The aromas alone are worth giving this dish a try. When you take your first bite you will be sold.
The flavors are not overpowering. They are subtle with a perfect balance of spice and sweetness from the shrimp and onions.
My friend Catherine of Fish and Veggies recommended this dish and passed on some great advice: put the whole spices in a cheesecloth sachet to avoid biting down on a whole peppercorn or clove.
- 2 cups jasmine rice
- 1 pound Shelled and de-veined Shrimp
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 bunch cilantro
- 2 serrano chilis (seeds removed)
- 1 – 1 inch piece of ginger
- 4 large cloves of garlic
- 4 tablespoons oil
- 1 large yellow onion
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
- 10 – 12 whole green cardamom pods
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cups water
- 2 sprigs mint
- salt to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Wash the shrimp and drain it well. Add the salt and turmeric and mix. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Peel the ginger and garlic and use a food processor to blend it to a paste with the cilantro and chilis. You can use a little water if it is too dry.
- Chop the onion and mint and leave to the side until needed.
- Heat the oil on medium in an oven safe dish. Add the peppercorns, cloves, cardamom and 1 bay leaf to a sachet of cheesecloth and tie securely. Add the sachet to the oil with the cinnamon stick and saute until fragrant, approximately 2-3 minutes.
- Add the chopped onion and saute until light brown, stirring constantly.
- Add 1/2 of the paste and saute for another minute or two.
- Add water and salt (1-2 teaspoons depending on taste) and bring to this to a boil.
- Add the rice to the boiling water and add the butter and mint. Bring this to a boil, cover and place it in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes.
- When the rice has been in the oven for about 10 minutes heat some oil in a saute pan and add the remainder of the paste along with the other bay leaf. Saute this for a minute or two and add the shrimp. Saute the shrimp until done (they should be light pink) about 5 minutes.
- Remove the rice from the oven and remove the spice sachet and cinnamon stick. Top it with the shrimp and serve.