yes, I really tell myself this lie.) Your shrimp dish looks so amazing. This is one that I cannot wait to try. It looks simply divine!

Culinarywannabe said...

What a picture! Really, so beautiful. I have yet to make any sort of Indian style dish, mainly because I really have to be in the mood for those types of flavors. Hope you have more success with this book!

The Duo Dishes said...

We saw sweet potatoes, and it was an automatic winner! What a great combo. Especially all of that spicy flavor.

zerrin said...

I love to try different spices and this taasty dish will be a great chance for me. Picture is amazing!

My Carolina Kitchen said...

Simply gorgeous with the spices. Fabulous photo.
Sam

The Blonde Duck said...

Think you could do this with chicken? I'm allergic to shrimp.

Sara said...

Cheryl - Yes!

Donna - I make a very conscious effort to use my cookbooks, I figure I have so many taking up shelf space, I might as well put them to use!

Amanda - The recipes tend to be pretty simple, but in a good way. It's great for nights when you want something a little more exotic but don't want to spend hours in the kitchen.

Robin Sue - He does appreciate it!

Blonde Duck - Sure, just substitute chunks of chicken for the shrimp.

Jessica604 said...

I've seen so many recipes / tv shows centering around the sweet potato. I guess I better get on the band wagon! :p

Lovely recipe. I've had a hankering for Indian Butter chicken - hope to make it some time this week, or weekend.

Tammy said...

What a pretty photograph! I've never attempted to cook Indian cuisine, nor have I eaten much of it. Your post makes it look very approachable. Would love to see more posts about your Indian cooking experiences.

Maria said...

Sweet potatoes always steal the show for me!

Lorraine @NotQuiteNigella said...

That shrimp looks great and the tumeric does a great job of colouring the shrimp and is much less expensive than using saffron! :)

Sarah Herman said...

Yum!!!! My friends are always excited when I do a indian night dinner. This might be an excuse for a dinner in the near future. Plus I love to make samosas. In regards to the cocoa almond ice cream post, yes you can chop them, I just threw them in whole. Oh and I LOVE cookbooks also and magazines. My favorite magazine is Delicious. it is definately worth looking at if you haven't seen it!

Parkse said...

I made some spicy shrimp yesterday too! This looks tasty as always!

Tangled Noodle said...

This dish looks marvelous as a whole but it's the lemon-ginger sweet potatoes that hooked me! I'm going to look for this book - it has a great premise.

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

What a lovely and intriguing dish! I love all the awesome flavors!

Annie said...

Oooh, sounds so exotic!

thecleanveggie said...

oh my this sounds divine!!
love shrimp AND sweet potatoes!

Lynda said...

That looks so good and it's a great combo! Beautiful picture, too.

Erica said...

I'm not much for Indian- but this looks great Sara! I should apply your cookbook rule! I feel like I keep buying the same type of book!

Sophie said...

What a beautiful dish! I wish I could come over and borrow some of your cookbooks :)!

Barbara Bakes said...

Such gorgeous colors in this dish!

Suzy said...

Shrimp and sweet potaotes..who would have ever thought! But I bet it tastes great. They are two of my loves. They look beautiful plated up.

Girl Japan said...

Looks mighty delish Sara!!!! Yum, I am a HUGE fan of Indian cuisine and you have done it brilliantly.

gastroanthropologist said...

I can't eat more than one or two shrimp and then my skin starts to itch, but I think I'll try this recipe with a piece of fish and the sweet potatoes on the side. Love the Indian flavors and the great colors in your picture.

Grace said...

oh yeah--the spicier, the better! i have a ridiculous collection of cookbooks too, and i don't crack them open nearly often enough. :)

Kat said...

My "must try" list keeps growing and growing and now I have just added this to it. Maybe if I did not work I could get to all of the great recipes. This looks very good with ingredients that are standard in my house. I too have so many cookbooks. I need to start going through what I have instead of buying more! Lastly, your photo is awesome!

Alex said...

Definitely want to try the sweet pots and lemon. Mmmmm!

Priscilla said...

Looks delicious. You pictures are awesome.

Jescel said...

yum.. this meal sounds soo good.. maybe a yoghurt raita will make this even better... i can take spice-- i'm asian ** wink**

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Nice recipes. I'm always looking for new seafood recipes because it's not something I can experiment with easily. I think my husband would love these shrimp.

The sweet potatoes look great too. I always like my sweet potatoes spicy instead of cooked with more sugar so they're sickly sweet.

Jamie said...

This dish looks fabulous! I love shrimp, love sweet potatoes and love Indian food. Perfect! And so pretty to look at (before you gobble it up!)

glamah16 said...

I have sweet potatoes on the mind today and that looks fantastic.

Natashya said...

I love spice! I just put this book on my wishlist - looks wonderful!

Natashya said...

Ps, I have about 200 or so cookbooks... definitely an addict!

Jennifer said...

Shrimp and sweet potatos...some of my fav. protein nad starch. love the indian twist

ttfn300 said...

love the new look, and this recipe :) i wouldn't have thought to combine those two!

Yasmeen said...

I love the mellow color of turmeric,not to mention it a very healthy spice. S.potatoes together with spicy shrimp look so inviting :)

Salt N Turmeric said...

Hi Sara, thank you for visiting my blog. :)

Those shrimps look yummy. Give me those with a plate of warm white rice and Im a happy camper! lol.

Farina

Cakebrain said...

oh my...that looks so scrumptious! shrimp are my favourite seafood!

Varsha Vipins said...

The word Indian caught ma eye..:)..But still I havent heard of this combo..Shrimp with potatoes...ur pic definitely looks awesome..Do you like Indian food?then perhaps you should try some from my space,ofcourse with the spiciness cut down to min..:)

Jaime said...

i love indian food! that looks delicious!

Carolyn Jung said...

Anything with ginger and I'm so there.

KLM said...

H there... I know I am late to the party, but I just wanted to say that I happened to have shrimp and sweet potatoes, and Googled what sort of recipes I could experiment with. My husband and I both have spent time in India and love the flavours, so when I stumbled across this recipe, I knew I had to try it...

It was excellent - truly delicious. I made no substitutes, but I must say that I had to cook the potatoes for a bit longer than the recipe called. Even so, the flavours were wonderful and I will absolutely be making this dish again. Thanks so much for the fantastic new recipe idea!