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Sweet and Spicy Chinese-style Shrimp with Ginger and Scallions

By Joy Li

Serves 4, as a side course


12-16 shrimp (16-20 count or 21-25 count) with shells on
Fresh ginger, washed but not peeled, cut oblong into eight ⅛-inch slivers
3 scallions stalks, cut into 1" pieces, including white and green parts
¼ cup Ketchup
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon soy sauce
1½ teaspoon honey
¼ cup shaoxing wine (or sherry)
Hot tobasco sauce or siracha sauce, if desired


Leave shells on shrimp.  Using scissors, cut the shell of the back towards the tail, devein and wash. 

Add ½ teaspoon sugar to ⅓ cup sherry and mix to dissolve. Marinate shrimp for 15 minutes to remove any fishy aroma and to enhance carmelization.

For the sauce, combine in a small bowl: ketchup, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, honey, and dash of hot sauce if desired.

Pat the shrimps completely dry.

Coat a large, flat-bottomed pan with plenty of oil and heat to high temperature. Add sliced ginger to hot oil for 1 minute.

Add shrimp (one by one) using tongs and sear on each side for 20-30 sec. Do not crowd, and avoid steaming or boiling the shrimp. Turn each shrimp over one by one. Shrimps are done when they turn pink and opaque. Add shaoxing wine, then the sauce, coating well. Sauté the shrimps for another minute in the sauce, adding the cut scallions towards the end.

Serve immediately.

This dish is my mother-in-law's creation. For many years, my husband and I would have to call to ask for directions every time we wanted to make it.  She was always amused that we needed to ask her yet again for such a simple dish -- at last we've committed this to a recipe, with all the tips in execution and subtleties that makes for a mouthwatering result.   These shrimp are wonderful, shells and all!


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