Garlic Shrimp is a very delicate and sumptuous stir fried dish. Succulent and juicy shrimps are well stirred fried giving a salty-sweet garlicky and a little spicy flavors. It’s a perfect dish to serve anytime. Stir fried garlic shrimp is also an incredible dish to serve at a party as an appetizer or finger food.
Goes excellently well with rice or crusty French bread! The dish looks very alluring and enticing that even the kids will go wild for these delicate, pinkish and juicy looking shrimps. Garlic is an excellent ingredient that mellows the dish the longer it is cooked. Garlic also adds a distinctive sweet taste and when nicely cooked or baked it almost gives a nutty flavor, hardly resembles any form of pungency.
Garlic is extensively used in many Asian recipes. It is considered as one of the most commonly used aromatic ingredient. It’s a steady presence in almost every cuisine around the world and is often added at the start of a dish along with celery, onions and carrots. Asian cooks use it more aggressively where garlic can be dominant in sauces. In some of the recipes, garlic can also be one of the main flavoring ingredients like in this dish.
A whole roast chicken can be roasted with a pile of garlic cloves producing a fragrant flavor. Dishes like fish curry with garlic or chicken in garlic sauce or a simple garlic dal can do wonders in making your dish delicious. The smell of roasted or fried garlic will smell heavenly in your kitchen with every flavor being better and fragrant. Garlic is standard especially in many Chinese dishes. It is extensively used in Northern Chinese and Szechwan recipes.
In Indian curries, garlic along with ginger and onions, again are particularly used in the north of the country where the Punjabis especially tend to work with this magical trio. You’ll find the use of garlic in some form in almost every Thai dish, whether it’s either grated or sliced, mashed or fired, it distinctive flavors will be there somewhere. Stir fried Garlic Shrimp is a classic recipe and one does really debate whether to cook the shrimp first or the garlic.
The actual secret of this dish is cooking the shrimp first and then adding the garlic gives an amazing flavor to the shrimps. As said earlier, if you cook the garlic first, it mellows out the flavor and gives it a little sweeter taste but also increases the risk of browning it too much which actually spoils the color and texture of the dish. Hence by searing the shrimp first, the shrimps would get a nice caramelization which adds depth to the flavor.
To prepare the stir fried Garlic Shrimp; firstly make sure everything is prepped and ready to go before you heat up the wok as you would be cooking this dish over real high heat. This dish is quick and easy to prepare. Heat 1 ½ tbsp Olive oil in a heavy bottomed pan or wok. When hot, add the cleaned and de-veined shrimps. Stir fry for about 2-3 minutes or until shrimp are plump and pink.
Once it starts sizzling, add salt to taste, finely minced 6 cloves of garlic and ¼ tsp red pepper flakes. Mix and Stir fry for a minute. Keeping tossing continuously and do not allow the garlic to burn (if burnt, garlic would taste bitter).
Finally add in our secret ingredient, 3 tbsp lemon juice mixed in 1 tbsp caper brine. Toss well. Add 1/3 cup freshly chopped Italian parsley and 2 tbsp cold butter cut into 4 pieces. When the butter starts to melt down, simmer the heat and cook till done or the sauce lightly browned.
Serve as a side dish in a platter garnished with fresh parsley and lemon wedges. Serve with rice, naan or crusty French toast. If you are serving this dish as a party dish or an appetizer then use tongs to pick the shrimps out of the wok/pan, allowing the sauce to drip back into the pan and arrange the shrimp on a serving platter and top it with some sauce and garnish with freshly chopped parsley or coriander.
Do enjoy eating this juicy, moist and luscious Garlic Shrimp full of flavors!
Tip: Avoid overcooking the shrimp or they will turn rubbery. When sautéing garlic, do be very careful not to burn it. The flavor turns intensely bitter. An easy thumb rule to remember regarding the potency of the flavor of garlic is: The smaller you cut it, the stronger the flavor.
Finely chopped and/or pressing a clove exposes more surfaces to the air, causing a chemical reaction to produce that strong aroma and potent flavor. This has a great garlic flavor and tastes delicious with or without the heaters! Hence go garlicking!