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Crispy Shrimp with Pepper Jelly and Herbs

Brad Arender

Servings: 6

East meets Deep South in this tempting hors d’oeuvre. A tempura-inspired batter makes these shrimp incredibly crisp and light, while the sweet and spicy vinaigrette pairs Southern pepper jelly with Thai chili paste and fish sauce.


For the pepper jelly vinaigrette

  • 1-1/2 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 cup pepper jelly
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 Tbs. Sriracha sauce
  • 1 tsp. good-quality fish sauce
  • Juice of one lime (zest it first and reserve the zest)
  • Salt to taste

For the herb salad

  • 1 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes, cut in quarters
  • 1 small red onion, julienned
  • 1/2 cup small-diced seedless cucumber
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted peanuts
  • Leaves from 1 bunch fresh mint
  • Leaves from 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1 bunch chives, snipped

For the batter

  • 1-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup Coors Light beer
  • 1/2 cup vodka
  • Salt to taste
  • Peanut oil, for frying
  • 12 large Louisiana shrimp, deveined


Make the vinaigrette

  • Combine all ingredients in a mason jar. Place lid on jar and shake with vigor.

Make the salad

  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl and season with salt and the zest of the juiced lime.

Make the batter

  • Combine all ingredients with a whisk until smooth.

Finish the dish

  • Add the peanut oil to a large pot to reach a depth of 3-4 inches, and heat the oil to 375°F.
  • Dip each shrimp into the batter. Add to the oil and fry for 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 minutes until golden and cooked through. Remove the shrimp from the oil and drain on a plate lined with a paper towel.
  • Serve the shrimp with the vinaigrette and herb salad.


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