Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Fusion Twist On Shrimp & Grits: Cilantro Lime Shrimp with Collards over Cheesy Arepas

I'm still musing over what to do for My Crop Share Challenge this week, and since the brussels sprouts did not want to come out into the blizzard, I'm going to have to re-think my two items.  I got A LOT of collards, so I'm thinking those will certainly be 1 of the 2 items and...wait a tick, hold the phone, some stewed collards with apples.  Yes, yes that's what it's going to be.  I've got a ton of Fuji apples and a ton of collards, why not see if they can play nice together!

But, before we get to those, let me show you what was served up for dinner last night.  I'd seen this recipe for Cilantro Lime Shrimp from Never Enough Thyme and figured I'd wait till we got some of the items needed in an upcoming Crop Share.  But there was that beast amount of collards to contend with, so I figured aww heck just make it and toss in a bundle of collards.  Hmm, shrimp and collards, feels very Low Country.  Hmm, shrimp & grits with collards.  Grits are a cornmeal porridge.  So is polenta, but no, doesn't feel right.  Ugali (see recipe at bottom of this page)?  No.  Oooo, cheesy arepas, it's like cheesy grits pancakes!  And thus Low Country met South-of-the-Border in my kitchen and the results were deeeeeee-licious!

Cilantro Lime Shrimp with Collards over Cheesy Arepas


1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1 sweet onion, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1 tsp garlic, minced
1 small bundle collard greens, removed from stem and rough chopped
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (omit if jalapeno is enough heat for you, or just do 1/8 tsp)
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tomato, diced
2 limes, zest and juice
1/4 tsp Kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 lb frozen pre-cooked shrimp, thawed in water and detailed
1/2 cup fresh cilantro,  chopped

For arepas -- see recipe for them in Vietnamese Style Tacos and just add a handful or two of your favorite shredded cheese (for dairy free I used Daiya cheddar shreds)

Make arepas first so they have time to set up and cool a bit while you're whipping up the shrimp portion.

Then in a large skillet, heat oil and butter over medium high heat.  Add in onion, jalapeno and garlic and cook for about 3-4 minutes or until onion is translucent.  Add in collards and cook until wilted.  Season with red pepper flakes and oregano and cook for an additional minute.  Add in tomato, lime zest, lime juice, salt and pepper and cook until tomatoes are nice and soft and soupy.  Toss in thawed shrimp and cook for only a few minutes until they are heated thru and have curled up.  Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.

Place 1 arepa on each plate and top with a scoop or two of the shrimp & veggies.

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