The deal is that Kitchen Play posts a menu each month, and each of the six menu items has already been prepared by bloggers who post the recipes and prep instructions on their sites. Everyone else is invited to make one or more of the recipes, blog about it, and post links hither and yon.
Prizes for this month's contest are from Sur la Table and include V-Slicers and a Le Creuset French Oven. Not exactly a complete kitchen makeover, but those are nice prizes. So it seemed worth buying a few ingredients I hadn't planned on.
I decided to go with the Shrimp, Mango and Guacamole Bites recipe that was posted on Kitchen Runway.
For a "bite" it's a long recipe, with three separate parts before you assemble. First is the shrimp which has to be marinated and then grilled. Mango has to be peeled, slices cut off, and grilled. And then there's guacamole. Then the whole thing is assembled on a tortilla chip to make the bite. None of it is very complicated, though, and it can be done ahead of time. Shrimp is just as good warm, room temperature, or cold, so you can make all the components ahead and do the assembly at the last minute.
But of course on the day I decided to do this. the weather looked unfriendly for grilling and I wimped out and cooked indoors. I cooked the mango on my grill pan and cooked the shrimp in a skillet. Since I'd already gone off the map, I decided to toss some extra chopped onions (left over from the guacamole) into the marinade with the shrimp, and since I was cooking the shrimp in a skillet, it went in with all the marinade. Yeah, I'm a radical. And I tweaked the flavor just a bit in the guacamole. Yeah, I'm wild and crazy.
The recipe below has directions for both methods.
The blogger who made this used a cute little chopper for much of the prep and the recipe at the link above has those instructions. I used a knife, so that's what I wrote here.
The guacamole is very similar to one that I make, so obviously I liked that. The grilled mango was a grilled mango. Either you like them or you don't. I thought it made a nice sweet accent for the dish. The shrimp was pretty good. I could see serving them over rice, with the mango mixed into the rice and the chips and guacamole served separately.
Grilled (or not) Shrimp, Mango, and Guacamole Bites
|Here's a pile of my not-grilled shrimp|
1/2 cup cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
24 medium shrimp, peeled, cleaned, and deveined
Note: the shrimp are supposed to fit on a tortilla chip as an appetizer, so choose the size based on that. You can use larger shrimp and cut them, but the presentation won't be as pretty.
Chop cilantro and garlic and place in a medium bowl. Add olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add shrimp and marinate for at least 30 minutes.
If you planning on grilling the shrimp and will use wooden skewers, soak them in water so they don't burn on the grill.
Skewer the shrimp and place on grill (medium low heat), Grill for about 2 minutes on each side or until done. Pull off of skewer, remove tails and squeeze a little lime juice over the shrimp and season with salt if needed.
Note: I added the lime to the marinade along with some diced onion left over from guacamole, let it sit for a much shorter time, and cooked the shrimp with the marinade in a skillet. And I removed the tails earlier rather than after they were cooked.
Peel the mango. Slice the two wider "cheeks" off the mango. These are the parts you'll grill. You can eat the rest of the mango, or remove the rest as best you can, chop it up, and add it to the guacamole.
Place the mango on grill on medium-low heat. Grill for about 3-4 minutes on each side. Once mango is cool enough to handle, dice into small chunks. Note: I grilled on my grill pan and sliced thin instead of dicing. Oh, I'm such a radical.
1/4 of a medium red onion
1 jalapeno, quartered and seeded
2 large cherry tomatoes or 1 Roma tomato
1/4 cup cilantro
3 Hass avocados
sea salt and onion powder, to taste
Tortilla chips, for final assembly
Dice onions, tomato, and jalapeno. Chop the cilantro. Add it all to a bowl. Scoop the avocado out, add it to the bowl, and add lime juice and salt to taste. Add the onion powder (I didn't use it.) Stir and mash the avocado to your desired consistency.
TO ASSEMBLE: Place a small spoonful of guacamole onto the tortilla chip and artfully arrange the shrimp and of mango. Serve immediately.