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The hardest part of returning to the mainland from Hawai’i is leaving behind the ocean, the views and the food. Luckily, a few of our favorite dishes aren’t that difficult to recreate. Giovanni’s Shrimp truck is legendary. It’s in all the Oahu guide books and is worth the amazingly scenic drive. The menu is simple: shrimp scampi, spicy shrimp and lemon butter shrimp. We started our recreation with the easier scampi. With the help of Google, we found this YouTube video, which gave us the ingredients and a few tips.
Extra large shrimp, deveined, shell on
1 head (10 cloves) garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (1 tablespoon for spicier tastes)
1/2 stick clarified butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 cup white wine (dry)
2 tablespoons regular butter
Pat the shrimp dry. In a gallon zip top bag, mix the flour, paprika and cayenne pepper. Add shrimp and coat each piece of shrimp with the mixture. Heat saute pan over medium-high heat (any higher and the garlic will burn). Add clarified butter and garlic. Stir for 1 minute, then add all of the shrimp. Saute 3 minutes on each side. After 3 minutes on the second side, add the wine and 2 tablespoons butter. Saute, turning shrimp occasionally, until it reaches a caramel brown color.
We had way more shrimp than would fit in one pan! The next time we make this, I will be using the wok, as that would probably keep the garlic from burning. As we had about three pounds of shrimp total, we ended up using the entire bottle of wine. We’ll also probably take the shells off instead of leaving them on as we really like the coating. All in all, it was very close to the deliciousness that is Giovanni’s. Now if only it came with a side of the ocean…
#cookchat regulars will remember this from the chat earlier this summer. Since then, though, we’ve made a few tweaks and the recipe is as delicious as ever. (Full disclosure: this is one of J’s specialties. I just help.)
boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/3 cup matzoh meal
1/3 cup corn starch
1/3 cup flour
spices (we use Alton Brown’s spice mix of 2 tablespoons kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, 2 tablespoons Hungarian paprika, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper)
Combine the spices, flour, matzoh meal and corn starch in a zip top gallon bag. Heat a bottle of vegetable oil (or the oil of your choice) in a wok (what we use) or a 12-inch cast iron skillet or heavy fry pan. When water droplets “dance” when sprinkled on the oil it is hot enough. Coat the chicken in the egg mixture and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Add the chicken to the bag of dr mixture and coat. Then place in hot oil.
If you are adding more than one piece at a time, be sure not to crowd the pieces together. Fry for about 6 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oil and place in a colander or on paper bags.
Once cool, plate and enjoy!
If you like spicy chicken the easiest way to make the chicken spicier is to add more spices or spice amounts to the mix. However, you can always add hot sauce to the egg mixture or brush the chicken with hot sauce before adding to the dry mixture. We love this dish! It is better in flavor and texture than store-bought or fast food chicken.